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Hardship: Minister says looting of FCT warehouse is criminal act, insists suspects will face trial



Minister of State for the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, Mariya Mahmoud, has described the looting of a warehouse in the Gwagwa-Tasha area of Abuja on Sunday as a criminal act.

Mahmoud, who stressed that the looting was beyond hunger, vowed that residents involved in the incident would be prosecuted.

She made the declaration on Monday at the end of an assessment visit to Gwagwa-Tasha to ascertain the level of damage to the warehouse.

Speaking with reporters at the scene, Mahmoud described as unfortunate, a situation whereby hoodlums carted away all the grains and other foodstuff, including the roofs and fence of the warehouse.

The minister, who expressed disappointment over the attitude of the youths within the area, however, assured that the FCT Administration would establish a police post in all government warehouses across the territory going forward.

“We are here due to the unfortunate incident that happened early hours of yesterday, where hoodlums attacked this very warehouse and packed everything that is here, including the fence.

“Not only the food items that are here, including the roofing, windows, and even the gates of this place and offices were all attacked,’’ the minister said.

She noted that the incident occurred when the FCT Administration is restocking its warehouses to meet up with the presidential directive on distribution of palliatives to all the six area councils in the territory.

The minister vowed that the FCT Administration would prosecute those behind the incident.

According to her: “We did distribution about twice. And then about to do the third one, where these trucks were here to offload these food items, and then they were attacked, even injured some people on duty.

“This is really a bad situation. And it is not something that the Administration will take lightly. All those that are involved must be brought to book. We have to do something.

“And also, this is a sign that we need to reinforce the security situation around all our warehouses because you just have to keep food.’’ recalls that there was chaos as youths broke into a government storage facility in Gwagwa town of the FCT on Sunday and looted food items.

About 15 suspects were arrested by the police for the act and some valuables were recovered from them.