President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday approved the allocation of housing units in the National Housing Estate across the country to 22 members of the Super Eagles who won the 1994 African Cup of Nations.
The president spoke during the official commissioning of housing projects under the National Housing Programme (NHP) Phase 1 at the Three Arms Zone in Minna.
Represented by the Minister of State of Foreign Affairs, Amb. Zubairu Dada, the president stated that the members of the Super Eagles would be free to select any house in any of the houses in the housing projects across the country.
“This provides an opportunity to remember our heroes, the valiant Super Eagles to whom our country made a promise of providing housing for winning the 1994 African Cup of Nations, which has remained unfulfilled.
“On behalf of the Federal Government of Nigeria, I feel proud and privileged to redeem the promise Nigeria made to these patriotic Nigerians, even if belatedly. As the saying goes, it is better late than never and I have approved allocation to redeem the outstanding allocation to 22 members of the Super Eagles in National Housing Estate located in their state of choice. Their keys and title documents will be handed over at the commissioning in their state while the remainder of the housing is allocated to willing members of the public,” he said.
The president stated that the housing estate “is an example of the fulfillment of the promise of change and to provide affordable and accessible housing to Nigerians.
“This is one of the projects undertaken by our government in phases since 2016 when our party, the APC sought your mandate to form the government in 2015, one of the things we promised was change.
“We certainly cannot meet every one of those Nigerians in person, but our economic policies and investment in infrastructures such as this National Housing Programme and others will reach and positively impact many of the people.”
Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Raji Fashola said that the ministry “is undertaking the construction of over 6,000 housing units in 45 sites, out of which 2,465 units have been completed in 35 states and the FCT”.
He stated that more than 1,200 building contractors had been engaged under three phases of the programme since its inception in 2016, adding that more than14,500 direct and 50,140 indirect jobs had been created.
Fashola, who was represented by the Zonal Director South-West, Mr Mohammed Mohammed, said that more than 80 units of houses comprising four units of one-bedroom, 52 units of two-bedroom, 20 units three bedroom and four units three-bedroom bungalows had been completed and and handed over to the state government.
“In 34 states, the federal government, through the Ministry of works and Housing, has delivered projects such as this with the support of the state governors who provided the land,” he said.
He stated that the building contracts were awarded in November 2016 at the cost of N764.6 million while the infrastructural contracts were awarded in May 2017 at the cost of N484.8 million.
The minister said that the housing units were offered to the public in a non-discriminatory way by opening the National Housing Portal to ensure that those interested were not inhibited.
The Governor of Niger, Alhaji Abubakar Bello, who was represented by his deputy, Alhaji Ahmed Getso, commended Buhari’s administration for closing the gap in housing deficit in Nigeria pointing out that the project would meet the need for shelter to the populace.