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FCTA decries use of arts centre as drinking joint

Cyprian Ekwensi Centre for Arts and Culture in Garki, Abuja has been warned by the Federal Capital Territory Administration against the use of the Centre as a drinking joint by shop owners.

Ibrahim Masari, the Mandate Secretary, Social Development Secretariat, FCTA, gave the warning during an emergency meeting with business operators and shop owners at the secretariat in Abuja on Wednesday.

Masari, thereafter, designated 7.30 p.m. as the daily closing hour for all business and shop owners operating within the complex due to security concerns.

On October 29, at approximately 7:10 p.m., he made an impromptu visit to the secretariat and conveyed his dismay at the degree of lawlessness that was occurring there.

He explained that the visit was to affirm the veracity of the information at his disposal about the heinous acts that happen in the complex at late hours of the night.

He said, “To my dismay, I discovered more than 500 persons within the complex at such late hours, enjoying themselves with alcoholic drinks and smoking indiscriminately.

“I asked a few of the on-duty private security personnel to help me disperse the gathering after I waited patiently until around 8:30 p.m. and saw no indications that they would be leaving anytime soon.

The mandate secretary said the 7.30pm closing hour would take effect on Thursday (today), advising members of the public to take note to avoid embarrassment from security personnel.

He also said that the civil service rule forbids the sale of alcohol or any other intoxicating substances within working premises.

He added that an internal mechanism has been activated to sanction business owners who encourage such lawlessness and disregard for the existing rules.

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Comfort Samuel

I work with TV360 Nigeria, as a broadcast journalist, producer and reporter. I'm so passionate on what I do.

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