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Court orders Kaduna to compensate traders over demolition of shops in 2017

Court orders Kaduna to compensate traders over demolition of shops in 2017
September 29
22:52 2022

A Kaduna state high court has ordered the Kaduna state government to compensate traders for the demolition of shops in Kasuwan Barchi market.

The state government, in 2017, was said to have taken over the Kasuwan Barchi market in Kaduna south LGA, and handed it over to private developers to demolish and construct a modern market.

The traders had then challenged the state government’s power to do so in the Kaduna high court.

They had asked the court to determine whether the establishment, maintenance and regulations of markets is vested on the state government.

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The court, at the time, ordered that all respondents to the case should stop “entering into and demolishing Kasuwar Barchi, pending the hearing and determination of the case”.

Delivering judgment on the matter on Wednesday, Edward Andoo, the presiding judge, ruled that constitutionally, markets are under the jurisdiction of LGAs and that section 7 of the 1999 constitution gives the control and management of markets to LGAs.

The court also asked the state government to appropriately compensate traders at the market whose shops were demolished.

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Speaking after the judgment, Gideon Solomon, one of the lawyers for the traders, said the traders, in 2017, sought for an injunction to restrain the government from demolishing the market.

“But while the motion was still pending, the state government went ahead and demolished the market and commenced construction,” he said.

The lawyer added that some of the traders whose shops were demolished had been in the market for more than 30 years.

“They rented the place from the LGA and used their resources to construct their shops,” he said.

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“Every year they pay ground rent to the government, acknowledging the fact that the legal title belong to the LGA.”

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