•FCTA prosecutes 29 COVID-19 offenders
Two years after the popular and ‘untouchable’ Caramelo Strip Club was demolished in Utako, within the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Cool Leo and Paris Nightclubs in Karu Site now face a similar fate.
This is as the two night clubs were, over the weekend, sealed off for violating COVID-19 protocols and for arbitrary change of land use from residential to mix use of commercial and hospitality purposes.
Head, Public Enlightenment, Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) Taskforce on Enforcement of COVID-19 Guidelines, Comrade Ikharo Attah revealed this while speaking to reporters at the Eagle Square during the trial of 29 people arrested across the FCT for breaking COVID-19 guidelines.
Ikharo vowed that FCTA authorities would stop at nothing to ensure demolition of the two popular night clubs unless they reverted to approved residential land use for the area.
He said: “Two clubs in Karu Site, have been asked to close. They operate in a residential area, against COVID-19 protocols and disrupt the peace of residents at night.
“They are Paris Club and Cool Lea and they have been sealed off indefinitely until they revert to the original land use.”
Commenting on the prosecution of the COVID-19 offenders, Ikharo said: “Twenty-Nine people were apprehended, brought before the court and the judge found them guilty.”
“We want residents to know that the fundamental thing to do is to obey health protocols, conform to them going forward and ensure that they live peacefully and happily.
Ikharo, however, scored his committee high, adding that “but in all, the compliance in Abuja is very high, compared to other places in the country.”
Presiding over proceedings at the FCT Mobile Court, sitting at the Eagle Square, Magistrate Idayat Akani of the FCT Judiciary found the defendants guilty on a one-count charge of violating the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Health Protection Regulation, 2021 by not using facemasks in public places.
According to her, the offence was liable to either imprisonment, payment of a fine or community service or both.
While 27 of the accused pleaded guilty after the charge was read to them, they paid the fine of N2, 000 each and were released.
The remaining two who pleaded not guilty were granted bail in the sum of N10, 000 each.