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					                          An Alliance to Make Cities
                          Work for the Poor as Well

 Access of the poor to housing, land and basic services in
                       Abuja, Nigeria

Maartje van Eerd, in collaboration with Rita Omono Afejuku-Egbe and Emmanuel
   Abbreviations ................................................................................................................. 4
1 Introduction ..................................................................................................................... 5
2 Methodology ....................................................................................................................6
   2.1 Objectives of the Process Mapping ...................................................................... 6
   2.2 Questions Addressed by the Process Mapping .................................................... 7
   2.3 Structure of the Report .......................................................................................... 9
3 An Introduction to Nigeria and Abuja .........................................................................10
   3.1 A Brief Introduction to Nigeria ........................................................................... 10
   3.2 Introduction to Abuja........................................................................................... 12
   3.3 Reasons for Growth of Informal Settlements in FCT........................................ 15
   3.4 Results of the Lack of Access of the Poor to Land and Housing ..................... 16
   3.5 Government Initiatives to Stimulate Access to Housing................................... 17
   3.6 Administrative Structure of the Federal Capital Territory ................................ 18
   3.7 A New Government: Responses and Expectations............................................ 19
4 Federal, State and FCT Urban Development Policies and Programmes ...................20
   4.1 Programmes for Urban Development and Poverty Alleviation ........................ 20
   4.2 An Overview of Federal Housing Policies and Their Reforms ........................ 21
   4.3 The Indigenous Population: Resettlement or Integration? ................................ 24
      4.3.1 Compensation
   4.4 From Integration to Evictions ............................................................................. 29
   4.5 The Growth of Informal Settlements .................................................................. 35
   4.6 Satellite Towns ..................................................................................................... 36
   4.7 Other Urban Policies and Planning Acts ............................................................ 37
   4.8 Federal, FCT, and Donor-Funded Programmes Stimulating Participation ..... 39
   4.9 Conclusions .......................................................................................................... 41
5 NGOs, CBOs, Networks: Collaboration and Participation in Urban Development .43
   5.1 NGOs, CBOs and Professional Networks .......................................................... 43
     5.1.1     Justice Development and Peace Commission – JDPC ..........................44
     5.1.2     Women Environmental Programme – WEP ..........................................45
     5.1.3     Community Action for Popular Participation – CAPP .........................47
     5.1.4     Society for Community Development – SCD .......................................47
     5.1.5     The Federation of the Urban Poor – FEDUP.........................................48
     5.1.6     The Greater Abuja Indigenous Assembly ..............................................49
     5.1.7     Social and Economic Rights action Centre – SERAC
     5.1.8     Centre on Housing Rights and Evictions – COHRE .............................51
     5.1.9     The Nigerian Urban Forum – NUF ........................................................51
   5.2 Participation in Urban Development .................................................................. 51
5.3 Conclusions ................................................................................................................53
6 National and International Relations ............................................................................54
   6.1 Federal and Donor-Supported Programmes ....................................................... 54
   6.2 The FCT Urban and Regional Planning Tribunal .............................................. 56
   6.3 The Human Rights Commission ......................................................................... 56
   6.4 Conclusions .......................................................................................................... 58
7 Major Findings and Observations ................................................................................59
   7.1 A Recapitulation of the Main Questions and Methodology.............................. 59
   7.2 Government Policies and Community Participation ......................................... 59
   7.3 NGOs, CBOs and Participation in Urban Governance ..................................... 61
Appendix 1 Interviews Conducted and Sites Visited .....................................................62
Appendix 2 Contact List ..................................................................................................65

Appendix 3 Conclusions and Participants IHS-Cordaid Workshop .............................70


CAP          Community Action Program
CAPP         Community Action for Popular Participation
CCT          Conditional Cash Transfer
CEPSERD      Centre for Peace Building and Socio-Economic Resources
COHRE        Centre on Housing Rights and Evictions
DFID         Department for International Development
ESC rights   Economic, Social and Cultural rights
FEDUP        Federation of the Urban Poor
FCC          Federal Capital City
FCDA         Federal Capital Development Authority
FCT          Federal Capital Territory
FCTA         Federal Capital Territory Administration
FEP          Farmers Empowerment Programme
FHA          Federal Housing Authority
GUG          Good Urban Governance
HDI          Human Development Index
IHS          Institute for Housing and Urban Development Studies
JDPC         Justice Development and Peace Commission
LAP          Legal Action Program
LEEDS        Local Economic Empowerment and Development Strategy
LGAs         Local Government Areas
MAP          Monitoring and Advocacy Program
MDGs         Millennium Development Goals
MP-MF        Multi-Partner Micro-Finance
NAP          National Action Plan
NAPEP        National Poverty Eradication Programme
NEEDS        National Economic Empowerment and Development Strategy
NRDCS        Natural Resources Development and Conservation Scheme
NUF          Nigerian Urban Forum
PKP          Promise Keeper Programme
RE-CAP       A Capacity Building Programme under NAPEP
RIDS         Rural Infrastructure Development Scheme
SEEDS        State Economic Empowerment and Development Strategy
SERAC        Socio Economic Rights Action Centre
SOWESS       Social Welfare Services Scheme
STDA         Satellite Towns Development Agency
UNDP         United Nations Development Programme
VEDS         Village Economic Development Solutions
WEP          Women Environmental Programme
YES          Youth Empowerment Scheme

1          Introduction

This report is primarily addressed to those working in the urban liveability
programme of Cordaid, in particular to the staff in charge of the activities of Cordaid
in Nigeria. Those who are interested in the development of a new town and the
challenges faced in matching the needs of the local population and the objectives of
building a national capital will certainly find this report very useful.
The report illustrates the roles played by various actors with particular attention to the
existing and potential roles of civil society organisations and NGOs vis-à-vis the
Federal Capital Development Authority and other government agencies.
The report is the result of a process mapping research falling under the framework of
the strategic alliance between Cordaid and HIS, the Institute for Housing and Urban
Development Studies. The alliance was established in 2002 in order to combine the
strengths of both organisations. The aim of the IHS-Cordaid alliance is to help
improve the quality of participatory processes and the effectiveness of policies and
public investments that benefit the poor and disadvantaged groups of society.
Focusing on cities where Cordaid already provides financial support to NGOs and
community-based processes, the alliance strives to forge stronger synergies between
bottom-up participatory approaches and the traditionally top-down policy directions
of local governments.
One of the activities that falls under the alliance is the preparation of city audits, here
referred to as ‘process mapping’, by means of rapid field surveys, on-site analysis and
interviews with those main actors actually involved in the various articulations and
dialogues taking place within existing channels of participation in a given city. The
process mapping was carried out in close cooperation with local counterparts of
Cordaid and involved various stakeholders from the community, private and public
sectors. The process mapping is based on participants’ observations of their own role
and the role of those with whom they interact as well as on the mechanisms through
which participation takes place.

It is based on an institutional analysis framework that identifies actors and their
relationships. The mapping process helps to unveil networks of social actors,
institutional frameworks and bottlenecks and potentials for local sustainable
development processes to evolve in benefit of the poor and disadvantaged segments of

It is an action-oriented research that also helps to assess the quality and quantity of the
outputs produced by Cordaid’s local partner organisations. Selected cities include
Recife (Brazil), Lima (Peru), Awassa (Ethiopia), Nairobi (Kenya), Tirana (Albania)
and Younde and Douala (Cameroon). The work involves locally based consultative
workshops, participatory rapid assessment, working seminars, meetings, interviews,
participants’ observations and a desktop review of key documents depicting the city’s
ability to promote civil society participation and participatory decision-making.

2         Methodology

This chapter will describe the objectives, the research questions and methodology
used in the process mapping.

2.1       Objectives of the Process Mapping

The main objective of this study is to make a situation analysis of Abuja, and provide
Cordaid with a report identifying processes, actors, local organisations, bottlenecks
and potentials to establish result-oriented pro-poor policies and programmes in Abuja.

Process mapping audits the situation through participants’ observations, depicting
their views and opinions, not only of the processes and bottlenecks but also of each
actor and the way forward based on their own views and experiences.

The Abuja process mapping aims to disclose eventual processes, actors and ongoing
policies that have a direct impact on the local urban development process, namely:

         Housing conditions and living environment;
         Access to land and landownership;
         Participatory processes;
         Active urban stakeholders, including the local government, national and
          foreign funding agencies, private actors, NGOs, CBOs, academic institutions,
          faith-based organisations, etc.

Furthermore, the mapping intends to disclose local initiatives in the urban sector and
it intends to eventually map their nature: who is involved, and what are the possible
impacts of these initiatives and opportunities on civil-society participation in the city?
It is a fact-finding exercise that will help to draw conclusions and suggestions
regarding ways forward and potentials for Cordaid support.

Prior to the field survey and interviews in Abuja, a desktop study was carried out to
get acquainted with the local situation, review previous studies and assemble
background information to sustain findings and responses of participants involved in
local processes.

Field surveys, interviews, site visits and discussions with local stakeholders about
their own roles and that of other stakeholders were an integral part of the process

Additionally, from the start the process mapping team involved knowledgeable IHS
alumni who have worked and actually do work in the city. This proved to be very
instrumental in quickly scanning local stakeholders, organising and prepare the local
agenda and moving around the city. Alumni also provided invaluable reporting and
backstopping support. Given the specific interest of Cordaid in problems of slums,
housing rights and evictions, the process mapping team searched for background
information on the number of slum dwellers, the numbers of evicted slum dwellers
and their situation, the proposed evictions, the policies of the government, and which

organisations play a role in preventing evictions or assisting and advising affected

2.2    Questions Addressed by the Process Mapping

The central question the process mapping addressed was:

What are the problems the poor face in accessing housing, basic services and
resources in Abuja?

In other words; what are the main problems the poor face in Abuja?
     What is the status of the provision of social housing and basic services, and
        resources such as formal credit, micro-credit, building materials?
     In addition, which organisations (NGOs, CBOs, public sector, private sector)
        play a role in providing access?

In order to answer the central question the process mapping focuses on the views of
key stakeholders, organisations, opinion-makers, scholars, knowledgeable individuals,
politicians, NGO activists, etc. The central question is subdivided into the following

1. Local government policy and improvements in the regulatory frameworks
    What are the main existing programmes and/or initiatives addressing local
      urban development, poverty, decentralisation, environment and basic
    What are the specific problems of Abuja as a planned city (conflicts between
      the Master Plan and the large influx of migrants; between existing traditional
      settlements and the new layout plan; between evictions and resettlement
      policies/compensation, etc.)?

2. Identification of Stakeholders, their partnerships and agreements
     Who are the main actors/donors involved in local development programmes
       and initiatives?
     What are the existing relationships between the municipality and the
       stakeholders, and among stakeholders (for instance federations, CBOs, NGOs,
       associations, religious institutions, private sector)?
     What is the history of their cooperation, what is the basis of their cooperation
       and what are their experiences (positive, negative/gaps). How do they perceive
       future cooperation? What are the roles of the private sector and the municipal

3. Participation
     Is there an enabling environment that favours civil society participation in the
        city at any level of planning, implementation and management?
     If not, why not? Can the stakeholders identify the bottlenecks that prevent this
        from happening?
     If there is, can any results be identified and/or verified by the mission?

       Are there any municipal policies and/or programmes that strengthen popular
        participation and empowerment of civil society organisations, NGOs and
       What are the processes, methods and means utilised by CBOs, NGOs and
        official bodies to promote participation?

4. National and international relations
     What are the existing relationships between sublevels of government, for
       instance local-central relations, as well as international organisations?
     Is there any particular international agency that is sufficiently important in
       Cordaid’s areas of concern that falls under the spectrum of this process
     Are there any important development programmes sponsored by agencies like
       the World Bank, UNDP, UN-Habitat, EU or any bilateral agency that can be
       considered relevant for the local urban development process?

The stakeholders in the study are:
        NGOs/CBOs/grassroots organisations
        Local government
        National government
        International organisations

The policies and programmes studied are in the field of:
    Local urban development
    Poverty
    Decentralisation
    The environment
    Basic services and infrastructure

Participation of grassroots organisations/NGOs/CBOs in policies and programmes is
subdivided into:
     Identification of programmes/projects/needs
     Implementation/collaboration in projects
     Monitoring
     Evaluation

The process mapping benefited from the participation of Rita Omono Afejuku-Egbe
from the very beginning. Not only was she the head of the department of Architecture
in Development Control of FDCA, for which she worked for 17 years, she also
actually knows the city well and has access to a large network of organisations and
individuals from the public, private and community sectors. Maartje van Eerd and
Rita Omono Afejuku-Egbe conducted field research for two weeks in November
2007. The Socio Economic Rights Action Centre (SERAC), an NGO that has worked
closely with Cordaid in Lagos, also participated in the process mapping. Mr Daniel
MBee and Mr Nwaghodoh Emmanuel of SERAC were part of the team during the
first week of the process mapping in November 2007.

In February 2008, a second field visit was undertaken to collect additional data. Also,
a workshop was organised to report back on the findings of the process mapping

exercise. The workshop was also intended to identify the role Cordaid could play to
support local processes in support of the urban poor in Abuja.

The team visited, interviewed and/or contacted nearly 60 individuals and 40
organisations during the field work. These organisations and individuals were
identified by the research team using the network of Rita Omono Afejuku-Egbe. Also,
the snowball method was used to identify additional respondents.

2.3    Structure of the Report

The structure of the report has been rearranged. It addresses all the sub-questions in
the Terms of Reference, but in a different, more logical order.

Chapter 3 provides an introduction to Nigeria and Abuja and the main issues and

Chapter 4 describes the main government policies and programmes.

Chapter 5 depicts the main NGOs, CBOs and professional networks and their
programmes and collaboration.

Chapter 6 presents an overview of federal and donor-supported programmes related
to urban poverty and development being implemented in Abuja.

Chapter 7 presents the major findings and observations.

3         An Introduction to Nigeria and Abuja

This chapter gives a brief introduction to Nigeria and Abuja and provides a short
historical overview of the creation of Abuja. It will address how the poor access land
and housing in the city, and the effects of the Land Use Act on the poor. The specific
problems the poor face in the city due to the fact that it is a planned city will be
described. It will also discuss the political changes in 2007 and the administrative
structure of the federal capital.

3.1       A Brief Introduction to Nigeria

Nigeria is situated in the West African sub-region of Sub-Saharan Africa and has a
total land area of 923,768 km2. It is the most populous and also one of the most
rapidly urbanising countries in Africa. According to official figures 1 the country has a
population 140 million, of which 50 per cent is urban and 50 per cent rural.

Map 1 Africa and the location of Nigeria


    Government of Nigeria, 2006.

Map 2 Nigeria and the location of Abuja


Three years after its independence in 1960, Nigeria adopted a republican constitution
with a three-tier government structure comprising federal, state and local
governments. Politically, the country’s six geopolitical regions (North-West, North-
East, North-Central, South-West, South-South and South-East) are made up of 36
states (federal units), the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) and 774 Local Government
Areas (LGAs).

Nigeria’s economy is dominated by crude oil export and characterised by low
economic growth and a low Human Development Index. The annual economic
growth averages 2 per cent per annum as compared to 2.83 per cent per annum for
annual population growth. According to the 2006 United Nations Development
Programme-UNDP Human Development Index (HDI), Nigeria occupies the 159 th
position on a list of 177 countries and ranks 76th among the 103 poorest countries in
the world.2 About 70 per cent of the population lives on less than one dollar a day.
The level of urban poverty in Nigeria ranges between 52 and 70 per cent. 70 per cent
of the urban dwellers live in slums. The housing shortage in Nigeria is estimated
between 15 and 16 million, this being the amount required to adequately house the
people. About 47 per cent lack adequate sanitation, placing Nigeria among countries
with the most unfavourable social-environmental conditions in the world. 3

Below an overview is presented of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and
the challenges of reaching them in Nigeria.

    UN-Habitat, 2007a.
    UN-Habitat, 2007ª.

Table 1 The MDG challenge in Nigeria

Millennium Development Goal                         Current Status in Nigeria
Extreme poverty to be halved between 1990 and       70 per cent of Nigerians live on less than $1 per
2015                                                day
Proportion of people suffering from hunger to be    29 per cent of children are underweight
All children to complete primary education       Less than 60 per cent of primary aged children
                                                 attend school. Seven million primary aged
                                                 children are not in school
Eliminate gender disparity in primary and        The number of girls enrolled in primary
secondary education by 2005                      education is 92 per cent of the number of boys. In
                                                 some states it is less than 40 per cent
Reduce deaths of mothers due to childbearing by  One birth in a hundred results in the death of the
three quarters between 1990 and 2015             mother. Women in northern Nigeria have a one in
                                                 fifteen chance of dying through a pregnancy-
                                                 related cause
Stop the spread of AIDS                          5 per cent of Nigerians are infected by HIV –
                                                 over 10 per cent in some states. Over one million
                                                 children have already been orphaned by AIDS
Halve the proportion of people without safe      Less than 50 per cent of the rural population has
drinking water by 2015                           access to a safe water source
Sources: National Consumer Survey 1995/96; Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys 1995 and 2000;
Demographic and Health Survey, 2003, in: DFID Country Assistance Plan for Nigeria

In May 1999, Nigeria embarked on a process of democratisation that is poised to
address several challenges of sustainable development and problems faced by the
country, in all sectors of the economy including environmental sustainability.
However, there are still several development challenges, especially in the human
settlements sector, that need urgent attention if economic growth and social welfare
are to be achieved.4

3.2     Introduction to Abuja

There are no recent population figures available concerning the number of inhabitants
in Abuja. The most recent available official census figures for Nigeria are from 1991,
when The Federal Capital City (FCC) had a population of 107,069 and the Federal
Capital Territory (FCT) a population of 378,671.5 The population of the FCT was
estimated at 660,634 in 2005, with the Gbaygi as the most dominant ethic group. 6

This paragraph of the report focuses on the creation of Abuja as the new capital and
issues such as access to land and housing by the poor, as well as the existing land
legislation and the administrative structure of Abuja.

In 1976 the Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA) was established by
Decree No. 6, and it was charged with the development of a new federal capital for
Nigeria. This decision followed the recommendations drawn from a detailed study

  UN-Habitat, 2007b: 4.
  Recently the FCT Minister and FCDA officials stated publicly that the FCT has a population of 6 or 7
million and that Abuja is the fastest growing city in the world. This is often used to justify the
demolitions, as the master plan intended a limit of 3.1 million persons in the FCC.
  SERAC, 2007.

prepared by the Akinola Aguda Panel, which examined the desirability of relocating
the capital from Lagos to Abuja. The reasons for this were twofold: the need to create
more unity and cohesion among the various ethnic groups of which Nigeria as a
nation is composed, and the need to decrease the pressure on Lagos, which was
growing very fast and becoming increasingly difficult to manage and control.

Because of the small number of people (‘the indigenous population’) living in the area
selected for the new capital, it was seen as a ‘neutral’ territory where Nigerians from
all the different ethnic groups would be welcome both as residents and investors.7
Before the development of Abuja, the FCT territory had about 845 settlements, none
with a population greater than 3000.8 Other sources mention 150,000 to 300,000
inhabitants, or even more than 316,000.9

In June 1977, the FCDA commissioned a US-based consortium, International
Planning Associates (IPA), to produce a Master Plan for the proposed capital city and
its region. The Master Plan was to forge and create a united country with equal access
and equal citizenship for all its inhabitants. It was to build a healthy and enviable
capital, and the Master Plan was to promote regional economic development. In 1979
the consortium submitted a Master Plan to FCDA that was to become the basis for the
development of Abuja. The approach was designed in four phases. The chosen area of
8,000 km2 became known as the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) of Nigeria, of which
the Federal Capital City (FCC) occupies 250 km2.

Of the 8,000 km2 of the FCT, Niger State contributed about 79 per cent of the land,
while Plateau (now Nassarawa) and Kwara (now Kogi) States contributed 16 per cent
and 5 per cent respectively. In the same way, of the 845 villages in the FCT by 1976,
82.5 per cent belonged to Niger State while 16.6 per cent and 3.9 per cent belonged to
Plateau and Kwara States respectively. By 1976, the population of the FCT was about
124,000. This rose to 132,000 in 1979 and to 179,442 in 1981. The shares of the three
states in this population work out to roughly 71 per cent, 21 per cent and 8 per cent
respectively for Niger, Plateau and Kwara States.10

The design of the Federal Capital City of Abuja was provided in a four-phase
development, with the city divided into sectors which themselves were subdivided
into districts. Each sector was to accommodate 100,000 to 250,000 people, and it was
based on the ‘neighbourhood concept’. At the end of phase 1 and 2, 1.6 million people
would live in the city, and at the end of the four phases 3 million would live there.
The actual construction work on the capital city site started in 1980. 11 A map of FCC
and the different phases is shown below.

  Ikejifor, 1997a.
  Abumere, 1973 in Ikejiofor, 1997b.
  Jibril, 2006.
10 Abumere, 2001:36.
     Ikejiofor, 1997b.

Map 3 The Federal Capital City

Source: AGIS

Phase 1 consists of four residential districts, namely: Garki, Wuse, Maitama and
Asokoro, and a central business district in the Central Area. Phase 2 and 3 are the
main residential areas in the city. Phase 2 consists of 14 residential districts and four
sector centres. Phase 3 will consist of 16 residential districts and four sector centres as
well as the industrial layout and research institutes. One of the proposed northern
districts, Gwarimpa II, has been earmarked for the Federal Housing Authority’s
National Housing Programme.12

In 1992, Urban and Regional Planning Decree No. 88 was passed, which defined the
various levels of planning at national, state and local government level. It defined an
orderly development of land use and the manner in which the state would control the

     Olomola, 2002: 200-201. In 2007 almost 90 per cent of phase 1 is complete. Construction is taking
     place in phases 2 and 3.

physical developments. It defined the setup of urban development policies and the
establishment of urban and regional planning tribunals with which to control them.

3.3     Reasons for Growth of Informal Settlements in FCT

Informal settlements grew rapidly over time due to the following reasons:

1. The creation of Abuja led to a first influx of migrants

Decree No. 51 of 12 December 1991 marked the formal transfer of the Federal
Capital of Nigeria from Lagos to Abuja. 13 The relocation of the Nigerian capital to
Abuja triggered enormous sociopolitical and economic activity and led to a massive
migration of people to the city. This put severe pressure on the housing conditions and
the existing – still rudimentary – infrastructure. Housing, in particular, became
increasingly insufficient in meeting the needs of the new population. Rising prices in
combination with the housing shortage led to a rapid increase in the number of illegal
settlements, which lack basic facilities and infrastructure. 14 It is estimated that more
than 70 per cent of Abuja’s residents live in such settlements. 15

2. The formal transfer and relocation of ministries to Abuja

In 1991 the formal transfer of the Federal Capital of Nigeria from Lagos to Abuja was
promulgated and in 1996 all ministries were relocated to Abuja. This led to a second
rapid increase in population growth and enormous pressure on the still rudimentary
infrastructure, particularly housing.

3. Improper planning and unrealistic targets

The FCT administration allocated certain areas for housing development, in
compliance with town-planning regulations and the Abuja Master Plan, and
earmarked areas for private developers to construct commercial residences. Several
resettlement and relocation policies were also adopted, but the policies were
inconsistent, inadequate, slow and procedurally difficult, which led to the massive
development of squatter settlements. 16

The reason that both government and implementing officials of the Abuja project set
such unrealistically high standards for infrastructure and housing are the grotesque
images of what they thought a new and modern capital should look like. According to
Angel and Benjamin,17 there was a lack of realism, a complete misunderstanding of
people’s needs, and a poor use of available recourses. The parties involved wanted to
create a utopian city without poverty. A study by Morah shows that policymakers in
Abuja perceive medium- and high-income housing to be more germane to the image
of the new capital than the low-cost dwellings that the majority of its citizens can
afford.18 Many indicated that low-cost housing, appropriate technology, self-help

   Ikejiofor, 1997a.
   Ikejiofor, 1997a; SERAC, 2007.
   SERAC, 2007: 13.
   SERAC, 2007: 15.
   1976, in Ikejiofor, 1996.
   1983, in Ikejiofor, 1997a.

construction, sites and services and other similar concepts are all part of a ploy by the
West to make developing countries comfortable with backward conditions. As a
result, the tastes and preferences of housing planners in Abuja favour sophisticated
Western-type house designs, materials and layouts, rather than being rooted in the
nature of local demand and available recourses. This has led to the emergence of
small-scale peripheral settlements, particularly in Karu, Nyanya and Gwagwalada. It
has also brought about physical congestion in the oldest settlement in the area of

4. The Land Use Act of 1978 and its impact on tenure security

In Nigeria all land is controlled by the government. This dates back to the Land Use
Act of 1978 which put all of the land in Nigeria in the hands of the government.
Private ownership is hardly ever allowed, and land is only allocated to individuals and
corporations by the government for development purposes. 19

The land occupied before 1978 was customary land.20 The Act proclaimed that all of
the land except for customary land would from then onwards be owned by the
government. In each state the governor has a vested interest and the authority to
allocate the land on behalf of the government, that is, the governor is in charge of
state lands. He has the sole authority to allocate land. In the Federal Capital Territory
there is no governor and land is owned directly by the president and the Minister of
FCT, who is a presidential appointee. The minister allocates land on the president’s
behalf. If someone wants to own land they have to apply to the minister and he
decides whether they will receive a Certificate of Occupancy (C of O). The
government can take over customary and leasehold land in cases of ‘overriding public
interest’, under the condition that the inhabitants are compensated for the crops on
their land, although not for the land itself. The maximum term for leasehold is 99
years. When someone has land in leasehold and does not develop it within five years,
the government is allowed to take it back in order to limit speculation and land lying

3.4        Results of the Lack of Access of the Poor to Land and Housing

The transfer of the Federal Capital from Lagos to Abuja led to an enormous migration
of new inhabitants to the area. There was not enough housing stock available to
accommodate the large influx of low- and middle-income earners. Also, there was no
suitable mortgage system available to provide mortgages to all who needed access to

Unable to obtain a public-sector dwelling, the majority of the middle- and low-income
servants and immigrants had no option but to either share dwelling units within the
city or seek accommodation in private-sector-built units which are located outside the
city in the outlying settlements. The consequences of this can be observed today:
overcrowding, high housing prices, peripheral development and lots of informality in
the city. Many people ended up illegally buying or renting a house or land from local

     Under the military regime it was a Decree but since the introduction of democracy it is an Act.
     Customary land was the land that traditionally belonged to local communities: tribal land.

chiefs. It has been estimated that several thousand informal and semi-formal
dwellings were built in a relatively short period. 21

3.5      Government Initiatives to Stimulate Access to Housing

The following initiatives were taken by the government to stimulate access to housing
for the poor:

1. The National Housing Fund

Each civil servant is mandated to contribute 2.5 per cent of his or her monthly income
to the National Housing Fund. If they do so for six months they are eligible for a
mortgage loan for a maximum of 30 years at an interest rate of 6 per cent. This can be
used to build and to renovate, but not to buy land. Requirements are that the applicant
has a passport that is up to date, has paid the 2.5 per cent for a minimum of six
months, and has a tax clearance certificate. A permanent contract is not required, but
the applicant has to be able to show that there is sufficient cash flow. The problem is
that the National Housing Fund is not adequate to provide mortgages for everyone,
particularly the poor. Another problem is that there is not enough housing stock. The
hope that the private sector, through investments, would account for about 35 per cent
of the cost of building Abuja was not realised. As of 1998, at least 95 per cent of the
costs have been borne by the government, which as a result has remained almost the
sole supplier of developmental infrastructure in Abuja, including housing. This has
led to a major shortfall in the number of housing units supplied.22

2. Access of private developers to land

Because of the Land Use Act all land in the city belongs to the federal government,
which disburses it through the FCDA to both private and public developers. For
private developers the chance of getting a Certificate of Occupancy depends upon
many factors, including the prospective developers origins, his or her ability to pay
the high official fees, and whether or not he or she is well-connected to the officials
and how willing he or she is to bribe his or her way through the human barriers in the

3. Development of the satellite towns

There are many satellite towns in FCT. Some satellite settlements were already in
existence before the creation of FCT, others were developed later. Since the creation
of Abuja, and particularly since 1991 when the government offices were transferred to
Abuja, the city has witnessed an enormous influx of migrants. The rate of
construction of new houses and infrastructure has been much lower than the rate of
migration. Planners therefore called for the development of more satellite towns to
provide houses for new migrants and to decongest the overcrowded city centre. This
was seen as a means to decentralise the city’s population and economic activities to

   Ikejiofor, 1997a.
   Ikejiofor, 1998.
   Ikejiofor, 1996.

new areas close to the city centre. Also, some satellite towns sprang up as a result of
resettlement between 1979 and 1983.24

3.6        Administrative Structure of the Federal Capital Territory

The administrative structure of Nigeria and the Federal Capital Territory is shown

Figure 1 The administrative structure of Nigeria and FCT

        Federal                                   FCTA, headed
        government,                               by the FCT
        headed by the                             Minister

        State                                     FCDA


The Federal Capital Territory (FCT) was created in 1976. The FCT has six area
councils: Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC), which is the only council within
FCC; Kuje Area Council; Gwagwalada Area Council; Kwali Area Council; Abaji
Area Council; and Bwari Area Council.

The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) is a federal agency and a
parastatal that falls directly under the president, with a minister in charge. The FCTA
is headed by the Federal Capital Territory Minister, who is appointed by the president.
The creation of the Ministry of Federal Capital Territory took place in 1980. 25 It has
the following responsibilities: a) Planning and development within the FCT; b)
Control of development within the FCT; c) Arrangement for provision of social
services; d) Administration of the FCT; e) Allocation of urban and rural land in the
FCT; and f) Relations with the FCDA.

The FCTA has five secretariats: Agriculture and Rural Development, Education,
Health, Social Services, and Transport. The FCTA has developed a resettlement
policy which is supposed to ensure that every original inhabitant receives support so
that they are able to start anew in any location of their choice inside FCT, but outside
the city, with the provision of housing, infrastructure and farmland. In addition, every

     Agbola, 2001: 160.
     Review of the Abuja master plan, 2001: 15.

household is also entitled to a plot of land in the city. The FCTA maintains that the
resettlement implementation processes are participatory in the sense that: a) residents
are invited by the FCTA for a dialogue on the need for relocation; b) existing
structures are enumerated to determine the number of households in informal
settlements; c) all communities to be removed are given alternative plots of land in
planned settlements with legal documentation and with all development control fees
and taxes waived; and d) squatter dwellers are given approved drawing designs for the
development of their plot.26

The Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA) is in charge of planning in the
Federal Capital Territory. FCDA has the following departments: Engineering
Services, Administration and Supplies, Finance and Accounting, Maintenance, Public
Building, Survey and Mapping, Development Control, FCT Treasury, Internal Audit,
Legal Services, Parks and Recreation, Resettlement and Compensation, and Urban
and Regional Planning. In 2007 the FCDA barely exists anymore, since there has
been a large-scale retrenchment of the staffs in the government’s bid to downsize the
civil service.

3.7     A New Government: Responses and Expectations

In April 2007 general elections were held in Nigeria. A new government was elected
under presidency of Mallam Umaru Musa Yar’Adua. The new government came up
with a seven-point agenda, listing the priority areas for the coming years as follows: 1.
Sustainable growth of the real sector (housing, roads, power generation, etc.); 2.
Physical infrastructure; 3. Agriculture; 4. Human capital development; 5. Security,
law and order; 6. Combating corruption; and 7. Niger Delta development.

Respondents mentioned that it was worrisome that access to land and housing,
particularly for low-income groups, is not included in the priority list of the new
government. Although one can argue that the government agenda covers some aspects
of human settlements such as housing, water and sanitation, and megacity
development,27 it is remarkable that, given the scale and seriousness of the pressure
and demand for land and housing and the problems derived from these, they are not
explicitly addressed in the agenda.

In general, people are more positive about the newly appointed FCT Minister Dr
Aliyu Modibbo Umar and his new administration governing Abuja. Most of our
interviewees notice that there have been hardly any evictions since he took over

However, in his inaugural speech, Dr Umar stated that ‘the preservation and
maintenance of the Abuja Master Plan will be his priority in order to achieve the
dream of its founding fathers’. 28 Given the planning traditions in Abuja, one might
assume that this literally means that existing human settlements and indigenous
villages situated within the plan of Abuja will have to adjust to the Master Plan’s
ordinances and not the reverse, consequently relocations and evictions may rise again.

   SERAC, 2007.
   UN-Habitat, 2007b.

4         Federal, State and FCT Urban Development Policies and Programmes

This chapter will discuss the federal and FCT programmes addressing poverty
alleviation and urban development, housing programmes and the demolitions and
evictions in FCT, and other problems related to Abuja being a planned city.

4.1       Programmes for Urban Development and Poverty Alleviation

Table 2 National/state and local government programmes for urban
development and poverty alleviation

Government      Implementing    Other      Overall        Target   Participation   Results
programme       agency          actors     objective      group    of target
                                involved                           group
NEEDS           National        DFID as    To stimulate   The      The results     NEEDS1
                government      co-        economic       poor     were to be      (finished):
                                funder     development             reached by      failed to link
SEEDS           State                      in order to             good            poverty
                government      Private    reach the               governance      reduction to
                                sector     MDGs and                and             environmental
LEEDS           Local                      alleviate               community       sustainability
                government                 poverty                 participation   and
FEEDS           Federal                                                            NEEDS2 not
                government of                                                      yet
                Abuja                                                              implemented

Nigeria’s Poverty Reduction Strategy was translated into the National Economic
Empowerment and Development Strategy (NEEDS), which was launched in May
2004. It is known as Nigeria’s ‘home-grown growth and poverty reduction strategy’. 29

The strategy specifies two aspects of previous development programmes that had to
be changed: the heavy reliance on the country’s oil production to finance the
programmes and the lack of participation of the population in governance issues.
NEEDS therefore is to be financed by the trade in a diversification of minerals. Also,
in the NEEDS programme, emphasis is to be placed on community participation in
governance issues.

NEEDs is a national programme. Nigeria’s 36 states have also developed State
Economic Empowerment and Development Strategies (SEEDS), and local
governments have developed Local Economic Development Strategies (LEEDS).
These programmes at different levels are designed to stimulate economic
development in order to achieve the MDGs through the concept of good governance
and the participation of the community in policymaking.

NEEDS, SEEDS and LEEDS are designed to empower communities and focus on
achieving growth by promoting private enterprise, better service delivery, reform of
government institutions and the political system so that the state can deliver practical
benefits to the poor. The programme also wants to overcome corruption and

     NEEDS1: 2004-2007

inefficiency. The Department for International Development (DFID) has been
supporting the NEEDS programme since 2004.

An evaluation of NEEDS1 shows that it failed to successfully link poverty reduction
strategies to environmental sustainability.

The focus of NEEDS2 30 will be on the lack of city planning and funding for the
housing sector, since these are major problems facing Nigerian cities.31 The focus of
NEEDS2 will be on ‘Nigerians’ commitment to attaining the position of one of the
20th largest economies in the world by 2020 as well as the attainment of the
Millennium Development Goals’. NEEDS2 is aimed at correcting identified critical
gaps in NEEDS1, largely by focusing on several aspects of human settlement issues
such as urbanisation, regional development, housing, environment, infrastructures,
gender and ICT.32

NEEDS2 will contribute more to poverty reduction, employment generation, wealth
creation and environmental sustainability by providing adequate, affordable and
secure housing both in urban and rural areas in Nigeria. A particular goal is to reduce
the population of slum dwellers in 2001 from 70 to 35 per cent, and to provide
opportunities for jobs, social services and welfare in housing projects.33

NEEDS2 is planned to be published in March 2008, and according to one of our
resource persons it is intended to be linked up to the new president’s seven-point

FCT has developed its own programme under NEEDS: the FCT Economic
Empowerment and Development Strategy (FEEDS), which is the ‘pilot testing
ground’ for NEEDS implementation through support to the FCTA in policy
development, support in improvements in budgeting, improving service delivery and
increasing government openness. Apart from very specific assistance that has been
given to service delivery in solid waste management in Abuja,34 and some projects on
assessing the government’s performance by the public, not much has been
implemented yet. Many of our respondents were not aware of the programme and its

4.2     An Overview of Federal Housing Policies and Their Reforms

Before discussing the present availability of housing for the poor, this section will
provide an overview of previous housing programmes in Nigeria. This review makes
clear that on the one hand the government set very ambitious policy goals that fell
short of meeting their targets, while on the other hand the problem of and demand for
housing continued to grow steadily.

   Expected to be implemented in 2008 until 2011.
   UN-Habitat, 2007b.
   UN-Habitat, 2007b.
   UN-Habitat, 2007b.
   SLGP state and government programme.

Table 3 Overview of development plans, housing policies and programmes,
actors involved, targets and results

Year      Government                   Other          Targets           Results
          policies/programmes          actors
1962-68   First National Development   -                                Establishment of housing
          plan                                                          corporations
1970-74   Second National              -              59.000 units      National Housing
          Development Plan                            planned           Commission and FHA
                                                                        20% of planned units
1975-80   Third National               -              202.000 units     15% of planned units
          Development Plan                            planned           constructed
1979      Shagari’s Low cost           -              8 million units   In 1999 only 1.800 units
          Housing scheme                              to be             were constructed
1980      National Housing             -              constructed
          Programme                                   before the year
1991      National Housing Policy      -              2000, at least
1994-95   National Housing             -              700.000 units
          Programme                                   per annum
2003      Housing and Urban            -              Overcome          Establishment Federal
          Development Policy                          housing deficit   Ministry of Housing and
                                                      Revision of       Urban Development
                                                      Land Use Act
2006      Social Housing Programme     Cooperatives   Provision of:     Still a major shortage of
                                       and private    social housing    social housing, houses
                                       sector         to low and        build for the poor were
                                                      middle income     too expensive,
                                                      groups;           infrastructure not well
                                                      commercial        developed
                                                      schemes to
                                                      middle and high
                                                      income groups
2007      ‘Abuja at 30’ housing        -              Construction of   500 constructed
          scheme                                      1000 social
                                                      housing units

In 1960 the government decided on five-year development plans. During the first
National Development Plan (1962-1968) the housing corporations were established,
which were owned by the state. After that the civil war started in 1967 following the
1966 coup d’etat. The Nigerian war ended in 1970.

During the second National Development Plan (1970-1974) a National Council on
Housing was established and the Federal Housing Authority (FHA) was created. A
National Housing Programme was initiated in which 59.000 dwellings were planned,
15.000 situated in Lagos. Only 20 per cent of this total was actually constructed.

Under the third National Development Plan (1975-1980) the federal government
decided not to leave the housing provision up to the private sector alone but to
directly intervene in housing. About 2.6 billion Naira (approximately US$ 22 million)
were earmarked for the implementation of various projects and 202,000 dwellings

were planned, including 50,000 dwellings in Lagos and 8,000 units each in the 19
states. However, only 15 per cent of these were built.

In 1979 the military government handed over power to a civilian government and
President Shehu Shagari came into power (1979-1983). In 1980 Nigeria embarked on
a National Housing Programme based on the principles of affordability and citizen
participation. The programme and the various housing schemes, such as Shagari’s
Low-Cost Housing Scheme of 1979, gave priority to targeting low- and middle-
income earners and set the target of 40,000 housing units to be built annually
nationwide. The goal was to build 2000 units in Lagos and Abuja of which 80 per
cent was meant for low-income earners through state allocations. Only 600 million
Naira was spent out of the 19 billion Naira budgeted for the National Low-Cost
Housing Programme,35 and only 20 per cent of the total or the equivalent of 32,000
units were eventually constructed.

In the beginning of the 1990s, the federal government set a target to deliver 8 million
houses by the year 2000 and a goal to deliver at least 700,000 units per annum. It
devised several policies and programmes in order to achieve such a goal, for example
the National Housing Policy of 1991 and the National Housing Programme 1994-
1995. However, in 1999, only 1,800 housing units had been completed.

To tackle the enormous deficit in the housing stock for low-income earners a
Presidential Technical Committee was set up to review the housing situation and
recommend measures for the way forward. The Committee reviewed the 1991
Housing Policy and prepared a new Housing and Urban Development Policy in 2003.
The White Paper on the recommendations of the Committee of 2002 recommended
‘the implementation of a program of constructing 40,000 housing units per annum
nation-wide with at least 1,000 units in each state’ as they found that the housing
deficit was 12 million.36

The efforts of the committee also resulted in the establishment of the Federal Ministry
of Housing and Urban Development in 2003. The committee also recommended a
revision of the Land Use Act of 1978 to overcome a number of bottlenecks in its
implementation, such as the limited access to land and the indigenous population
having no rights to own land.

In 2006, the Social Housing Programme was started by the Federal Housing Authority
(FHA). FHA was mandated to:

1.        Provide social housing to low- and middle-income groups, and special groups
          such as the elderly, youths, single parents/widows, target groups in the Niger-
2.        Develop commercial sites with a view to raising funds for social housing;
3.        Provide infrastructure services schemes to middle- and high-income groups.

The goal of the Social Housing Programme is to provide a sustainable approach to the
urgent reduction of this huge housing deficit. According to FHA the key element of

     Morka, 2007: 5.
     NEEDS draft paper on Housing.

this approach is that housing should be provided with an end-user-driven approach,
targeting low- and middle-income groups and home ownership. It is focused on public
and private sector workers, informal sector workers and special disadvantaged groups.

Funding should come from the National Housing Fund, cooperatives and home loans,
the Government Revolving Fund and the private sector. The Social Housing
Programme tries to promote and support private-sector participation in social housing
delivery through partnerships and to facilitate the provision of on-site infrastructure to
complement private initiatives in housing delivery, to contribute to urban regeneration
and redevelopment and slum upgrading, and to facilitate access to funding from social
housing financiers.37

A Presidential Committee on Affordable Housing submitted a report to the president
in 2007 on social housing targeting the poor. UN-Habitat was asked by FCDA to be in
charge of the task team in order to develop a participatory plan. The NGO Women
Environmental Programme (WEP) and mortgage banks also joined the team.38 The
team was to address the problems faced by the poor who were displaced as a result of
the demolitions taking place in Abuja, and find housing solutions for those affected by
demolitions. The team advised the FCDA on a social housing scheme called ‘The
Abuja at 30 housing scheme’. Initially 1000 units were planned, but in November
2007 only 500 units had been built for those affected by the evictions. It is expected
that the Federal Housing Agency will launch a national housing programme once this
scheme is completed, but no progress has been recorded on this programme yet. There
have been no large-scale housing schemes up to this date.

Mass-housing schemes with the private sector were also implemented in Abuja, with
the requirement that a certain percentage had to be allocated to the poor. These were
sold on the open market and eventually turned out to be too expensive for the poor.

The government has also pursued reforms in housing finance and delivery including
the reorganisation of the Federal Housing Authority, the Federal Mortgage Bank of
Nigeria and the Urban Development Bank, yielding some modest results.39

4.3     The Indigenous Population: Resettlement or Integration?

In developing, planning and implementing the Abuja Master Plan there has been little
consideration for the integration of the indigenous population. Planners and
politicians sought to start the city from scratch and develop a new town on virgin
land, regardless of the existing settlements, villages and boroughs. The plan assumed
that there were some villages situated within the city’s planning area, but it was
assumed that the population living in the area would be resettled. ‘The few local
inhabitants in the area, who needed to be moved out of the territory for planning
purposes, will be resettled outside the area in places of their choice at Government
expense’.40 This meant that they would be resettled in the neighbouring states.

   FHA presentation 2007.
   WEP pulled out of the team because it argued that it was too much private sector driven and in the
end not beneficial for the urban poor.
   UN-Habitat, 2007b.
   Gen. Murtala, 1976 in: Jibril, 2006.

However, available data shows that there are actually many more villages in the
territory of Abuja than had originally been foreseen, so that it turned out to be too
expensive for the government to resettle everyone. In the period 1976-1979, the total
compensation cost, as is shown in the table below, was in the order of 150 million
Naira, by 1981 the total cost had gone up to 229.8 million Naira. 41 The cost of
relocating the indigenous population makes the implementation of the plan a very
costly endeavour for the Nigerian state.

Table 4 Overview of villages, households and population in FCT and
compensation figures

Items                           Phases I-V      Rest of FCT        Total
Total villages                        106                 739                 845
Total households                     4,923              34,400               39,323
Total population                    22,442              157,000             179,442
                                  Compensation figures (Naira)
Compensation for economic          6,296,590         119,635,210       125,931,800
Compensation for farmlands       3,620,217           68,784,123            72,404,340
Compensation for community        395,500             7,514,500             7,910,000
Compensation for houses and      1,176,670           22,356,730            23,533,400
Total                           11,488,977           218,290,563       229,779,540
Source: Abumere, 1981, in Abumere, 2002: 37

A survey was conducted to determine who wished to move out and who wished to
remain in the FCT. About 78 per cent of all households in the FCT wished to remain
and about 21 per cent wished to leave. Thus more than three quarters of the
population voiced their desired to remain where they were. These findings actually
influenced changes in the resettlement policies so that those who opted to leave would
be entitled to compensation and resettlement by FCT.

Picture 1 Old Karu, an indigenous village in FCT

     Mabogunje and Abumere in: Abumere, 2002: 26.

Picture 2 Open drainage in Old Karu

Those who opted to remain would not be entitled to any compensation. Those living
in priority areas of the capital city development were to be compulsorily removed and
resettled elsewhere.

All the inhabitants of the indigenous villages that chose to be resettled were offered
alternative housing outside the boundaries of the FCT, thus in the neighbouring states.
The first villages that were compulsorily removed from the FCT territory were moved
to New Wuse in Niger State. Other villages were removed to New Nyanyan and New
Karu in Nassarawa State. In later stages some villages were also resettled within FCT
in Kubwa and Usman Town.42

     Abumere, 2001: 37-38.

Box 1 Visit to New Wuse in Niger State

In the late 1970s and early 1980s the inhabitants of Wuse were all resettled to New Wuse in Niger
State, as they were living within the footprint of FCT. Houses were allocated to them in the new area.

New Wuse is an hour’s drive from Abuja nowadays, meaning that people with jobs in Abuja find it
very difficult to maintain them and to be subjected to intermittent and/or costly transportation. The
families that were resettled in those days received 1 hectare of farmland per household. But as they
apply shifting cultivation the soil is now infertile. In many cases families have subdivided their land
into smaller parcels.

Picture 3 New Wuse

The inhabitants of New Wuse lack access to jobs, health care and proper schooling, as is shown in the
photos below. Also, as many different communities were thrown together here a lot of tension in the
settlement was created between different groups. The disruptions caused by resettlement definitely
affected community cohesion and survival strategies. Also, it led to problems with the surrounding
areas as farmland was repossessed and handed over to the relocatees.

Picture 4 New Wuse main road

When discussing our findings and testimonies of the residents of New Wuse with officials from the
Ministry of Environment, Housing and Urban Development, we were told that at that time resources
earmarked for resettlement had been allocated to Niger State in order to develop the new area. From
that moment onwards New Wuse became the full responsibility of Niger State.

Picture 5 Interior of a primary public school in New Wuse

The process mapping revealed that joint planning commissions have been established with the
bordering states: FCT-Nassarawa State; FCT- Niger State and FCT- Kogi State in order to pool the
recourses in an attempt to control the development in the border areas. Thus there is a chance that the
improvement of New Wuse could be taken up by the FCT-Niger planning commission.

New resettlement areas under construction now are Apo, Wasa and Sherigaluyi. It is
the policy of the FCDA that all of the indigenous inhabitants of the villages that are
still located in FCC be resettled to those areas before the end of 2008. They will
receive a house for free, but they will not receive a Certificate of Occupancy, so the
land will never become their own property. According to FCDA officials, this is to
prevent them from selling off their property. The non-indigenous population will be
moved to ‘relocation centres’ in Kpegi and Yangoji. This, however, under the
condition that they pay 21.000 Naira (approximately US $170) in administration fees
and 600 Naira (approximately US $4.88) per square metre of land. They would
further be required to build a house in accordance with certain planning standards
within a period of two years or lose their right to the relocation plot. 43 It is not sure
under which conditions and when they will receive a C of O.

This brief review reveals that execution of the city design brings a severe conflict
between plan and reality, particularly when a blueprint plan is imposed on a territory,
with those living within the boundaries of the Nigerian capital paying the highest toll.
We are not only speaking of the social costs of resettlement, but also the financial
implication of providing new housing in new settlements and imposing on residents
new costs for mobility and employment. The costs (both social and financial) of
relocation have become a major problem facing both residents and government.

     Fowler, p.11, COHRE, 2008.

4.3.1 Compensation

For the indigenous population in the villages, buying and renting houses to migrants
has become an alternative source of income that balances the ‘no compensation’
policy of the government for their loss of income (crops) when their agricultural or
vacant land is taken over by the city-planning process. It is also common that local
chiefs sell and/or allocate land based on customary practices.

The Land Use Act acknowledges that whenever land is taken away from the
indigenous population because of ‘overriding public interest’, the original population
is compensated. In some cases they get access to land, without land titles, on which
they can construct their own houses. In other cases houses are constructed for them.

Picture 6 Non-indigenous village near Apo that is marked to be demolished

Picture 7 Village identified by FCDA to be demolished

Non-indigenous people, however, have no right to compensation, since they did not
obtain approval from the government to buy the land and the proper permit to be
allowed to occupy it. It is worth noting that when carrying out demolitions, the FCDA
distinguishes between indigenous and non-indigenous residents.

4.4     From Integration to Evictions

With the idea that integration would be a much cheaper option than resettlement, from
1984 onwards the government put in place an integration policy for those villages that
were still situated within the boundaries of the FCT territory. Under this policy Garki
village was used as a test case.

Box 2 Interview with the Chief of Chika village

The chief’s village is already quite old and dates back to before the 1930s. This village was selected to
be integrated into the city of Abuja. The government, however, did not develop the area properly, basic
services are lacking and the overall living conditions are below standard. On top of that many migrants
moved to the village as they had no other options due to the lack of affordable housing in the city.
Then, when Minster El-Rufai came into power, it was decided to fully implement the Master Plan and
remove all informal settlements.

Chika village now has the highest rate of demolitions. The chief told us how the demolitions started
back in 2005:

While the chief and some others from the community were in a meeting with the FCDA to discuss
resettlement, they received a call from the village that at the same time the FCDA had sent agents to
Chika to mark the houses to be demolished, creating a lot of panic among the villagers. One week later
the FCDA returned and started the demolitions.

The demolitions started on 28 November 2005. The houses of non-indigenous inhabitants were
demolished by the FCDA, but this also affected the houses of the indigenous population in the village.
Before the demolitions, the community sent letters to El-Rufai pleading for integration of their village
into the city, without any result. About 4000 houses were demolished.

In September 2007 some affected people received compensation for their farmland, the amount,
however, being far from adequate as the FCDA enumerated the crops but not the land. Others received

To discuss the resettlement the FCDA Deputy Director of Resettlement came to the village. The
community demanded to see the site first. They were told there were a school and a clinic, and they
were promised that farmland was also to be provided, but they were not given any proof. The site
where they will be resettled is near Wasa. They have not yet agreed with the resettlement, but the
government has already started the constructing of one-, two- and three-bedroom flats.

According to the chief the problem is that people are unaware of what will happen, ‘we are in the
darkness, serious one’. According to him capacity building of the community is essential. The
community wrote letters to the FCDA to stop the demolitions, but they require help with that. Also they
do not have money to hire lawyers to assist them in their fight against the FCDA. NGOs such as WEP,
SERAC and CAPP assisted and informed them, but according to the chief they need more help to claim
adequate compensation and proper housing facilities. Another problem according to him is the lack of
cooperation and solidarity between the affected villages.

Where the village is now the African Institute for Science and Technology is planned to be constructed
by private developers. The Minister said that he hoped that those resettled would be able to find a job
there, but he has given no written guarantee.

As explained in the box above, the policy of integration was reversed. Planners and
policymakers realised that Garki village had turned into a slum situated within the city
centre and this was not compatible with a new national capital. But according to
FCDA officials the land use plan that was designed for integration was never
implemented. Infrastructure and buildings were constructed according to minimal
standards and therefore the integration failed.44 This change in policy was followed by
a resettlement strategy linked to the implementation of the Abuja Master Plan.

Box 3 Interview with chief Ana

Chief Ana45
The pressure from the city and the threat of resettlement is immediately visible when you reach the
chief’s village. Right at the border of the village is a sign indicating the development of a mass-
housing scheme, on the other side the contours of Sun City are visible, a major housing project for
high-income groups. Before the farmlands of the villagers were located there, but these were
consolidated by the FCDA when the construction of Sun City started. The inhabitants of the village
have been living there for more than 600 years, but now it seems the village had no future anymore.

The issue of resettlement came up in 2003, when the villagers were invited to the FCT Minister’s
office. The inhabitants had decided that they wanted to stay in their village to protect their ancestral
homes and that they were against the resettlement. The minister’s response, however, was that it was
President Obasanjo’s policy that they had to be resettled.

On 9 and 10 October 2006, FCDA officials came to mark those houses that were going to be
demolished, and seven days later FCDA workers started the demolitions, which took ten days, after
which they left. The FCDA said that they would construct houses in Bwari but there was no
consultation and no input from the community, who feel that the location in Bwari is not appropriate
as it is ‘right in the bush’. The problem is that the community has an indigenous inheritance system,
which they can not maintain once they move to one-bedroom flats. What they want is good
compensation and access to farmland.

The major problem now in their survival is that 99 per cent of the villagers are farmers, and their
farmlands have been confiscated. In some places they received compensation in 2003, but is was

     The inhabitants of Garki were later to be resettled to Apo.
     This is a pseudonym.

completely inadequate, the highest was 10.000 Naira. The chief himself received some compensation
for his banana trees; he owned 96 trees for which he received 4000 or 6000 per tree. He says that the
FCDA uses a standard rate to calculate compensation, but this is very low and completely inadequate.

Now, with the new government, they do not know what to expect because they have not heard from
them yet. The community has requested him not to sign anything as it still fully opposes the
resettlement. In his village the houses of both non-indigenous and indigenous inhabitants were
demolished, about 1500. They did not receive any compensation at all, some of them have left now
and are scattered all over the place. They wrote a letter to the FCDA but did not hear anything. They
know that their village has been allocated to private developers. ‘But,’ he says, ‘what is the use of
destroying our houses and constructing new houses, we should be allowed to remain in our ancestral
houses instead of being sent away.’

According to the chief it is very difficult to organise the communities; one problem is that the youth is
illiterate. Another problem is that the different affected communities are incapable of uniting and
organising themselves to jointly fight the FCDA.

The government embarked on a complete resettlement of all indigenous villages that
were earmarked for resettlement from 2003 till 2007. 46 Since 2003, with the
appointment of Mallam Nasir Ahmad El-Rufai as Minister of the Federal Capital
Development Authority, the FCDA has been carrying out massive evictions in Abuja
in an attempt to reinitiate the implementation of the Master Plan, particularly in those
areas where the local planners believe that land has been misallocated or developed

El-Rufai ordered mass demolitions of businesses and homes, including 49 settlements.
These evictions, carried out between November 2005 and October 2006, affected
approximately 800,000 people. These are estimates made by local organisations.47

Until December 2006, approximately 21 to 24 of the targeted 49 settlements have
been demolished by the FCDA.48 Although the FCDA argues that this number is
inflated, it has not released any official figures based on their enumerations of the
informal settlements.49 Because of these evictions in Abuja only, in December 2006
the Center on Housing Rights and Evictions (COHRE), a Geneva-based International
Advocacy NGO, presented the Nigerian government with one of its three Housing
Rights Violator Awards for its continuing disrespect of the basic human right to
adequate housing. COHRE has identified 31 informal settlements in which
demolitions have occurred from 2003 to 2007, as can be seen in the table below.

   Jibril, 2006.
   UN-Habitat, 2007.
   COHRE, 2006.
   UN-Habitat, 2007.

Table 5 Informal settlements in which demolitions have occurred from 2003 to

1. Aleita                                             17. Karmo
2. Area 1 – near old Federal secretariat              18. Karomajigi
3. Asokoro                                            19. Kpaduma
4. Bakasi Market                                      20. Kubwa
5. Chika                                              21. Kuchigoro
6. Dakibiu                                            22. Mabushi
7. Dantata village                                    23. Nyanya
8. Durumi village                                     24. Old Karimo
9. Galadimawa                                         25. Pimoji
10. Gwagwa                                            26. Piwoyi
11. Gwarimpa                                          27. Pyakasa
12. Idu                                               28. Ruga
13. Jabi 1 (Jabi Yakubu)                              29. Unguwar Mada
14. Jabi 2 (Jabi Samuel)                              30. Utako
15. Jiwa                                              31. Zhilu
16. Kado Life Camp
Source: Fowler, COHRE, 2008

Box 4 Interview with Lou, a relocatee

Lou 50 was living in Adu before he was resettled. He came to Abuja in 1991 from Lagos because the
government was moved to Abuja. As he is a journalist who covers the political news he had to move
to Abuja. When he arrived he tried to buy a piece of land, but it was too expensive and he saw no
other alternative than to buy a piece of land illegally from a chief in Adu. He bought it on ‘squatter
basis’. His house was demolished two years ago. The FCDA held an enumeration in his place and
only the non-indigenous people were relocated, only their houses demolished. The indigenous
population still lives in Adu, and other people have started coming in, buying land again from the

Because the number of non-indigenous people in Adu that were going to be evicted was so high, and
there was so much protest, the government was forced to provide compensation in the form of land. In
Adu Lou lived in a six-bedroom flat, now in the resettlement area he has a three-bedroom flat. He paid
N33.000 in total (N12.000 survey fee and N21.000 registration fee to AGIS).

About the eviction itself he said that the non-indigenous inhabitants of Adu had been given notices so
often that the community and the chiefs did not take it seriously. They got a notice three months
beforehand, one month beforehand and again one week beforehand. But only when they saw the
bulldozers coming did the chiefs start to organise themselves and did they go to the FCDA authorities.
Only then were they informed where they were going to be relocated to. They finally started to realise
that they had to take action. They informed the FCDA that they wanted to participate in the process
and they formed various committees: a housing committee, a marketing committee and a finance
committee. The eviction itself was a traumatic experience, people had strokes, people died, women
were raped.

The place where they were going to be relocated to was imposed on them by the government, but they
were allowed to join in the housing design and financing. They rejected the use of costly material and
the marketing committee organised the use of local materials though the contacts they made with local
factories. The community had to build houses according to specific rules.

Although he is now located further away – before he was resettled he only had to travel 9 km to work
– Lou is happy about the legal ownership of his house. But there are problems in the new area as there
is no clinic and there are no schools so children are not being educated. Access to water and the
maintenance of the water pumps is also problematic.

     Lou is a pseudonym.

The demolitions have targeted homes in which non-indigenous people live, regardless
of whether the buildings were owned by indigenous or non-indigenous inhabitants.
The FCDA has not demolished homes in which indigenous people live, except in
some cases where the enumerations were not completed and the homes of indigenous
people were destroyed as well. Initially, non-indigenous people had no right to
compensation and housing, but since the public outcry in 2005, the Minister began
discussions about ‘evictions with a human face’. Since late 2005, the FCDA has been
attempting to enumerate the non-indigenous population before demolitions and has
offered those affected access to a plot of land on relocation sites that are currently
under construction. 51

Picture 8 Demolished houses in Jiwa

Only a handful of those evicted have been able to access plots at relocation sites and
even fewer have been able to afford to build new homes. Furthermore, the FCDA has
not yet followed through on the minister’s promise to provide access to water,
electricity, roads, schools and health clinics in relocation areas. To gain access to plots
on relocation sites, non-indigenous people must pay 21,000 Naira. Furthermore, they
are required to build a house based on certain minimum planning standards within
two years or they lose their right to the relocation plot. For many of the poor this is
impossible, particularly because all of their belongings have recently been
destroyed. 52

     UN-Habitat, 2007: 69.
     UN-Habitat, 2007: 69.

4.5    The Growth of Informal Settlements

Many respondents agree that the lack of access to land and housing are the most
important problems in Abuja. The following reasons were mentioned:

1. Acquiring land through the formal process is very expensive and elaborate

For an average person to gain access to land, even if he or she follows the formal
process, takes a lot of time and is very expensive. The government is in control of
land and that makes it difficult for the land markets to operate fully. Public ownership
of land has transformed into a monopoly on the land market with perverse effects on
land prices and housing markets. Speculators who have managed to acquired large
tracts of land do business with the sole aim of making large profits from land

2. Building materials, cement, labour and other building components are very

This leads to people using whatever is affordable to construct their houses. Such
materials are usually not up to legal standards. There are many private developers
operating in the city, but the majority of the city’s residents cannot afford the houses
they build. So on the one hand there is a housing deficit and on the other there are
many vacant houses that even middle-income earners cannot afford – creating an
artificial housing shortage.

3. The mortgage system is inadequate

The whole process of acquiring a mortgage can take more than a year, turning the
access to a loan into a very difficult endeavour, even if you have a secure job. Private
developers set high prices since they want to make high profits, creating a speculative

The fact that affordable housing is not available in Abuja to a large part of the
population puts increasing pressure on the land and housing stock of the indigenous
villages within and close to the boundaries of Abuja. Many people are driven to
search for housing opportunities in the indigenous villages, resulting in a rapid
increase in population, overcrowding, renting and sub-renting, as well as informal and
illegal buildings. Many immigrants who cannot afford a house in the city, among
them civil servants, journalists, lawyers, taxi drivers and people working in the
informal sector, resort to the indigenous villages, where they purchase or rent a house
or a plot from the local chiefs. This leads to large-scale informality.

Picture 9 Informal settlement with the expansion of Abuja in the background

Hundreds of thousands of people live in these informal settlements.53 Under the Land
Use Act this is illegal, but many people have no other option than to settle informally
in the indigenous villages.

4.6       Satellite Towns

The Satellite Towns Development Agency (STDA), governed by the FCTA, deals
with everything outside the territory of the Federal Capital City. There are ten satellite
towns of which seven have been planned according to a master plan, these are: Dobi,
Kuje, Kusaki-Yanga, Karchi, Bwari, Kubwa and Karu. An eighth, Anagada, is now
on the drawing board. Two others, Abuja North-West and Abuja South-West, have
not been named yet. The implementation of Karu is ongoing and construction in
Kubwa, Bwari and Karchi is underway, with core developments taking place in two
districts in each of these towns.

The FCDA is constructing the infrastructure in these areas in the form of new roads
and drainage systems. Houses are being developed, including affordable housing
estates constructed by the FCDA without the collaboration of the private sector. But
under the ‘Abuja at 30’ housing programme of 2006, when Abuja celebrated its 30 th
anniversary, a village was constructed in collaboration with the private sector,
consisting of two types of houses: 100 blocks of 12 units of affordable low-income
housing; and relocation houses. The plots serviced with infrastructure were distributed
by the agency. The plan was to construct 1000 houses, but in the end only 500 were

The idea was that the STDA would have its own budget and would be the agency
involved in regional planning for the satellite towns. However, the FCTA was not
able to acquire funding from the National Assembly for the Satellite Towns
Development Agency. Therefore, in practice, the STDA works under the Department
of Urban and Regional Planning of the FCDA. The FCT act only recognises the
FCDA, so the STDA has no legal backing and can not operate independently. The

     COHRE, 2006.

STDA mainly consists of engineers that deal with the provision of infrastructure in
the satellite towns and in the resettlement areas.

There is no policy to hand over the management and supervision of these new tows
and residential areas to their respective local councils. It is argued that these areas will
remain the property and responsibility of the FCDA because the local area councils do
not have the capacity to either manage or maintain their development. Furthermore,
the FCTA argues that it owns the land and therefore is the natural owner of the sites.

According to those interviewed by the process mapping survey, one of the challenges
faced by the department of Urban and Regional Planning of the FCDA is how to
integrate the local indigenous villages into the master plan of these satellite towns. It
seems that history is repeating itself when planners opt to have a blueprint type of
planning. The way the master plans for the new areas are developed leads one to
believe that the agency does not want to integrate the indigenous villages into the
area. Despite the fact that the agency carries out local consultations involving the area
councils and the chiefs, the latter argue that they do not have any power to change or
adjust these plans. At times the plans are flexible and reasonable demands are taken
into account by the planners. But at the end of the day it is the agency that decides
whether or not to remove the indigenous population. The fact remains that there is an
intrinsic difficulty in taking the existing settlements and indigenous villages into
account when drafting and designing a new town layout.

4.7    Other Urban Policies and Planning Acts

Table 6 Overview of government policies and programmes, other actors
involved, targets and results

Year       Government              Other       Goal/Targets                     Results
           policies/programmes     actors
1992       Urban Policy            -           ‘To promote a dynamic            In Abuja: standard
2004       Revision of Urban                   system of urban settlements      of living in
           Policy                              that will foster economic        informal
                                               growth, promote efficient        settlement,
                                               urban and regional               resettlement areas,
                                               development and ensure           satellite towns
                                               improved standard of living      low, access to
                                               and well-being’                  basic services low
1992       Urban and Regional      -           ‘Orderly development of          In Abuja: the poor
           Planning Act                        land uses in all cities and to   have no access to
                                               achieve sustainable              land and no rights
                                               development’, cities to be in    to live in the city;
                                               control of planning              shortage of
2001       NAPEP                   -           To ‘completely wipe out          Highly politicised
                                               poverty from Nigeria by the      and ineffective in
                                               year 2010’                       some states, in
                                                                                some states more
                                                                                emphasis on

                                                                                      then on
                                                                                      coordination, no
                                                                                      transparency in
                                                                                      evaluation and
2006-07        Urban Renewal by           Private          Upgrading of urban areas   No information
               FCDA                       contactors       and some selected          available
                                                           indigenous settlements

In 1992, Nigeria adopted an Urban Policy that was revised in 2004. The goal of the
revised Urban Policy is to promote a dynamic system of urban settlements that will
foster economic growth, promote efficient urban and regional development and
ensure an improved standard of living and well-being for all Nigerians.

In 1992 the Urban and Regional Planning Decree was also enacted, which seeks to
promote orderly development of land uses in all cities and to achieve sustainable

In order to streamline poverty alleviation programmes and to avoid overlap and
duplication, the National Poverty Eradication Programme NAPEP was introduced in
2001. Its main goal was to ‘completely wipe out poverty from Nigeria by the year
2010’ and it was meant to coordinate and monitor other poverty alleviation
programmes and to intervene where gaps were identified. NAPEP includes capacity-
building programmes, skill acquisition and financial schemes.

The programme consists of four schemes:

       1.       The Youth Empowerment Scheme (YES);
       2.       The Rural Infrastructure Development Scheme (RIDS);
       3.       The Social Welfare Services Scheme (SOWESS), and;
       4.       The Natural Resources Development and Conservation Scheme
                (NRDCS) 54

The programme became politicised and ineffective in some states. And although the
main goal of the programme was to monitor, evaluate and identify gaps, in some of
the states the emphasis is more on the implementation of new programmes. Another
backlog of the programme is that the resources are meagre. For 2008 the budget is 9
billion Naira: 2 billion for KEKE NAPEP,55 5 billion for micro-credits and 2 billion
for Conditional Cash Transfers (CCT) for the extremely poor.

Under the NAPEP programme in Abuja, different schemes have been implemented:
the Youth Empowerment Scheme (Yes), a Capacity Building Programme (RE-CAP),
the Farmers Empowerment Programme (FEP), the Promise Keeper Programme (PKP)
for faith based organisations, a Micro-credit scheme, the Multi-Partner Micro-Finance
(MP-MF) scheme, the Conditional Cash Transfer scheme (CCT) and the Village
Economic Development Solutions programme (VEDS). For an overview of its
beneficiaries according to the implementing agency see the table below.

     Provision of motorized tricycles to the urban poor.

Table 7 An overview of beneficiaries of the NAPEP programmes since its
implementation in FCT

NAPEP programmes                    Beneficiaries
YES                                 4044 individuals
RE-CAP                              400 individuals
FEP                                 200 individuals
PKP                                 22 organisations
Micro-credit                        400 individuals
MP-MF                               2,130 individuals
CCT                                 Not yet implemented
VEDS                                Not yet implemented
Source: NAPEP office Abuja 56

The Department of Urban and Regional Planning of the FCDA runs a programme on
Urban Renewal in urban areas that are being upgraded within the FCT, for instance in
old Karu and Anagadan, which are indigenous settlements. A contract with a
consultant was made to upgrade these areas in order to fully integrate them into the
Master Plan. According to FCDA officials this is only possible for indigenous areas
and not for non-indigenous settlements. Budget details of the programme were not

4.8     Federal, FCT, and Donor-Funded Programmes Stimulating
A number of initiatives have been launched on paper by the government to stimulate
participation by the community in policymaking. An overview is presented in the
table below.

  Budget details of NAPEP in Abuja are not available and impact assessment studies are not open to
the public.

Table 8 Overview of programmes stimulating participation

Year      Name of     Implementing          Other actors     Goals and how participation      Outcome
          program     agency                                 was to be stimulated
2004      NEEDS       Nigerian government   DFID supported   Empowering people and            No concrete
                                                             improving social service         measures to
                                                             delivery; improving the          stimulate
                                                             private sector; changing the     participation of
                                                             way the government works         communities
                                                             and improving governance         and NGOs in
                                                                                              governance in
                                                                                              a structural
2001      GUG         Nigerian government   UN-Habitat       Improving urban management       No concrete
                                                             and effective service delivery   measures and
                                                             through participation,           steps have
                                                             transparency and                 been taken to
                                                             accountability                   stimulate
                                                                                              participation of
                                                                                              and NGOs in
                                                                                              governance in
                                                                                              a structural

Although participation was not mentioned in the NEEDS documents studied, one of
the concepts of NEEDS is good governance, which implies participation of the
community in policymaking, but this is more to be implemented at the local level by
the various LEEDS programmes.

FEEDS was developed for the FCT, but no concrete programmes having a direct
influence on the population’s participation in decision-making were to be found
operational at the time of the process mapping.

Also, Nigeria was selected by UN-Habitat for launching the African chapter of the
Good Governance Campaign in 2001 in Abuja. The Global Campaign for Good
Urban Governance is one of two campaigns that have been designed by UN-Habitat
as instruments in the execution of its mandate of guiding and coordinating the
implementation of the Habitat Agenda. The Governance Campaign focuses on
improving urban management and effective service delivery. 57 Key elements of the
Good Urban Governance (GUG) campaign are participation, transparency and
accountability. Elements of the campaign that are specifically important in respect to
this report are the following:

a. Participation can be enhanced through the creation of adult literacy centres where
   the local values of good governance could be taught in the local language. People
   need to be enlightened about their rights of participation;
b. Local councils should be encouraged to use participatory budgeting mechanisms.
   Community Development Associations could be restarted to assist in this process;
c. Transparency can be promoted by making local authority information readily
   available to residents through town hall information boards, monthly newsletters


   and other means. Planning inquiry practices should be instituted. Community
   newspapers can also help in disseminating local information;
d. Citizens need to be made aware that they can call their leaders to task. Feedback
   mechanisms, such as town hall meetings and report cards can help increase
e. Capacity building is needed both at the level of local government professionals,
   and that of local leaders, for instance on communication and negotiation skills.
   Besides internal audit, public audit mechanisms should also be introduced. 58

No concrete steps have been taken or tools developed to stimulate participation of the
community in a structural manner.

One concrete action that has been taken is that in the national assembly a civil society
liaison office was established to streamline and facilitate access of NGOs to
parliamentarians and to promote institutional cooperation. Our respondents from the
CBOs and NGOs did not make use of this facility, however, and were not familiar
with it.

4.9        Conclusions

The lack of access to land and the housing shortage for the middle- and low-income
groups in Abuja are the major problems identified by many of our respondents. The
problem started at the drawing table when the city was created from scratch, without
taking the indigenous population into account and providing space for it.

Another problem is the Land Use Act, which puts ownership of all land in the hands
of the government, overriding the customary ownership of the land by the indigenous
population. The transfer of the government from Lagos to Abuja led to a large influx
of migrants into Abuja. Because of the lack of affordable housing for low- and
middle-income earners these newcomers ended up in the indigenous settlements,
leading to informality and social and spatial exclusion.

Stripped of their legal ownership of the land, the indigenous and the non-indigenous
population were at the mercy of the government, leading to large-scale evictions and
demolitions, and according to our respondents therefore also rising crime rates.

Initiatives to improve the availability of housing to low-income earners, such as social
housing and the National Housing Fund schemes, are very limited in scale and far too
insufficient to be of any significance to the large number of poor that are in need of
housing and land. The same problem, although on a much smaller scale, is now
reoccurring in the satellite towns, where indigenous inhabitants are again being
pushed out of the area.

The process mapping team came across policy documents on national, FCT and donor
supported programmes that stimulate civic participation. A specific programme that
has been described in this chapter, which implicitly tries to stimulate civic
participation through the concept of good governance, is the NEEDS programme,
with its state and local programmes SEEDS and LEEDS. This was also confirmed by


several respondents who were interviewed during the process mapping survey. UN-
Habitat also undertakes the campaign for Good Urban Governance in Nigeria that
tries to stimulate participation, transparency and accountability. At the local level,
however, these initiatives have not yet had a very significant impact.

In theory, the government has acknowledged the importance of stimulating the
participation of the community, and of transparency and accountability. In practice,
however, few significant steps have been taken. Take, for instance, access to housing
and land for the poor in Abuja. According to many of the organisations we spoke to in
Abuja, the FCDA is not willing to discuss alternatives to resettlement with them.
Integration is not seen as an option. The FCDA, however, claims that there is full
participation by all the stakeholders involved in the selection of resettlement sites, the
discussion of housing designs and issues of compensation, and the selection of
neighbours. Local leaders are invited to discuss all of the options and they are free to
decide what and whereto. But according to the community leaders we spoke to, only a
few people are invited to such meetings by the FCDA, and they are not the elected
representatives of the community.

The procedures and processes followed by the FCDA are not transparent. Information
provision to the public is lacking. Also, there is no tradition in participation and civil
servants are not trained in the concept of participation and how to apply it. Although
individual policymakers claim that the communities are ‘consulted’, the communities
and community leaders we spoke to were not invited to discuss and influence
policymaking. They were not even informed about these meetings. There is no clear
policy that defines how and when communities can influence policy- and programme-
making and implementation, and communities are not informed. In some cases a few
selected community leaders are consulted, or informed about government plans. In
other cases it is even worse and people are manipulated by the government so that it
can execute its plans.

Exemplary of this is the treatment of the local communities of Chika village. While
the local chiefs were attending a meeting at the FCDA office to discuss resettlement
issues, the FDCA sent agents to their settlement to mark the houses that were going to
be demolished. A few days later the bulldozers came and demolished all the houses of
the non-indigenous inhabitants.

Obstacles that hinder participation are:

     1. There seems to be a lack of trust between the government and the public;
     2. There is no clear structure and framework in place through which participation
        can take place and it is not mandatory;
     3. As there is no tradition in participation and no knowledge of what
        participation is and what participatory planning entails, government officials
        seem to think that by informing the public they are applying participation;
     4. There is a lack of political commitment or willingness on the part of the
        government to share power.

5     NGOs, CBOs, Networks: Collaboration and Participation in Urban

In this chapter an overview will be presented of the main NGOs, CBOs and
professional networks operating in the field of urban development issues and working
with the urban poor in Abuja and their programmes. Collaboration among NGOs and
CBOs will be discussed, and their experiences in collaborating with others.

5.1      NGOs, CBOs and Professional Networks

First an overview of the main NGOs and CBOs active in Abuja and their programmes
will be presented in the table below.

Table 9 Overview of NGOs, CBOs and professional networks interviewed, their
mission and collaboration with others

Name NGO/CBO/network           Mission/programmes                            Collaboration with
                                                                             others (and support)
Justice Development and        Faith-based organisation that works for       With SERAC, WEP,
Peace Commission – JDPC        the ‘betterment of humanity’. It runs         CAPP and others
                               various programmes such as; democracy
                               and good governance; peace building and
                               conflict resolution; emergency response
                               to demolition; community development
                               and women and youth programmes;
                               access to justice, and; environmental
Women Environmental            WEP addresses the gender inequalities of      With CAPP, SERAC,
Programme – WEP                issues relating to environment, economic      JDPC, UN-Habitat and
                               and the social rights of women, children      others
                               and youths in society. One of its
                               objectives is to address the issues of slum
                               land and housing settlement within the
                               framework of sustainable development
Community Action for           CAPP focuses on awareness raising,            With SERAC, JDPC,
Popular Participation – CAPP   capacity building and advocacy with and       WEP and others
                               for the community
Society for Community          The SCD’s vision is to have a rural           With Action Aid,
Development – SCD              community without poverty. It works           USAID, WinRock, WEP,
                               towards sustainable development to            CAPP, JDPC and others
                               empower women and children through
                               advocacy, capacity building and the rights
                               based approach. Its major programmes
                               focus on public finance analysis and
                               budget monitoring, it runs a project on
                               advocacy on finance analysis,
                               transforming girl child education in North
                               Nigeria, and democratic consolidation of
                               democracy through citizens’ participation
                               in Niger State.
The Federation of the Urban    FEDUP’s mission is to play a networking       With WEP, UN-Habitat,
Poor – FEDUP                   role for the urban poor and to provide a
                               platform for engaging with the

The Greater Abuja            The assembly strives for the development      Still in the process of
Indigenous Assembly          of the Abuja Aboriginal peoples.              being established

Social and Economic Rights   Through its three programmes: the             With WEP, CAPP,
Action Centre – SERAC        Monitoring and Advocacy Program               JDPC, COHRE
                             (MAP), the Community Action Program
                             (CAP) and the Legal Action Program
                             (LAP), SERAC seeks to build awareness
                             about economic, social and cultural rights
                             and explore strategies for securing their
                             realisation. In addition, SERAC aims at
                             broadening individuals’ and
                             communities’ access to, and
                             strengthening their participation in, the
                             design and implementation of social and
                             economic policies and programmes that
                             affect them.
Centre on Housing Rights     COHRE' s overall objective is to promote      Through SERAC with
and Evictions – COHRE        and protect the housing rights of             others
                             everyone, everywhere. To ensure
                             COHRE activities reach every corner of
                             the world, COHRE also has three
                             Regional Programmes, focusing on
                             housing rights in Africa, the Americas
                             and the Asia-Pacific, and is also active in
                             Europe. COHRE runs five thematic
                             programmes: the Global Forced Evictions
                             Programme; the Housing and Property
                             Restitution Programme; the Litigation
                             Programme; the Right to Water
                             Programme; and the Women and Housing
                             Rights Programme.
The Nigerian Urban Forum –   The NUF endeavours to provide a               Professional networks
NUF                          platform where all actors in the urban
                             scene can meet and discuss matters of
                             common interest. The aim of the NUF is
                             to involve inhabitants in all the matters
                             related to urban development.

5.1.1 Justice Development and Peace Commission - JDPC

JDPC is an Abuja-based faith-based organisation under the auspices of the Catholic
Church. Its work is limited to Abuja and is done with permission of the Arch Bishop.
JDPC has three staff members and two support staff and a few volunteers. It receives
funds from the Catholic Church, from Misereor, Catholic Relief Services (CRS) and
local contributions through the parishes.

JDPC collaborates with other NGOs and with CBOs on different programmes. On its
good governance programme it collaborates with Election Reform Network (ERN)
and Alliance for Credible Election (ACE). On its environment programme it
collaborates with Social and Economic Rights Action Centre (SERAC), Community
Action for Popular Participation (CAPP), and Women Environmental Programme
(WEP). JDPC also works with several CBOs in various councils, for instance in
Abaji, Kuje and Gwagwalada. JDPC collaborated with SERAC on SERAC’s
publication Pushing out the Poor, in which the NGOs WEP and CAPP also

participated. The networking was fruitful, but JDPC has some reservations since the
book was very critical and therefore the Arch Bishop was not very pleased. He is
more in favour of dialogue because confronting the government ‘leads to problems’.

Picture 10 JDPC office

JDPC was invited by SERAC to participate in the gatekeepers workshop which was
organised by SERAC in 2007. The goal of the workshop was to inform people about
their rights regarding land ownership and compensation. It was organised for
indigenous and non-indigenous groups. Before this workshop and all the media
attention and pressure from NGOs on the government, non-indigenous inhabitants in
Abuja were just thrown of their land, without any compensation and without any
access to housing. Now the non-indigenous people are offered plots in a resettlement
centre in Kpegyi, close to Kuje. The FCDA was also present at the gatekeepers
workshop, but retained its position that resettlement is the only option.

According to JDPC the government policies are not humane. After the demolitions
the church helped the affected communities; some people had to return to their
villages and the church provided them with transport. JDPC also offered
empowerment programmes to vulnerable groups like widows.

A major problem according to JDPC is that people are not at all involved in the
relocation process, they are not involved in the selection of sites, in the design of
houses; overall they are unaware and uninformed. The Arch Bishop has discussed this
with the government, but unfortunately without effect.

5.1.2 Women Environmental Programme - WEP

WEP was established in 1997 in Kaduna out of concern with the pollution of the river
Kaduna by industry. In 2001 the WEP director came to Abuja because of the crisis in
Kaduna. Initially she worked for the JDPC while establishing her own office in

Abuja. When it was fully established and the first projects took off she stopped
working for the JDPC and stated working full time for WEP. WEP has offices in
Abuja, Benue, Taraba, Bornu and Kaduna (but that office is temporarily closed), and
eight staff members.

The major problems identified by WEP in Abuja are issues of slums and the rapid
migration of people to the city. With the support of Misereor, WEP conducted a study
on the living conditions in 28 communities. Confronted with the scale of the
problems, WEP decided to focus its work on six communities in order to empower
them. A major difficulty according to WEP is that people affected by evictions are
unaware of their human rights and are therefore unable to fight the government. Also,
they have high and sometimes unrealistic expectations of NGOs. The communities
expected WEP to be directly involved in rehabilitating them, but because of the lack
of funds WEP is unable to do so. Misereor, however, provided funds for community
mobilisation, both for the indigenous and non-indigenous inhabitants of Abuja.

On different occasions WEP attracted media attention by publicly approving or
disapproving government actions. In July 2006, together with CAPP, Centre for Peace
building and Socio-Economic Resources Development (CEPSERD), Social Watch
Nigeria and JDPC, WEP publicly congratulated the FCT government on the review of
the Master Plan and urged it to ensure that the review exercise was ‘focused more on
both the vertical and horizontal integration of the people cum communities situated
within the landmass of FCT’. In July 2007 WEP congratulated President Yar’Adua
for suspending the Abuja demolitions and his advice to the FCTA that the demolition
of houses in the Federal Capital Territory must be done with a human face and with
due respect of the law. The press release called for the newly appointed Minister of
FCT and the FCTA to ‘stop the demolitions and to use all their energy in making FCT
a home for all Nigerians irrespective of class, gender or ethnicity’. And in September
2007 WEP organised a media release that urged the FCT Minister Dr Aliyu Modibbo
Umar to stop the ban on water vendors in the city centre. Also, WEP called on the
president to declare a ‘state of emergency’ in the water and sanitation sector and to
convene a national dialogue on the deplorable state of the water and sanitation sector
in Nigeria, in order to help formulate and guarantee policies and programmes to
redress the trend of the lack of clean and potable water.

Capp and WEP took part in a project promoting community participation in
sustainable settlement development in FCT. This project was designed to build the
capacity of the leaders of the selected CBOs to participate in community governance,
and in the formulation of policies that affect their lives – particularly environmental,
health and sanitation issues – in order to improve the standard of living.

WEP also used to collaborate with the Federation of Muslim Women but it pulled out
later because it did not want to be that outspoken. In the end WEP worked with three
organisations, JDPC, SERAC and CAPP. WEP also collaborates with UNDP, with
the communities, and with UN-Habitat. They also established an international alliance
with UN-Habitat together with HIKE (Habitat International Alliance).

5.1.3 Community Action for Popular Participation - CAPP

CAPP was established in 1993 and focuses on awareness raising, capacity building
and advocacy with and for the community. CAPP has 17 staff and volunteers.

CAPP’s major programmes are focussed on public finance analysis and budget
monitoring. It runs projects on advocacy of finance analysis, transforming girl child
education in North Nigeria, and democratic consolidation of democracy through
citizens’ participation in Niger State.

The main problem for the poor in Abuja is the cost of housing, which is extremely
high. Even for the middle class, affordable housing is hardly available, but for the
urban poor it is almost unattainable. CAPP’s approach towards the government is not
to oppose to it too directly, but instead to try to collaborate with it. According to the
CAPP director a high level of advocacy is required for those in government in order
for them to see the need for housing schemes for the poor. Capacity building and
empowering the local communities is very important. Therefore CAPP would like to
start a pilot in a community where resettlement is going to take place.

In Abuja, CAPP has tried to engage in the FCT evictions at the policy level. After the
major evictions and demolitions under El-Rufai, CAPP issued a statement together
with SERAC. WEP, the Abuja Indigenous Assembly and JDPC have started talks
with CAPP to explore the possibilities of collaboration.

5.1.4 Society for Community Development - SCD

SCD was founded in 1995. SCD has three offices; apart from the head office in
Kubwa there is an office in Edo and one in Jiwa. SCD has 17 staff members in total.

In 2004 SCD started ‘the partnership against poverty’ project, which will take seven
to ten years, with an annual budget of 20 million Naira. The project is sponsored by
the United Kingdom through Action Aid Nigeria. In this project SCD works with 22
communities in FCT and the objective is to build up their capacity, to teach them
about their rights and how to mobilise themselves. The results from 2004 are that
there is now safe water in 12 communities. SCD trains the communities to demand
their rights from the government.

SCD also organises seven-day rights-based approach trainings where communities are
empowered to identify their needs and to take action. SCD also goes to the
government directly to advocate people’s rights, but in its experience the government
is not very responsive. It runs another project of 20 million annually with Winrock
International through USAID on support to vulnerable people suffering from
HIV/Aids. Third is a project with AFRICARI Nigeria which focuses on capacity
building of child rights, poor women starting up businesses, and skill acquisition.

SCD has set up women empowerment centres where they provide vocational training.
Also it organises stakeholder meetings where communities and the concerned
government officials are invited to discuss specific problems. SCD demands that the

government follow through on improvements that it agrees to on paper, so that it can
be held accountable.

In over 20 rural communities SCD organises sensitisation and reflect trainings where
communities mobilise themselves and identify and list their problems, and develop
strategies on how to reach their goals and to make their demands to the government.

Picture 11 Reflect training of community representatives

SCD is in contact with WEB and CAPP and has collaborated with the JDPC in some
areas. SCD, WEB and CAPP are all members of the NGO network Global Campaign
Against Poverty.

5.1.5 The Federation of the Urban Poor – FEDUP

The Federation of the Urban Poor in Abuja was established with the help of WEP at
the World Habitat Day 2007. Before the inauguration of FEDUP, WEP had taken
some community leaders to South Africa where they met with representatives of Slum
Dwellers International (SDI). 59 After its establishment FEDUP became a member of
SDI. Among other things, SDI organises international exchanges to expand
perspectives and increase their members’ repertoire of solutions. Together, members
of FEDUP and UN-Habitat travelled to Ghana and India, which was very inspiring
and empowering.

FEDUP is comprised of women’s groups, grassroots associations, youths, water
vendors, representatives of 14 communities and their chiefs. Some of the communities
have been relocated, others not, they are both indigenous and non-indigenous. Some
communities have been evicted with notice, others without, some with compensation,
others without. All of these different groups joined forces in FEDUP. The challenges

     Financed by UN-Habitat.

the communities face according to FEDUP are issues like compensation. They want
to negotiate with the government on the principles and guidelines for compensation so
that they are not only compensated for what has been taken from them but are able to
build up their assets. A major problem of the urban poor is ignorance. Therefore
FEDUP wants to map the agencies responsible for resettlement and compensation to
facilitate negotiations and access to information. Also, FEDUP wants to get
policymakers engaged in urban poverty and resettlement.

Picture 12 Members of FEDUP with the research team in front of the WEP office

FEDUP is planning to write a letter to the Minister of Environment, Housing and
Urban Development to ask her to allocate land to its members in a good location so
that they can develop it themselves. The idea is that the government should encourage
the people to take the lead in construction. WEP is going to assist FEDUP in this
endeavour. FEDUP is also in contact with UN-Habitat.

5.1.6 The Greater Abuja Indigenous Assembly

Prince Gimba Gbaiza is the founder of the Greater Abuja Indigenous Assembly,
which was established two years ago. He belongs to the Gbagyi tribe, the major tribe
within FCT. The Assembly promotes the development of the Abuja Aboriginal
peoples. It therefore seeks to coordinate its activities with the Federal Government of
Nigeria; the Federal Capital Territory Administration; the Federal Capital
Development Authority; international organisations and agencies; and the private
sector and relevant NGOs. The most important problems identified by the Assembly
are the government policies of continuous resettlement and relocation of the
indigenous people from the Federal Capital City.

Prince Gimba Gbaiza is documenting all the cases of evictions and demolitions,
which he has filed in a report.60 He asked the new FCT Minister who came to visit the
villages to hold a referendum on resettlement. He is now trying to get his Assembly
registered under the umbrella of the Gbagyi Unity Forum, and to get his board of
trustees established.

He needs to be officially registered before he can talk to others and fight cases in
court. The members of his Assembly will have to pay membership fees so they can
undertake action. Although he is waiting to seek official alliance with others until his
Assembly is registered, he is already in contact with CAPP and with UN-Habitat and
through them he is linking up to others.

5.1.7 Social and Economic Rights Action Centre – SERAC

SERAC, a Lagos based NGO, was established in 1995. It has 20 staff members,
including four lawyers and support staff. SERAC is concerned with the promotion
and protection of economic, social and cultural rights (ESC rights) in Nigeria. SERAC
plays a leading role in developing ESC rights activism worldwide.

In 2001 SERAC, after hearing the news of evictions and demolitions in Abuja,
decided to monitor what was going on there. Before SERAC’s work in Abuja took
off, the major problems in Abuja were identified as: bad governance, demolitions and
forced evictions, population explosions, security of tenure, disconnect between policy
formulation and implementation, and lack of access to basic services, leading to
pockets of crime and overcrowding in particular areas.

SERAC conducted a study and published a book on the demolitions and evictions in
Abuja called Pushing out the Poor, Forced Evictions under the Abuja Master Plan
(2007). This report describes the evictions that have been taking place in Abuja from
2000 to 2007. SERAC collaborated on this book with a number of NGOs in Abuja.
One of the results of the study was a joint letter from the Justice Development and
Peace Commission (JDPC), Community Action for Popular Participation (CAPP),
Women Environmental Programme (WEP) and SERAC to President Obasanjo in
2005 condemning the forced evictions.

The gatekeepers workshop in 2007 was organised in Abuja by SERAC. UN-Habitat,
WEP, JDPC and the National Human Rights Commission participated. The workshop
turned out to be empowering for the communities that took part in it. Those that
joined came to realise that they had social and economic rights, and that they had the
right to demand proper compensation in case of resettlement. After the conference the
FCDA started paying compensation for cash crops, which it had never done before.

  The plight of the Aboriginal peoples in the Federal Capital Territory (F.C.T.): Abuja-Nigeria. A
seemingly endangered people.

5.1.8 Centre on Housing Rights and Evictions - COHRE

COHRE is an independent, non-governmental, non-profit human rights organisation.
It is a network of consultants and experts, with a variety of multidisciplinary skills. In
its network there are lawyers, journalists, activists, scientists. The main focus is on
housing rights and evictions, and women and housing rights.

COHRE works closely with a very broad range of partners, from grassroots housing
rights activists to non-governmental and community-based organisations and national,
regional and international institutions. Nigeria is one of the 19 focus areas. It has
conducted several fact-finding missions in Abuja.

In Abuja COHRE collaborated with SERAC on a media release in December 2006,
announcing that Nigeria had been named one of the 2006 Housing Rights Violators
for ‘persistent, widespread forced evictions’. Through this award COHRE and
SERAC urged president Obasanjo to ensure that the Minister of FCT halt all
demolitions immediately.

5.1.9 The Nigerian Urban Forum – NUF

The Nigerian Urban Forum is a professional network based in Abuja. It is a
membership organisation consisting of 45 member institutions. Membership is open
to professional bodies, private firms and consulting groups, grassroots interest groups,
community and neighbourhood associations, NGOs, finance and management groups,
public agencies and parastatals, trade unions, youth associations and age groups. The
Nigerian Urban Forum was established in 1995 as a non-governmental, non-political,
and non-profit-sharing organisation to provide a multidisciplinary an cross-sectoral
platform where all actors in the urban scene can meet and discuss matters of common

The objectives of the forum are to provide an avenue for ‘cross-fertilisation of
constructive ideas on urban development; to promote orderly growth and efficient
management of urban centres through advocacy, public sensitisation, and awareness
campaigns on contemporary issues; to mobilise grassroots support and facilitate
effective private sector participation in urban planning and management; to provide a
forum for articulating divergent professional views on habitat and environmental
management; to conduct research and disseminate information on trends, options and
strategies in urban management’. NUF works on good urban governance issues and
sustainable urban development.

The activities NUF organises are: neighbourhood forums, enlightenment and
sensitisation seminars, strategic consultations, training, and research and information
dissemination. But looking at the membership list, it is an organisation mainly of
planners, engineers and government officials, and not of NGOs and CBOs.

5.2    Participation in Urban Development

There are obstacles that NGOs and CBOs and local communities face that hinder their
effective participation in the identification of programmes/projects/needs,

implementation/collaboration in projects, the monitoring, evaluation and influencing
of government policies. These obstacles are listed below.

Lack of Capacities of Communities

Many of the NGOs agree that raising the awareness of local communities is of major
importance. People are uninformed and unaware of government plans. As one chief
stated: ‘we are in the darkness, serious one’. They do not know that they have rights
to housing and compensation in case of resettlement. They are unaware of the fact
that the government can not just take their lands and destroy their property. This is
also acknowledged by some of the chiefs we spoke to. They mentioned that a major
problem they are facing is that their youth is uneducated. Land is taken from the
communities so that they do not have any source of income, properties are destroyed
so people are impoverished and they can no longer afford to send their children to
school. Another problem according to the chiefs is the lack of cooperation among the
affected villages; they find it very hard to organise themselves with other chiefs in
order to oppose the government. Also, because many of them are uneducated they
need help from NGOs to fight the government, to write letters and advise them on
legal aspects.

Therefore NGOs went to some of these villages, for instance Chika village, to advise
the chiefs on which steps to take. Also, the gatekeepers workshop was organised by
SERAC, in which other NGOs from Abuja such as JDPC and WEP participated. The
goal of the workshop was to inform those being threatened by evictions, both
indigenous and non-indigenous people, about the roles and rights and about land
ownership and the right to proper compensation. Prior to 2007, non-indigenous people
were simply thrown off their land, now they are being relocated, and victims have
come to realise that they have the right to compensation. This shows that the efforts of
the NGOs in fighting evictions have at least had some concrete results.

Lack of Capacities of NGOs and CBOs

A major problem NGOs face is that of their internal capacity. They face heavy
competition by international organisations in keeping their project and technical staff,
as they are unable to compete with international salary standards. Also, many NGOs
are unable to identify the needs and priorities of local communities. CBOs are often
unable to formulate and list those priorities and discuss them with NGOs. NGOs and
CBOs are often unable to negotiate with the government and they do not know what
participation entails.

Some NGOs do not have a focussed approach and therefore international donors
determine their agenda. Also, NGOs and CBOs need to be better equipped to
negotiate with the government and understand participation.

Local leaders sometimes lack the capacity to organise their communities, to assess
their needs and to collaborate with other community leaders. They are unable to
identify and link up with NGOs and to negotiate with the government.

Lack of Links among NGOs and between NGOs and CBOs

The NGOs in Abuja that focus on urban poverty issues collaborate with each other in
an informal manner, depending on the type of programme and funding. The major
NGOs collaborate on specific issues such as the large-scale evictions and demolitions.
But overall the way they operate towards, and deal with the government differs quiet
substantially. Some are more confrontational, others prefer to negotiate, and again
others try to discuss issues through the mediation of religious leaders.

Also, links between CBOs and NGOs remain rather informal and not well structured,
thus missing a certain degree of formalisation in the relationships.

In order to be more effective in defending the rights and improving the situation of the
urban poor there is a need for more collaboration among NGOs and of NGOs with

5.3        Conclusions

There are obstacles that hinder effective collaboration and participation of NGOs and
CBOs in urban governance:

      1.   Some NGOs do not have a focussed approach and lack internal capacity;
      2.   Communities lack awareness of their rights;
      3.   Some local leaders lack the capacity to negotiate with the government;
      4.   Some NGOs and CBOs lack the capacity to negotiate with the government.

In order to be stronger and powerful and effective in addressing the needs of the poor,
NGOs and CBOs should try to collaborate in a more structured approach in a network
or a platform with well-defined targets and goals and duties of everyone involved.

6          National and International Relations

This chapter discusses the major national programmes and international agencies and
their programmes targeting the Federal Capital Territory. Links with government
programmes will be described. The Human Rights Commission and its work against
the evictions in Abuja will be discussed. Also, the establishment of the FCT Urban
and Regional Planning Tribunal, which provides the public with the opportunity to
fight cases of violation of the Urban and Regional Planning Act, including the
demolitions and evictions, will be described.

6.1       Federal and Donor-Supported Programmes

Table 10 Overview of federal and donor-supported programmes

Year      Name of                Implementing       Goals
          programme              agency
2003      Establishment of       UN-Habitat,        To promote UN-Habitat’s technical cooperation
          HAPSO                  Government of      with Nigeria towards achieving the goals of the
                                 Nigeria            Habitat Agenda including adequate shelter for all,
                                                    sustainable development of human settlements,
                                                    management, and the attainment of the MDG goals
                                                    of poverty eradication and improving the life of
                                                    slum dwellers. 61
          Water for African      UN-Habitat,        Improve access to water in Jos
          Cities Programme       WaterAid
          Small Towns Water      UNICEF, EU         Support water supply and sanitation in Adamawa,
          Supply and                                Delta and Ekiti State.
          Support of             UN-Habitat, DFID
          government in
          developing national
          strategies for crime
          Safer Cities           UN-Habitat
          Programme Abuja
          Supporting             UN-Habitat,        Promoting good governance, economic integration
          establishment of       UNDP, USAID        of cities, information dissemination and
          Nigerian Cities                           knowledge management and networking among
          Network                                   cities to be implemented by the government of
          Slum Upgrading         World Bank, EU,    To improve living conditions in the slums of the
          (budget of $250,000)   UN-Habitat and     major cities (excl. Abuja)
                                 Cities Alliance
          Support and            World Bank,        The World Bank commits 200 million US dollars
          implementation of      DFID, EU,          on the urban environment in Lagos while DFID
          programmes in urban    UNICEF, and GTZ    works on urban crime and capacity building for the
          and rural areas                           police in Kano, Lagos and Enugu (excl. but not in

     UN-Habitat, 2007b.

          Capacity-building      GTZ                 Kano and Ibadan
          projects in Solid
          Waste Management
          Provision of water     WaterAid            In rural areas since 1996 in six states of Nigeria.
          and sanitation

UN-Habitat and Basket Funding by Groups of Donors and Funding Agencies

In 2003, in response to a request by the government of Nigeria, the UN-Habitat
established the Habitat Programme Support Office (HAPSO) in Abuja in order to
assist and build up the capacity of the newly created Ministry of Housing and Urban
Development.62 The ministry has five staff members, including three professionals
who are in charge of the whole country. The time span for the support provided
through HAPSO was set for the period between 2005 and 2009, and it is financed by
the government of Nigeria.

In a discussion with the UN-Habitat programme manager he identified the following
major problems in Abuja:

       1. Access to housing for the poor: a participatory approach needs to be developed
           instead of the current demolitions and resettlements;
       2. Rising crime rates and insecurity as a consequence of the demolitions;
       3. The unsustainable growth of the peri-urban areas;
       4. The number of people who are dependant on the informal sector as their only
           source of income.

Crime is a major problem in many urban areas in Nigeria, and has been on the rise
since 1994 in the whole country. This is associated with poverty and unemployment.
In Abuja many of our respondents mentioned that the crime and violence problem has
been increasing along with the increase in demolitions. DFID and UN-Habitat have
supported the government in developing national strategies for crime prevention. The
Good Urban Governance Campaign Programme (paragraph 4.8) resulted in Abuja
being selected for the Safer Cities Programme of UN-Habitat. However, as of
February 2008, not much seems to have happened under this programme.

The World Bank group and DFID have prepared a joint Country Partnership Strategy
(CPS) anchored on Nigeria’s National Economic Empowerment and Development
Strategy (NEEDS). The partnership was also to include USAID, particularly at state
level, and the cooperation with UNDP, the European Union and the African
Development Bank is being strengthened. The partnership includes joint diagnostics,
joint project preparation and supervision, and joint Country Portfolio Reviews. 63

DFID also supports the ‘coalition for change’, which aims to accelerate Nigeria’s
progress towards achieving the MDGs by supporting and working with public sector
institutions leading to effective management of public resources and ensuring

     The Ministry was renamed the Ministry of Environment, Housing and Urban Development in 2007.

6.2    The FCT Urban and Regional Planning Tribunal

The Tribunal was set up in July 2005, after the major demolitions, to bring cases of
violation of land use by both the government and the public to trial. The Tribunal is
composed of an executive secretary, a judge and four other members representing city
planning, architecture, legal engineering and land survey. They are not part of the
government and can therefore operate independently. Section 86 of the Urban and
Regional Planning Act of 1992, which was reviewed in 1999, provided the basis for
the establishment of the Tribunal in 2005.

Once fully established, the Tribunal will hear matters that relate to the Urban and
Regional Planning Act, which can include conflicts between developers and the
Development Control Department along with other land use contravention, such as
illegal erections and slums, disputes relating to the amount of compensation payable
to a developer, illegal conversion of land use, and other violations concerning the
revocation of development permits by the authorities and general land administration
and control.

Cases of demolitions have already come up and the Tribunal was able to inform the
public. But since it is still waiting for approval and the rules of procedure from the
Ministry of Justice, the Tribunal is not yet fully operational.

6.3    The Human Rights Commission

The National Human Rights Commission of Nigeria was established by the National
Human Rights Act in 1995. It is in line with the resolution of the General Assembly
of the United Nations which allows all member states to establish Human Rights
Institutions for the promotion and protection of human rights.

The Commission serves as a mechanism for the enhancement of the enjoyment of
human rights. Its establishment is aimed at creating an enabling environment for
extrajudicial recognition, promotion and protection and enforcement of human rights,
treaty obligations and providing a forum for public enlightenment and dialogue on
human rights issues thereby limiting controversy and confrontation.

Since its establishment, the Commission has demonstrated an expansive capacity to
tackle issues of human rights through various activities, ranging from public
enlightenment and education, investigation of complaints, mediation and
reconciliation, conflict resolution, peace building, research advocacy and training
programmes on contemporary issues in the field of human rights. These were given
effect through an effective complaint treatment mechanism, regular hosting of
enlightenment seminars, workshops, rallies and continuous re-engineering of the
strategies, culminating in the National Action Plan (NAP) on Human Rights as a mark
of government's commitment towards the promotion and protection of human rights.
The NAP is expected to be a benchmark on which Nigeria's Human Rights records
can be judged.

For effective performance and a result-oriented approach to its work, the Governing
Council of the Commission identified 15 main thematic areas of focus, including:
Women and Gender Matters; Children; Corruption and Good Governance; Police,

Prison and Other Detention Centres; Environment and Niger-Delta; Education;
Freedom of Religion and Belief; Torture, Extrajudicial, Summary and Arbitrary;
Executions; Law Reform and Law Review; Independence of the Judiciary and Access
to Justice; Labour; Food and Shelter; Communal Conflict and Other Related
Violence; Health; and Freedom of Expression and the Media. Special Reporters have
been appointed for 11 of these themes.

In order to achieve effectiveness in the discharge of its mandate, the Commission
established a working relationship with other relevant bodies quite early on, both in
the governmental and non-governmental sectors in the field of human rights. It works
in partnership with the Ministries of Education, Health, Women and Youth
Development, Interior, Justice, Foreign Affairs, Police Affairs, and others. Also, the
Commission collaborates with a number of international donor agencies and

At the time of the demolitions and evictions people came to the Human Rights
Commission and made a case to the government under the heading of ‘violation of
rights to shelter’. It was not a case against the ‘rights to land’, because under the Land
Use Act the land is legally owned by the government. The demands were:

     1. Provide those that are going to be evicted with enough notice;
     2. Provide them with alternatives;
     3. Provide infrastructure on the new location.

The government, however, was not very cooperative. It argued that people had
received an alternative place to live.

The Human Rights Commission tries to operate in a very diplomatic manner. It
prefers not to confront the Nigerian government. Instead, it tries to convince the
government to stop the demolitions through discussions. The Commission has also
written a letter asking for an end to the violation of human rights. The Commission is
of the opinion that the new government started off well: there have been no more
demolitions as of the end of 2007.

The Human Rights Commission argues that the Land Use Act is not in compliance
with human rights, and is working on a proposal for its revision. Take, for instance,
the issue of compensation: the Land Use Act states that the government can take away
someone’s land in the public interest and that this person will be compensated, but the
way that the amount is calculated is not correct. The calculations for the amount of
compensation are based on the rates of 1978, which were particularly low. They have
been reviewed, but the new rates are still very low. Also, the Land Use Act states that
all land belongs to the government and that the public can only obtain land in
leasehold. The Human Rights Commission advocates that everyone is entitled to land
in freehold. Therefore it is now negotiating a revision of the Land Use Act at the
federal level.

6.4    Conclusions

Overall, considering the scale of the problems the poor face in Abuja, only very little
has been implemented by international donors in the federal capital. And although it is
important that the capacity of the Nigerian government is being built up, international
support should not only focus on indirect results. It should also address the problems
the poor are facing and support and stimulate concrete actions and initiatives on the
ground that have a direct impact on the lives of many poor inhabitants of Abuja.

7      Major Findings and Observations

This chapter focuses on the main findings and conclusions drawn from participants’
observations, supported by desktop surveys and discussions with local stakeholders
who were approached during the process mapping.

7.1    A Recapitulation of the Main Questions and Methodology

The central question of this process mapping was: what are the main problems faced
by the poor in Abuja;
     What is the status of the provision of social housing and basic services, and
        resources such as formal credit, micro-credit, building materials?
     In addition, which organisations (NGOs, CBOs, public sector, and private
        sector) play a role in providing access?

The process mapping focused on the main problems the poor face in Abuja. This
means that our primary attention was focussed on rapidly auditing the situation in
order to disclose views and processes on evictions, the status of the social housing
supply and the provision of basic services in addition to access to resources like
formal credit, micro-credit, building materials and the role played by grassroots
organisations (NGOs, CBOs, CSOs, etc.) as well as other organisations from the
public and private sectors.

Nearly 60 individuals and 40 organisations were visited, interviewed and/or contacted
during the fieldwork. Prior to the fieldwork and in preparation to our visit to Abuja,
an extensive literature survey and desktop study was carried out in order to become
familiar with the local context and problems.

7.2    Government Policies and Community Participation

It is clear that access to land and housing is a major problem faced by the poor in

The transfer of the Federal Capital from Lagos to Abuja triggered a rapid and
significant migration of new inhabitants to the capital city and nearby areas. Neither
the new supply of housing nor the existing housing stock was sufficient to cope with
the large influx of low- and middle income earners to the capital.

The government had promised to provide housing, but was unable to keep up with the
demand. Additionally, there were no suitable housing credit and mortgage systems to
provide loans and mortgages to all those who needed housing but could not afford it.
The consequences can be observed today. There is overcrowding, housing prices are
high, there are peripheral developments and many informal buildings in the city.
Many people ended up illegally buying or renting a house or land from local chiefs.

Another problem is that of land tenure rights. The Land Use Act put all land under
government control, resulting in more scarcity of land and conflicts with the
indigenous population, whose rights to land in FCC have not been recognised. Even
in resettlement areas the inhabitants are not given C of O’s, so they will never own the

land they live on. This partly explains the pursuit of large-scale evictions and
resettlement of the indigenous population in peripheral areas. It also affected the lives
of new settlers who purchased a parcel of land and built a house in the indigenous
villages and had to face demolition without any form of compensation. The scarcity of
land and housing in the city is forcing individuals to resort to informal mechanisms
such as land transactions with chiefs and indigenous people and the construction of
illegal buildings as their only possibility to escape from overcrowding and high rents.

Insufficient public communication and inadequate information among the
communities make the situation even more volatile. The affected communities seem
to neither be properly informed about government intentions and plans nor about their
own rights, a fact that contributes to asymmetric decision-making processes.

Obstacles that hinder participation of target groups
  1. In Nigeria there is no tradition in participation. After the country gained
      independence in 1960 it was under military rule for 30 years. Therefore
      participation is a completely new concept in the country. Civil servants have
      difficulty applying it.
  2. There is no clear structure and framework in place through which participation
      can take place and it is not mandatory. Participation has not yet been clearly
      defined – what does it mean and how should it be applied? Full participation
      entails more than simply informing the public, which is how it is now being
  3. There seems to be a lack of trust between the government and the public.
  4. There is a lack of political commitment or willingness on the part of the
      government to share power.

The way forward
   1. Participatory planning is a new concept to civil servants and therefore they are
      not used to involving stakeholders in their decision-making processes. The
      processes and procedures should be made more transparent to reduce mistrust
      and lack of cooperation of the various stakeholders. The government argues
      that there is stakeholder participation in the selection of sites, designs of
      houses, etc., but according to many respondents to the process mapping survey
      only a few leaders are invited and these seem not to be the legitimate
      representatives of their respective communities. If this is true, it only confirms
      the lack of confidence and the mistrust that exist in the community and civil
   2. Eviction and resettlement are the prevailing answers to resolving conflicts
      between the land use plan of the capital and the existing settlements and
      unplanned occupations. This is only to be expected when a blueprint approach
      is endorsed by the planning authorities. However, even within the paramount
      development objectives of Abuja – as national capital and symbol of the new
      Nigeria – a look at the problem from a different angle and perspective should
      result in decisions that take both the needs and priorities of the local
      population and the goals of the national capital into account. Such angles
      could be, for instance, a cost-benefit analysis between resettlement and on-site
      urbanisation, respect for the existing social capital, livelihood proximity,
      participatory planning, etc. A more integrated view of development as a result

         of more consultation and flexibility in planning is proposed. Even a
         combination of resettlement and upgrading can be considered.
      3. Ideally, planning priorities should be combined with social priorities in order
         to generate sustainable outcomes and promote an integrated development of
         Abuja. Shouldn’t all of the different stakeholders share in decision-making,
         responsibility and commitment to a plan for an integrated inclusive city for all
         its inhabitants?
      4. In cases where no other option is available, participatory resettlement
         programmes in which communities are fully involved in the selection of the
         location, the design of the houses and the type/amount of compensation can be
         pursued. Relocatees must be able to build up their assets as an outcome of
         relocation, rather than destroying them.

7.3      NGOs, CBOs and Participation in Urban Governance

As described in chapter 5, the major NGOs collaborate on specific issues, such as the
large-scale evictions and demolitions. But overall, the way they operate and deal with
the government differs quiet substantially. Some are more confrontational, others
prefer to negotiate, and again others try to discuss issues through the mediation of
religious leaders.

Participation of the community in policymaking and the implementation of
programmes, although stimulated in some national and international programmes, is
rarely implemented in Abuja.

Capacities of NGOs and CBOs

Besides governmental aspects that hinder participation, we have also observed the
inadequacies of the communities, NGOs and CBOs, which lack capacity:

      1. Some of the NGOs lack the capacity to assess the needs of communities and to
         negotiate with the government.
      2. Local leaders sometimes seem to lack the capacity to assess the needs of the
      3. Another problem is that there seems to be lack of collaboration or solidarity
         among actors, in particular the local communities, which are not able to unite.

Collaboration among NGOs

NGOs could explore the possibilities of forming a network or a platform in order to
be stronger and more visible, thereby becoming an important stakeholder for the local
government to negotiate with. This network or platform should develop clear
objectives on what to collaborate on and should be a platform to discuss strategies to
reach their goals and support each other. The network should also have clear links to
CBOs, indigenous groups and slum federations.

Appendix 1 Interviews Conducted and Sites Visited

Tuesday 6 November

        Mrs Adeoti Amolola Mary, Justice Development and Peace Commission
        Ana Cletus at the JDPC office
        SERAC Daniel Mbee, Programme Officer of Housing, and Emmanuel
         Nwaghodoh, attorney
        Mrs Zaliahiu Ahmed, Secretary of the FCT Urban and Regional Planning

Wednesday 7 November

        Muhammed Jibrin, Division Head of Products and Markets, Aso Savings
        Mrs Pricilla Achakpa, Women Environment Programme (WEP)
        George Akor, Women Environment Programme (WEP)
        Meeting with six leaders of the Federation of the Poor (FEDUP) at the WEP

Thursday 8 November

        Mr Elobi, Acting Director of Survey and Mapping, Abuja Geographical
         Information System (AGIS)
        Prof Johnson Bade Falade, HPM Nigeria, UN-Habitat Programme Support
         Office (HAPSO)
        Barnabas Atiyaye, Programme Officer Secure Tenure, UN-Habitat
         Programme Support Office (HAPSO)
        Mr Onibokum, National Institute of Town Planning (NITP)

Friday 9 November

        Hassan M. Kida, Senior Sanitary Engineer, The World Bank
        Architect Terver Gemade, General Manager of Social Housing, Federal
         Housing Authority (FHA)
        Clement Shekogaza Wasah, Executive Director of CAPP

Saturday 10 November

        Bayo Aina, Lawyer at the Supreme Court and Estate Surveyor and Valuer
        Musa Barde, District Head (chief) of Galadimawa
        Astifanus Shigaji, Chief of Chika village

Monday 12 November

        Mr Abdulsalami Abdulrahmon Shola, Dept Director of the Department of
         Urban and Regional Planning, FCDA
        Mrs H.N. Obiechina, Chartered Town Planner, Department of Resettlement
         and Compensation, FCDA

        Mr Francis J. Okechukwu, Dept. Director of the Valuation and Compensation
         Division, Department of Resettlement and Compensation, FCDA
        Mr Sulaiman Abubakar, Director of the Department of Urban and Regional
        The FCDA
        Prince Gimba Gbaiza, Greater Abuja Indigenous Assembly

Tuesday 13 November

        Mr Adamu, Urban Planner of the Abuja Municipal Area Council
        HRH Emma K. Yepwi , Chief of Old Karu
        Chief Nikodemus Machi, Jikwoyi District Head
        Wole Aderinto, Urban Planner and Deputy Director of the Satellite Town
         Development Agency Karchi
        A.A. Yakubu, Assistant Director of Investigation, Human Rights Commission

Wednesday 14 November

        Visit with Prince Gimba Gbayiza to New Wuse or Sabo Wuse, a resettlement
         scheme in Niger State
        Dr Olatunbosun Ayileka, (FNITP) Chartered Town Planner, Ministry of
         Environment, Housing and Urban Development

Thursday 15 November

        A. Atsegbua, Chief Executive Officer, Society for Community Development

Monday 18 February 2008

        Mark Rutgers van der Loeff, Netherlands Embassy
        Mohamed Lawal Ahmed, Dept Director of Regional Planning, Department of
         Urban and Regional Planning, FCDA
        Joe Abah, Programme Coordinator Public Service Reform Programme-PSR
        Mrs Oluwakemi Asuni, Programme Administrator and Finance Assistant
         C4C-Coalitions for Change
        Mrs Amne Sambo Department of Transport, Federal Government
        Mrs Veronica, Head of Programme Department NAPEP, FCTA

Friday 22 February 2008

        Obi Ugochuku, SEEDS Adviser , The State and Local Government

Sites visited:

        Settlements where non-indigenes had been evicted but indigenes (still) remain:
         Galadimawa, Garki, Old Karu, Jiwa
        Resettlement sites for indigenes: Apo

        Relocation sites for non-indigenes
        Settlements facing eviction of indigenes and non-indigenes:
        Previous attempted slum-upgrading: Garki

Appendix 2 Contact List

Name           Organisation   Address        Telephone          Email
Mrs Adeoti     Justice        Area 2,        -        
Amolola        Development    Block 6 Flat
Mary           and Peace      1 Oba Close
               Commission     Abuja
Mrs Zaliahiu   FCT Urban      Bissau         08023014998
Ahmed          and Regional   Street, Zone
               Planning       6
               Tribunal       Wuse,

Muhammed       Aso Savings    Plot 266,      +234 9 2345158
Jibrin                        FMBN           0803-3112280
Division                      building
Head                          Cadastral
Products and                  Zone AO
Markets                       Central
Mrs Pricilla   Women          Block E flat   234 (9) 672 1633
Achakpa        Environment    2 Anambra      0802-3235798
               Programme      Court          0807-7741166
               (WEP)          Gudawa
                              Apo after
                              Garki Abuja
George Akor    Women          Block E flat   234 (9) 672 1633
               Environment    2 Anambra      0802-3235798
               Programme      Court          0807-7741166
               (WEP)          Gudawa
                              Apo after
                              Garki Abuja
Mr Elobi,      Abuja          -              -                  -
Acting         Geographical
Director       Information
Survey and     System
Mapping        (AGIS)

Prof Johnson   UN-Habitat     United         09-4616100 ex
Bade Falade,   Programme      Nations        6131     
HPM Nigeria    Support        House          234-802-309-3649
               Office         Plot
               (HAPSO)        617/618,


Barnabas        UN-Habitat      United        09-4616100 ex
Atiyaye         Programme       Nations       6132
Programme       Support         House         0803-4351213
Officer         Office          Plot          0802-3633964
Secure          (HAPSO)         617/618,
Tenure                          Diplomatic

Mr Onibokum     National        Bawa Bwari    -               -
                Institute of    house
                Town            Plot 2047
                Planning        Micheal
                (NITP)          Opawa
                                Wuse Zone

Mrs             FEDUP           Community:    0803-0915326    -
Magdalene                       Idu-Karmo
Abdulsalam      FEDUP           Jiwa          0802-8675011    -
Tanko                           Community
John D. Jezhi   FEDUP           Community:    0803-874238     -
Pastor          FEDUP           Kubwa         0803-650092     -
Sebastian                       Community
Tegbedayi       FEDUP           Chika         0803-4504733    -
Mrs Toneye      FEDUP           Chika         0802-0871866    -
Edith Ibine                     Community
Hassan M        The World       Plot 433      09-3145269-75
Kida            Bank            Yakubu        0803-3119185
Sr Sanitary                     Gowon
Engineer                        Cresent
                                Po box 2826

Architect       Federal         26 Julius     +234-93145020
Terver          Housing         Nyerere
Gemade          Authority       Cresent
General         (FHA)           Asokoro
Manager                         Abuja

Clement         Community       Plot 55A,           
Shekogaza       Action for      no 24 Borno         
Wasah,          Popular         Street
Executive       Participation   Area 10

Director         (CAPP)          Garki
                                 P.O box

Bayo Aina        Supreme         Block B,       -    
Lawyer and       Court, Abuja    flat 2 SCM
Estate                           Quarters,
Surveyor and                     Hyanya,
Valuer                           Abuja

HRH Emma         Royal father,   Sa-Karuyi      0802-6099192   -
K. Yepwi         Chief of Old    Palace PO
                 Karu            Box 126,
                                 Old Karu,
Abdulsalami      Federal         Area 11,       0805-5247760
Abdulrahmon      Capital         secretariat    0802-2231811
Shola,           Development     P.M.B
Dept Director    Authority       24 Garki
Department       (FCDA)          Abuja
of Urban and
Mrs H.N.         Federal         Area 11        0803-3093357
Obiechina,       Capital         Garki Abuja
Chartered        Development
Town Planner     Authority
Department       (FCDA)
Okechukwu        Federal         Area 11        0803-7882438
Francis J.,      Capital         Garki Abuja
Dept. Director   Development
Valuation and    Authority
Compensation     (FCDA)

Sulaiman         Federal         Area 11,       0805-9111463
Abubakar         Capital         secretariat,
Director         Development     P.M.B. 24
Department       Authority       Garki
of Urban and     (FCDA)          Abuja,
Regional                         PO Box
Planning                         5561
                                 Block 21/D
                                 Flat 10
                                 Ibrahim Alli
                                 Close Zone
                                 D Quarters

Prince Gimba    The Greater                     0802-3455914
Gbaiza          Abuja                           +234- 0802- 345-
                Indigenous                      5914     
Ibrahim         Abuja           Garki Abuja     0803-5898352
Adamu,          Municipal
Urban           Area Council
Planner         (AMAC)

TPL Oluwole     FCTA/STDA       Garki, area     0805-7753393
Aberinto                        2, selt 2,
A.A. Yakubu     Human           No. 19          234-9-4135939
Asst Director   Rights          Aguiyi-                  
Investigation   Commission      Ironsi Street                      www/
                                P.M.B. 444

Dr              Ministry of     Mobushi         0802-3118896
Olatunbosun     Environment,    District, P.O
Ayileka         Housing and     Box 491
(FNITP)         Urban           Garki
Chartered       Development     District
Town Planner                    Abuja

A. Atsegbua     Society for     Highbury        +234-8057801830
Chief           Community       Plaza           +234-8033141652
Executive       Development     Plot 104,       +234-9-671866
Officer         (SCD)           beside
                                Gado Nasco
                                Abuja, p.o
                                box 4339,
                                Garki Abuja

Felix Morka,    Social and      1A Ade          +234-1-7646299
Executive       Economic        Ajayi Street,   +234-1-4968605
Director        Rights Action   Ogudu           +234-1-5559457
                Centre          GRA, Lagos      +234-1-4968606
Musa Barde      Chief of                        0803-3362781
Astifanus       Chief of
Shigaij         Chika village
Nikodemus       Chief           Jikwoyi         0803-6083817
Machi,          Jikwoyi         District
Mark Rutgers    Netherlands     EU              +234-9-4611200
van der Loeff   Embassy         Common                    (tav Marjo
                                Embassy                            Crompvoets)

                                 Cresent, off
Mohamed         Department       Area 11,       0803-3289455
Lawan           of Urban and     secretariat,   0807-2375115
Ahmed, Dept     Regional         P.M.B. 24
Director        Planning,        Garki Abuja
Regional        FCDA

Joe Abah,       PSR              3rd floor,     +234-(9)-4136257
Programme                        Oakland        +234(0)8036680414
Coordinator                      Centre,
Public                           Aguiyi
Service                          Ironsi
Reform                           Street,
Programme-                       Maitama,
Mrs             C4C-             3rd floor,     +234-9-4136256
Oluwakemi       Coalitions for   Oakland        +234-803-3353476
Asuni,          Change           Centre,
Programme                        Aguiyi
Administrator                    Ironsi
and Finance                      Street,
Assistant                        Maitama,
Mrs Amne        Department                      0805-7440629
Sambo           of Transport,
Mrs Veronica,   National         Plot 1346,     09-6711339
Head of         Poverty          Ahmadu
Programme       Alleviation      Belloway
Department      Programme        Garki 2,
                (NAPEP),         Abuja
                FCTA             (Khadija
Obi             The State and    21 Usuma       234-9-4137389
Ugochuku,       Local            Street,        234-07083190283
SEEDS           Government       Maitama,
Adviser         Programme-       Abuja

Appendix 3 Conclusions and Participants IHS-Cordaid Workshop

20 February 2008, Aso Hall, Rockview Hotel, Abuja

Conclusions of working group discussions

Group 1: Capacity Building Needs
     Government: which capacities need to be built up: how can participatory,
      inclusive development planning be achieved?
     NGOs: what do they need, internal capacity building of staff and what type of
      capacity building?
     CBOs: what do they need?
     What role could Cordaid play here?

Okeke Ebele
George Akor
Adeoti Omola Mary
Felix Obiahu
Fashunu Okanlawon
Musa Barde
Joe Ohunri
Abdullah Ahmed


Include communicating
Appropriate negotiating skills
Government officers need to be competent, develop appropriate, relevant and
functional long-term planning

Training in negotiating with the government and CBOs
Capacities need to be built up in communication and organising skills
Administration/technical/financial capacities
Proposal writing
See and understand the needs of communities, needs assessments
Managing projects

Awareness of NGO and government programmes
Needs identification
Strengthening capacities in organising themselves
Mechanisms for strengthening their voice
Negotiating capabilities

Working group 2: Civil Society Participation in Planning

      How can we stimulate public participation in policymaking and
       implementations and what is required to make the planning process more
       participatory and to make it more open for stakeholder participation?
      What is the role Cordaid could play?

H. Obiechina
Zahliahiu Ahmed
Salami R Shola
W.A. Akinyemi
Nicodemus Machi
Ibrahim S. Adamu
Oluwole A. Aderinto
Are I.K. Umoga
Mohid Lawan Ahmed
Felix Morko

    Enlighten the public on planning processes; educate the people very well on
      details of plans, benefits and effects by government officials to have
      successful project implementation
    Adequate funding of planning processes and projects
    Public should be adequately informed of projects from the inception
    Regular stakeholder conferences for all projects
    Re-orientation of professionals to invite best practises and be transparent in all
      project planning and implementation
    There should be cohesive policy framework for plan implementation
    Reconsider integration instead of resettlement
    Prepare planning models for communities to comment on
    Collaboration between government officials and NGOs and CBOs to forestall
      political decisions as well as information disseminations to NGOs and CBOs
    Village hall meetings with government officials

Role of Cordaid
    Advisory role to the government agencies/organisations
    Training government officials on specific needs (both top-management and
        middle cadre)
    Organise interactive seminars/workshops with other countries to share
        common experiences

Group 3: Linking and Learning
    Is there a need to strengthen their collaboration, if yes, how could his be
    Is there a need to strengthen the linkages between NGOs and CBOs, if yes,
      how could this be stimulated?
    What is that role that Cordaid could play?

Emmanuel Nwaghodoh
Dr Olabutosun Ayileka
HRH Emmanuel Kyanta Jepwi
Mrs Ibine
Tegbedenyi S. Yararbu
Clement Wasah
Prince Gimbo Gbaiza
Morenike Babalola
Samuel James

First a situation analysis is required: lack of access to land, inadequate housing, dearth
of social amenities, indigenes/migrants, absence of platform for collaboration,
suspicion by communities, mistrust.

What to do:
Set up a platform of NGOs/CBOs
Raise awareness
Establish and build CBO capacity
Federate CBOs (for ownership)

Role NGOs:
Capacity building
Lead linking and learning activity

Role Cordaid:
Provide finance
Build up technical capacity
Provide global linkage

Participants IHS-Cordaid Workshop 20 February

     Name                  Organisation   Address        Telephone       Email
1    Mrs Adeoti Amolola    Justice        Area 2,        -     
     Mary                  Development    Block 6              
                           and Peace      Flat 1 Oba
                           Commission     Close
                           (JDPC)         Abuja
2    Okeke Ebele           JDPC           Area 2,        -     
                                          Block 6
                                          Flat 1 Oba
3    Mrs Zaliahiu Ahmed    FCT Urban      Bissau         0802-3014998
                           and Regional   Street,
                           Planning       Zone 6
                           Tribunal       Wuse,

4    Joe Ohunri            Development    355 Agege      -     
                           Concern        Motor
                           Nigeria        Road,
5    Adiatu Adesina        Sina Adiatu    Suite 3D,      0803-4044331
                           & Co (Estate   Copper
                           Surveyors &    house, 4,
                           Valuers)       Algiers
                                          Street Zone
                                          S, Wuse,
6    George Akor           Women          Block E flat   234 (9) 672
                           Environment    2 Anambra      1633  
                           Programme      Court          0802-3235798,
                           (WEP)          Gudawa         0807-7741166
                                          Apo after
7    Prof Johnson Bade     UN-Habitat     United         09-4616100 ex
     Falade, HPM Nigeria   Programme      Nations        6131  
                           Support        House          234-802-309-
                           Office         Plot           3649
                           (HAPSO)        617/618,

8    Bello Meshach         Federal        Mabushi        0802-9144777
                           Ministry of    Abuja
                           Housing &

9    Fashanu Okanlawon         FCDA            New Karo,     0805-9522108
10   Morenike Balbalolo        FEDUP                         -               -
11   Mrs Toneye Edith Ibine    FEDUP           Chika         0802-0871866    -
12   Clement Wasah,            Community       Plot 55A,     -     
     Executive Director        Action for      no 24               
                               Popular         Borno
                               Participation   Street
                               (CAPP)          Area 10
                                               P.O box

13   Bayo Aina                 Supreme         Block B,      -     
     Lawyer and Estate         Court           flat 2 SCM
     Surveyor and Valuer       Abuja           Quarters,
14   Abdulsalami               Federal         Area 11,      08055247760
     Abdulrahmon Shola,        Capital         secretariat   08022231811
     Dept Director             Development     P.M.B
     Department of Urban and   Authority       24 Garki
     Regional Planning         (FCDA)          Abuja

14   Mrs H.N. Obiechina,       Federal         Area 11       0803-3093357
     Chartered Town Planner    Capital         Garki
     Department of             Development     Abuja
     Resettlement and          Authority
     Compensation              (FCDA)

16   Prince Gimba Gbaiza       The Greater     -              08023455914,
                               Abuja                         +234 0802 345
                               Indigenous                    5914  
17   Ibrahim S. Adamu, Urban   Abuja           Garki         0803-5898352
     Planner                   Municipal       Abuja
                               Area Council
18   TPL Oluwole Aberinto      FCTA/STDA       Garki, area   0805-7753393    -
                                               2, selt 2,
19   Dr Olatunbosun Ayileka    Ministry of     Mobushi       0802-3118896
     (FNITP)                   Environment,    District,
     Chartered Town Planner    Housing and     P.O Box
                               Urban           491
                               Development     Garki

20   A. Atsegbua               Society for     Highbury      +234- 
     Chief Executive Officer   Community       Plaza         8057801830
                               Development     Plot 104,     +234- 
                               (SCD)           beside        8033141652
                                               abattoir      +234-9-671866

                                              Abuja, p.o
                                              box 4339,
21   Felix Morka, Executive   Social and      1A Ade         +234.1.7646299
     Director                 Economic        Ajayi          +234.1.496.8605
                              Rights Action   Street,        +234.1.555.9457
                              Centre          Ogudu          +234.1.496.8606
                              (SERAC)         GRA,
22   Emmanuel Nwaghodoh       SERAC                                  
23   Samuel James             SERAC                                  
24   Musa Barde               Chief of                       0803-3362781
25   Nikodemus Machi,         Chief           Jikwoyi        0803-6083817
                              Jikwoyi         District
26   W.A. Akinyemi,           Lands Bureau    Block 13,      01-4979030-9
     Dept Director Lands      Land Use &      1st fllor,     (ext 5560)
     Governor’s Office        Allocation      room 8         0802-319-6712
                              Committee       The
                              Office          secretariat,
27   Mohamed Lawan Ahmed,     Department      Area 11,       0803-3289455
     Dept Director Regional   of Urban and    secretariat,   0807-2375115
     Planning,                Regional        P.M.B. 24
                              Planning,       Garki
                              FCDA            Abuja

28   TPL Morenike Babulola,   Fed Ministry    Mabushi,       0803-370-6252
     Urban and Regional       of              Abuja
     Development Department   Environment,
                              Housing &
29   Arc I.K. Umoga           STDA            STDA           0805-7755954
30   Ana Cletus               -               -              -                 -
31   HRH Emma K. Yepwi        Royal father    Sa-Karuyi      0802-6099192      -
                                              Palace PO
                                              Box 126,
                                              old Karu,
32   Felix Obiahu             FAD             Blok 110       0803-7031194      -
                              developers      flat 3, OAU
                                              Wuse 2,
33   Fanny Meeus              Cordaid         P.O.Box        +31-70-31365
                                              16440          96      
                                              2500 BK
                                              The Hague

                                           Burgwal 10
                                           2512 CB
                                           The Hague

34   Arc. Rita Omono       REAOE           Block 5,      2348072320267
     Afejuku-Egbe          Associates      Flat B,
                           Abuja,          Herygsa
                           Architects,     Street,
                           Planners,       Zone 5,
                           Engineers,      Wuse,
                           project         P.O Box
                           Managers,       1637 Garki,
                           development     Abuja
35   Dr Maartje van Eerd   Institute for   P.O Box       +31-10-4021533
                           Housing and     1935 3000            
                           Urban           BX
                           Development     Rotterdam,
                           Studies (IHS)   the


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Abumere, S.I. (2002), ‘Resettlement then and now’, in The review of Abuja Master
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Agbola, T. (2001), ‘A profile of violence, urban security and prevention in the city of
         Abuja, Nigeria’, in Report on the launching of the global campaign for good
         urban governance in Nigeria, UNCHS, Fountain Publications, Ibadan,
Boulle, J. (2007), Nigeria housing feasibility study, Misereor.
Coalitions for Change (C4C), Creating spaces where voices connect.
COHRE (2006), Nigeria: housing rights fact sheet, media release: Nigeria named a
         2006 Housing Rights Violator for persistent, widespread forced evictions,
DFID (2004), Country assistance plan for Nigeria.
Fowler, D. (2008), The myth of the Abuja Master Plan. Nigeria, forced evictions as
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