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FCTA Decries Loss Of Over N1Trillion To Illegal Revenue Collectors In Abuja

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… As Minister Urges Area Council’s To Key Into Govt Plans
… Grants Waiver On Signage Posted On Wall

By Matthew Ogune, Abuja
FEDERAL Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) said it has lost over one trillion naira in fifteen years to illegal collectors operating in Abuja.

Director, Department of Outdoor Advertisement and Signage (DOAS), Dr. Baba Gana Adams disclosed this on Tuesday in Abuja at the official flagoff of the bills distribution ceremony for year 2020 and 2021 respectively.

His words: “What we have lost over the years as FCT to illegal revenue collectors for the past 15years, it could be up to N1trillion.

“Quote me any day, what we have lost to illegal people who have become shallots in the blood of Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs) in Abuja.

“If you need data we can sit down and analyse them, it may even be more than what I am telling you. In less than a week a bus was broken, people were attacked, if you calculate all this losses it could be more.”

Lamenting that most of his team members had almost lost their lives while discharging their duties, Adams insisted that the team would continue doing their jobs to ensure that human rights are respected.

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“Some of us would have lost our lives in this assignment because of the war that the thugs on the street face us with. January this year, we were attacked around games village, some private sector persons were also attacked also because they chose to work with government.

“We will still do our jobs with human face, we will be humane were it is necessary and we will be very decisive were we see somebody trying to harm our staff because we are trying to do the job.

“We as a government is not looking for revenue to better our lives but to return revenue back to citizens, so that they will benefit, because revenue is blood to government and blood to government is infrastructure for citizens.

“Anybody collecting revenue from people have to do that with respect for human right because if people are not living, they cannot pay revenue.”

Disclosing that the FCTA has given about 50percent discount on advertisement to banks and other institutions in Abuja, the director explained: “For the remaining 60percent, you know we have mobile advertisement promoting or seeking for patronage for their products. The bigger holdings are the bill boards we see on the street, we have given them 30percent discount because there have been total lockdown for over three months.”

Earlier in his remarks, the Permanent Secretary, FCTA, Olusade Adesola who disclosed that the Minister of FCT has granted a waiver on signage posted on wall, appealed to area council’s to key into the arrangement of the government for the growth of the FCT.

He said: “Realising the need to support SMEs that are needed to galvanise the growth of the FCT, the Minister said it was appropriate to give waiver to those enterprises that have their signages on their walls for a period of time to enable them also benefit from some of the concessions by the government.

Adesola said that the policy was to ensure that the non monetary palliative goes to all.

Admitting that there was a misunderstanding on the revenue generation effort between the FCT administration and it’s area council’s, the permanent Secretary noted that some of the agitations were rightly explained.

“We want them to cooperate with of the DOAS, work with them and wait for the benefit for all.”

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