By Mashe Umaru Gwamna
The Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola has urged the newly inaugurated Federal Housing Authority executives to complete about 760 housing units under Federal Housing Project in Zuba, Abuja who it inherited.
Fashola said this at the inauguration ceremony of the newly appointed Executive Management Team of the Federal Housing Authority (FHA) yesterday in Abuja.
According to Fashola, President Muhammadu Buhari had given all the budgetary support that would see to its completion.
He said Ashafa and his colleagues had all the requisite skills to deal with all of the challenges in the sector since they had served in many capacities that related to lands and housing.
He also called on them to ensure the maintenance of the existing structures which create opportunity for job creation especially for artisans.
“Maintenance of existing assets and buildings is a very important policy of this government now, we see it as an opportunity for empowering people at the bottom of the pyramid through continuous strategic maintenance.
“So that all your existing estates must now be subject to this programme already approved by the Federal Executive Council.
“That is where we can impact one of the most venerable people, some of the 100 million people that the president has challenged us to lift out of poverty.’’
Fashola also urged the team to take responsibility and be subject to parliamentary oversight noting that the ministry would not interfere with the operations of the agency but would intervene when they via off course.
He added that all financial procurement must be as approved by the board of FHA.
Sen. Sam Egwu, Chairman, Senate Committee on Housing in his welcome address noted that though the challenge of housing deficit in the country was alarming, he was happy with the team in charge of the sector.
He said the team led by a minister that was focussed would resolve the challenges being faced by the sector in providing affordable houses to the people.
Egwu pledged the committee would collaborate with the ministry and other parastetals in solving the housing needs in the country.
The executives are Sen. Olugbenga Ashafa, Managing Director, Mr Abdulmumuni Jubrin, Executive Director, Business Development and Mr Moris Okpong, Head Finance.
In his acceptance speech, Sen. Olugbenga Ashafa, the new Managing Director, FHA, appreciated the president trust reposed on him and his colleagues. “May I also note that i have watched with great interest the initiatives and innovations that the Honourable Minister has continually brought to bear on the housing development across the country.
“It is in support of this new direction that my colleagues and i hereby pledge our unalloyed support and commitment to the PMB-led administration’s vision of providing affordable and accessible housing for Nigerians.
“As we resume our appointments, we look forward to a harmonious working relationship with the board, Management and staff of the Federal Housing Authority as well as all the relevant stakeholders,’’ Ashafa said.