Abuja to rank among best 20 cities by 2020, says Akinjide

Minister of State for the FCT, Mrs Olajumoke Akinjide, said on Tuesday in Abuja that the FCT Administration would make the territory one of the best 20 cities in the world by the year 2020.

Akinjide said this at the formal launch of the Enumeration of Advertising Signs and Hoardings in the FCT.

She said that the process was part of efforts being made to sanitise the practice of outdoor advertising in the territory in line with the Transformation Agenda of President Goodluck Jonathan.

“It further demonstrates our determination to build a capital city that will rank among the 20 best cities in the world by the year 2020.’’

Akinjide said that by the launch, the FCTA had set in motion the machinery to standardise outdoor advertising in the territory.

She said that the main objective of the exercise included improving the internally generated revenue profile of the FCT Administration, sanitising its environment and checking impunity in the practice.

She said that the exercise would be carried out through the deployment of customised bicycles manned by National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) members.

The minister said that the corps members being deployed for the exercise had been trained in data gathering, adding that the project would be managed by the FCT Department of Outdoor Advertisement and Signage (DOAS), in collaboration with Geoqynetiq Limited.

She said the exercise would cover three main areas of the city centre which are Maitama District, Airport Road and Bill Clinton Drive as well as some selected areas of the six area councils in the FCT.

According to her, the exercise also entails a head count of all first and third party advertisements identified in the various districts.

She appealed to all stakeholders, especially the media, to mobilise support for the DOAS towards the realisation of its goals.

The minister said that doing so would lead to the sanitisation of the outdoor advertising industry in the FCT.

In his remark, the Director, DOAS, Malam Ibrahim Yusuf, said that the bicycles had been insured, adding that the safety of the corps members was also guaranteed.

Yusuf said that the choice of corps members in carrying out the exercise was to create jobs as the best of them could be retained.

Also speaking, the Head of Geoqynetiq, Mr Jerome Okoro, said that the software to be used for the exercise was one of the best and was aimed at effectively managing outdoor advertisement business in the FCT.

Okoro said that the software also has a map of the FCT with a satellite link which could gather data at a distance. (NAN)

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