The President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), on Tuesday, in Abuja, said his regime had delivered change to
Nigerians, especially in the area of affordable housing.
Appraising his regime’s performance in office during the inauguration of a housing estate in Zuba, Abuja, on Tuesday, the President claimed that the new housing estate was addressing multidimensional poverty among the citizens.
But the opposition parties described his claims as bogus, insisting that he performed woefully.
Presenting keys to the new homeowners at the Federal Housing Authority, Zuba, Buhari said, “I convey my hearty congratulations to the new homeowners in this estate. Our promise of change has been fulfilled for you.’’
The President also said the new housing estate was addressing multidimensional poverty as the beneficiaries had “taken a step up on the ladder of prosperity and away from poverty.’’
The PUNCH reports that the N9.5bn estate, which is located on 18.5 hectares of land, consists of 16 blocks of three-bedroom flats in a block of eight flats, 32 blocks of two-bedroom flats in a block of eight flats; 14 blocks of one-bedroom flats in a block of 16 flats and five blocks of terrace duplexes in four rows.
Buhari, who has less than 27 days left in office, pointed out that investments in housing created employment opportunities for artisans and other skilled members of society.
He urged residents of the estate to consciously work together with the FHA to ensure the maintenance of the property and the safety of the environment.
He stated, ‘’Housing supply is one of the indices of multidimensional poverty that challenges our people and the completion of this estate provides a solution for the beneficiaries.
‘‘The new homeowners who benefit from this estate have taken a step up on the ladder of prosperity and away from poverty.
‘‘One of the measures that we have consciously deployed to attack poverty, create prosperity and develop our economy is the aggressive provision of infrastructure nationwide.
Commending the Chairman, Managing Director, Members of the Board and Staff of FHA on the successful completion of the estate, the President noted that the project was another testament to his regime’s commitment to lifting people out of poverty.
On his part, the Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, said 75 contractors were engaged in the project, while over 13,000 Nigerians were employed both directly and indirectly.
He also thanked the President for providing leadership through his approval of appointments to the leadership of the FHA Board and Management.
The Managing Director and Chief Executive Office of FHA, Senator Gbenga Ashafa, described the project as a manifestation of the regime’s deliberate housing policy in line with the promise of providing shelter to Nigerians.
He said the Authority delivered the project at a total cost of N9.5bn with the subvention of N7.5bn from the Federal Government.
The balance of N2bn of construction cost came from the Authority’s other projects, which were ploughed to complete the estate.
In his remarks, the Chairman of the Board of Directors, FHA, Senator Shuaibu Lawal, thanked the President for providing the grant of N7.5bn for the project to commence in May 2018.
But the Peoples Democratic Party, Labour Party and Social Democratic Party took a swipe at the President over his self-commendation, saying Nigerians did not take him seriously anymore.
The PDP National Secretary, Senator Samuel Anyanwu, said, “Here is a man who promised to fight insecurity. Is the country safe and secure today? He said he would fight corruption and revive the economy. What is the situation today? The man has nothing more to offer apart from laying claims to achievements that no one is aware of.”
The Chief Spokesman for the Obi-Datti Presidential Campaign Council, Yunusa Tanko, believed Buhari’s latest action was a clear display of mediocrity and ineptitude.
He noted, “How can he say that when many people are living under bridges? Is he even aware of how many people we have in IDP camps that have not been resettled? I am sorry to say this. But this is mediocrity and ineptitude at play.
“There is no justification for probably providing housing for all. We are far behind in terms of deficit. President Buhari’s statement is not justifiable, please. Giving himself a pass mark at this stage is self-gratifying.”