Kaduna Government Issues Quit Notice To 110-year-old Church
The Kaduna State Urban Planning Development Agency (KASUPDA) in an ususual move has given a 7 day quit notice to St. Gregory’s Anglican Church, Sabon Gari, Zaria.
The quit notice was ordered by the Kaduna State Governor, Mallam Nasir El-Rufai.
The agency threatened that failure to comply with the directives may lead to forceful eviction of the church.
Also unusual was that the zonal manager of the agency who signed the notice did not include his name.
The notice reads “Reference to the directive given by the Executive Governor on the issue of Market development which compensation has been duly paid, you are hereby directed to vacate your residence within Seven (7) days from now, failure to comply will leave the Agency with no option than to evict you at your own expense. (from 19h – 24 September).”
In its reaction, the Chairman of the Christian Association of Nigeria in Kaduna, Joseph Hayab alarmed over the quit notice.
“CAN wishes to draw the attention of the Kaduna state government to a quit notice to St. George’s Anglican Church in Sabon Gari, Zaria,” he said in a statement.
He added “The 7-day quit notice by the Kaduna State Urban Planning Development Agency (KASUPDA), is purported to be a directive from the executive governor.
“The notice also claimed that compensation had been duly paid to the church. We are alarmed and apprehensive about this if it is true that it is a directive from the governor. But we doubt much if the governor issued the directive.”
El-Rufai had made an attempt to relocate the church in February 2016 over an expansion of the market at Sabon Gari but realized that the church had all valid documents and that even some parts of the market was erected on the Church’s land.
In his statement, Hayab said the matter was resolved in 2016 following the presentation of the necessary document by the church.
He urged Governor El-Rufai to investigate the purported quit notice and address the situation as soon as possible.
”This will go a long way in allaying fears and apprehension among Christians in the state and the nation at large,” he said.
“This unfortunate notice is coming just a few weeks after the alarm about the purported demolition of a mosque in Port Harcourt, Rivers state, which, upon investigations, was later confirmed to be false. We urge the governor to take a step to avert that kind of situation in Kaduna.”
Meanwhile, the spokesman to the state governor, Muyiwa Adekeye denied knowledge of the notice.
“I am not aware of the notice you are talking about. What I know, and is a fact that is very much in the public domain, it is that the Kaduna State government is redeveloping and expanding markets, including the Sabon-Gari market” Adekeye said via a text message.