Head of Civil Service of the Federation, Alhaji Isa Sali Bello has as part of the on-going Civil Service week celebrations commissioned 246 housing units for Officers of the service at two different estates in Abuja, yesterday.
Commissioning the estates named after the past two female Head of Service, Ms Amal Pepple presently the Minister of Land, Housing and Urban Development and Engineer Ebele Okeke, Alhaji Bello stated that developing countries have over the years faced challenges of housing delivery for the greater majority of their citizens especially those on the low income level.
According to him, “Housing remains one of the basic necessities for all human beings and its provisions at affordable rate remains a critical element of good governance which this administration has resolved to implement through the transformation agenda. Implementing this critical component through PPP is another hall mark of this administration which must be saluted by all.
“Given the critical role that public servants play in the implementation of policies and programmes of government, the creation of an enabling environment for them to own their homes is a commitment by government towards the promotion of their welfare.
“I have been informed that prices of these houses are truly affordable as they are the cheapest houses available anywhere in the FCT. I am convinced that the prices of these houses and others being constructed for public servants in the FCT can be further reduced if the minister of FCT provides land for the public private partnership that has started between indigenous private developers and the Federal Government Staff Housing Loans Board.”
He however appealed to the National Assembly to consider legislating the promotion of synergy between the Federal Government Staff Housing Loans Board and the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria, so that the contributors to the national housing fund would have access to their contributions by facilitating the utilization of such contributions.
The housing estates were financed under the Federal Government Staff Housing Loans Scheme through Public Private Partnership with private developers whom civil servants identified themselves.
In his address, FCT Minister Senator Bala Mohammaed noted that the FCT has housing deficit and had given lands to all ministries and departments that requested for them, especially the paramilitary organisations
He added that president Jonathan has revived the Satellite Towns Development Agency to accelerate the development of the area councils and provision of affordable housing.