By Omeiza Ajayi – Abuja
The Federal Capital Territory Administration FCTA has read the Riot Act to hotels, restaurants, night clubs, and bars in the territory with regards to noise pollution, saying it will soon be embarking on night raids to ensure adherence to extant municipal planning laws.
The Coordinator, Abuja Metropolitan Management Council AMMC, Tpl Umar Shuaibu disclosed this on Thursday evening shortly after a meeting with owners of nightclubs, hotels, restaurants, and bars.
According to him, the administration is not out on a witch-hunt, but concerned about the need to safeguard public sanity as well as safetyof residents.
“You have rights in this city, but your right ends where somebody’s right is infringed. That is factual. We have to be our neighbours’ keepers and helpers, not becoming a nuisance to our neighbours.
“Even if you operate a restaurant and not a nightclub, but the activities constitute a nuisance to others, then it is an offence in the FCT Laws. In the Abuja Master Plan, we made our land-use plan the way things are needed for the residents.
“Where schools, hotels, markets, and other things need to be in Abuja, they have been planned that way for them to be in the appropriate places. Our concern is how to ensure that the hotels and nightclubs operate without disturbing other people.
“We must respect our rights. If you know that you are disturbing your neighbours and do not change from it, tomorrow you also will be disturbed. We must make sure that we secure the rights of our neighbours. Security matters are very important in Nigeria presently,” he said.
Also, the Director of Development Control Muktar Galadima, stressed that people must respect the Abuja Master plan saying the rules and regulations guiding development in the FCT are sacrosanct.
“We are building this city, not for ourselves but generations unborn. We recognize the fact that you are part of the development of the city, but your development should not be to the detriment of the people. If any of your clubs is found wanting, we will seal up the place.
“Noise pollution is an offence. The law states that anybody who plays music and it constitutes noise to others is an offence. We want investors in the city, but your businesses must be done in a way that does not constitute a nuisance to other people.
“Being in business should be in a location that is defined for such purposes, not for anybody to go and secure a residential property and turn it into nightclubs or hotels. It is unacceptable,” he said.
Alsodl, the Senior Special Assistant on Monitoring, Inspection, and Enforcement to the FCT Minister, Mr Attah Ikharo warned operators of restaurants and bars to resist the temptation to block adjoining roads, warning of severe sanctions for violators.
“Mostly at Wuse 2, people who patronize restaurants and clubs always block the roads with their vehicles and make the road inaccessible. That is not good and it is unacceptable,” he said.