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Tuesday, May 24, 2022

‘120 Illegal Structures Demolished In 2012’

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Lawmaker Faults Bill On Grazing, Autonomy

PLATEAU State Government, Saturday, said it demolished 120 illegal structures, last year. The structures were demolished in the Jos and Bukuru areas.

General Manager of the Jos Metropolitan Development Board (JMDB), Mr. Matthias Hata, made the disclosure in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Jos.

Hata said that the performance of the board in 2012 was slightly below that of 2011, because the task force on city renewal had taken over some of its functions.

“We demolished more illegal structures in 2011 than the preceding year, because we were the only body saddled with that task, but now, we have a task force on city renewal that complements our duties.

“The task force handles illegal temporary structures while we in JMDB take care of illegal permanent structures. Notwithstanding this, we are both working towards the actualisation of the greater Jos master plan,” he said.

The manager explained that the demolished structures were located in Tudun Wada, Yelwa Club, Ray Field, Building Materials and Bauchi road areas.

Other areas include Zarmaganda, Rantiya, Zaria Road, Lamingo, Busabuji, Ali Kazaure and Kufang.

Meanwhile, member representing Jos South/Jos East in the Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives, Bitrus Kaze, has picked holes in two bills before the National Assembly. They are Grazing Reserve Bill and Local Government Autonomy.

According to the lawmaker, the perception that the state and local government joint account has virtually become drain-pipes on local council resources by some state governments has become the fulcrum on agitations for the abolition of the joint account rests.

According to a statement, which he issued in Jos at the weekend, protagonists of local government autonomy argue that local authorities should be completely separated from the states and should be accorded the status of a third-tier of government with a legislative list provided for the local government in the constitution.

Kaze, however, noted that there is nothing to justify any misapplication of monies accruing to any tier of governments, stressing that everything possible should be done to stop any state government found culpable in the discharge of its fiscal responsibility in that regard.

“While I align with those who feel that local governments require a degree of fiscal authority to enable them raise and utilise funds, the running of government at any level cannot be exclusive.”

He argued that local government autonomy must be understood within the context of shared responsibility.

Hata expressed optimism that the board would perform better this year because the time frame given for the actualisation of the greater Jos master plan is drawing nearer.

“We will put in extra effort to remove all structures that do not fall within the stipulated provision of the master plan. We shall cooperate with the task force on Jos city renewal to give the city a better outlook and make it one of the enviable places in Africa,” Hata said.

He called on residents to cooperate with the board and the task force, to make the Jos-Bukuru metropolis one of the most beautiful cities in the country.

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