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‘Development has destroyed our ancestral roots’

Chief of Kpaduma village Fajime Karayi has said rapid development in Abuja has continued to push original inhabitants of the capital city farther away from…

Chief of Kpaduma village Fajime Karayi has said rapid development in Abuja has continued to push original inhabitants of the capital city farther away from development, adding that government is still mounting pressure on them to move from where they are now.
 Kpaduma, is a settlement in Asokoro extension under Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC) in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
 “They are pressuring us to move out of here again. They do come with military whenever they want to threaten us. We have asked for a permanent site where they want to move us to but no response from them,” he said.
 He said the community’s ancestral roots were situated at the present African Independent Television (AIT) head office, adding that their ancestral burial ground is still there till date.
“Our ancestral burial ground is still there and we go there yearly for sacrifice. But as development comes, they keep pushing us farther into villages. They have encroached on our land and our people have no other occupation than farming” said Chief Karayi.
While giving a brief history of the village, he said the name was originally Kuruduma but when non-natives came they named it Kpaduma because it was difficult to pronounce Kuruduma.
He said the name was derived from a tree that provided protection and defended the people in ancient times, but lamented that the tree was cleared after government demolished the hill.
The village head also lamented that since they relocated and settled in the area, they have not received any help from the government.
“We don’t have hospital where people can access medical care. We take all our health emergencies to ECWA hospital Karu about 30 minutes drive from here. And people that have money go to Asokoro General Hospital. We only have a primary school here that is why our children go to Karu or Asokoro for their secondary education. They have to cover about 25 kilometers to get to school,” he said.
 He appealed to the AMAC chairman to help provide the community with social amenities.
“On several occasions we have taken our matters to the council but nothing has been done by the council to address our challenges,” he decried.
Chief Karayi also said that the community depends mainly on stream water as the borehole in the village is a private one where people that can afford go to buy water.

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