The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) on Friday in Abuja has assured the safety of residents during the June 12, Democracy Day celebrations and beyond.
The Permanent Secretary, FCTA, Mr Olusade Adesola, gave the assurance after the routine FCT Security Committee meeting.
“Residents of FCT are very peace loving. So collectively, we are committed to a peaceful June 12 celebration.
“Security agencies have marshalled various strategies that will be deployed during this period. So, one thing I can tell the residents is to be assured of their safety in the city during the period and beyond.”
Adesola, therefore, called on residents to go about their normal and lawful activities.
He revealed that the FCTA was supporting the various security agencies through the provision of more operational vehicles and restoring those that had broken down to boost their operations and improve their response time.
On the challenge of street begging, which equally constitutes security threats to residents of Abuja, Adesola said that a multipronged approach which includes sensitisation of residents on the appropriate way to give alms would be adopted.
He said that FCTA would seek intervention of religious institutions and constructive engagements with sponsors where identified would be adopted to bring the menace to the barest minimum.
He said that even though it was in the nature of Nigerians to give alms to the needy, they should not do so on the streets as such good gestures could be used to fund purchase of illicit drugs and encourage anti-social vices.
He, therefore, called on residents to instead go to places of worship, hospitals, orphanages, etc to make such donations.
“We also discussed the issue of beggars that infiltrated the city and we have developed a multipronged approach.
“For instance, the use of sensitisation for people to know that there are better ways to give alms rather than giving to the so called poor on the streets.
“But when you give to orphanages, to churches and mosques, you go to community activities, to hospitals to donate there.
“These are channels that your money, your alms will be used for purposes that are beneficial. We will be sensitising the citizens on this, ” Olusade said.
He also called on religious institutions to sermonise to their congregants that the war on street begging and anti-social behaviours should be seen as a collective effort and not one for the government alone. (NAN)