Why Govt. Demolished AIT Headquarters in Abuja

The Federal Capital Development Authority, FCDA, this Tuesday in Abuja, demolished a structure within the premises of DAAR Communications Plc., owners of African Independent Television, AIT, and Ray Power FM.

Demolished AIT Headquarters in Abuja
Demolished AIT Headquarters in Abuja

The FCTA and DAAR Communications had on November 2018 resolved to peacefully settle dispute surrounding a portion of land occupied by the media company through an out-of-court settlement but that was not implemented.

Despite the demolition, chief of staff to the FCT minister, Bashir Mai-Borno, who led the demolition team, assured that the minister, Muhammad Musa Bello, would eventually resolve the matter amicably. He explained that his visit to the scene was necessary to determine the true position of claims and counter-claims by the parties involved, including complaints lodged by other occupiers that their plots had been subsumed by AIT, and that they do not have access to their land.

Reports indicate that although the demolished structure belongs to AIT, the demolition may not affect operations at the television station as the demolished building is not an operational building.

Founder of DAAR Communications, Raymond Dokpesi, who is also a stalwart of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, has been having a legal battle with the federal government over his alleged involvement in the diversion of N2.1 billion security funds by a former National Security Adviser, NSA, Col. Sambo Dasuki in the previous administration.

He was arrested last month by officials of the Nigeria Immigration Service, NIS, at Nnamdi Azikiwe Airport, Abuja, on his return from medical treatment at the American Hospital, Dubai.

Dokpesi, the NIS said, is on the federal government’s security watch list. The service also said there was instruction from above to arrest the businessman on arrival.

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