The Association of Shop Owners in UTC, Area 7, Abuja, has called on the Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) not to proceed with its planned demolition of the shopping complex.
The association in a statement jointly signed by its Chairman, Godfrey Ojarikre and a member, Michael Uwalaka, on Monday said the shop owners were not comfortable with the demolition plan, adding that it should be put on hold until appropriate conditions are met.
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It said the proposed remodeling plan of the UTC complex being submitted by the Abuja Investment Company Ltd. did not take them into consideration.
According to the association, the complex was built by individual members of the association, in accordance with the prototype designed by the FCTA in 1992.
It added that the complex was one of the best entrepreneurial shopping centres providing jobs and skill acquisition opportunities for thousands of youths in the city.
“We pray that this very unusual plan by management be rescinded for now especially at this trying time in the economic life of this nation.
“If the remodeling must take place, all stakeholders should be accommodated as partners in progress on the negotiation table.
“This presupposes that every shop owner would be offered the first right of refusal over any new allocation. Moreover, the modalities geared towards the full and successful implementation of any new project will be jointly addressed by all stakeholders,” the statement read in part.
The association recommended a seamless transition of every shop owner from his or her old shop to a new one, on affordable long-term plans.