Reintroduction of the Park and Pay Policy By the FCTA: An Exploitative and Obnoxious Venture in the Midst of Hardship

By Obioma Ezenwobodo

The recent plan by the Federal Capital Territory Authority to reintroduce the notorious and exploitative park and pay policy in the FCT has once again shown the utter disconnection between the government and the governed in Nigeria. In a time when Nigerians and residents of the FCT are experiencing biting hardship due to the sudden withdrawal of fuel subsidy, the least the FCTA, which is a primary beneficiary of the subsidy removal, could do is to enact a policy that would further tithing the noose on innocent motorists in the FCT.

It must be noted that this same policy was in operation in the FCT before it was nullified by Justice Peter Affen of the FCT High Court, Apo Abuja in 2014. Before then, roads in the FCT were partitioned to different unregulated contractors who unleashed all manner of touts and street urchins to harass, intimidate and exploit innocent motorists and residents under the guise of restoring sanity on the roads. Such was the level of carnage before they were sent parking by the court.

The renewed attempt by the authority of the FCTA to reintroduce this policy under the belief that it has acquired necessary legality is deceptive and lacking legal basis.

The FCTA should not capitalize on its inability to provide affordable and efficient public transport system in the FCT to impose obnoxious levies on innocent motorists who are filling the gap by providing their own transport system. The FCTA is advised to concern itself with ways of alleviating the hardships residents of the FCT are undergoing. This can be done by reintroducing the defunct “El’Rufai” Bus Shuttles as palliative measures for the benefits of the residents.

Obioma Ezenwobodo Esq.
NBA Garki Branch, Abuja

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