Mass housing: Committee to submit white paper within 3 weeks

HOUSE3By Stanley Onyekwere

In a bid to meet the housing needs of the residents in Federal Capital Territory (FCT), the FCT Administration has inaugurated a 14-Member white paper committee on mass housing scheme.

The committee has three weeks to submit its report, to help revolutionize the Abuja mass housing sub-sector.

Inaugurating the Committee, the FCT Permanent Secretary, John Chukwu, said the white paper would give the FCT mass housing scheme the character and direction it desires in conformity to the Abuja Master Plan.

He added that part of the terms of reference of the committee is to critically examine the conclusions and recommendations of the ministerial committee, as it guided the provisions of mass housing development guidelines for FCT; guidelines for final engineering design of infrastructure for the Federal Capital City (FCC) and Satellite Towns; FCT development control manual as well as generate conclusions that will represent the position of the FCT Administration.

According to him, to address all identified myriad of problems facing the sector, the FCT minister, Senator Bala Mohammed, constituted a ministerial committee in October 2011, to carefully examine the challenges confronting the Territory’s housing sub-sector.

Chukwu recalled that the FCT Administration introduced the scheme in year 2000 to facilitate the provision of affordable houses to meet the increasing demand for shelter by the ever-rising influx of people into the Territory.

He expressed worry that the objectives behind the initiative have not been fully realized within the expected time frame because the Scheme has been beset by myriad of gaps and deficient structures.

According to him, the Scheme was confronted with implementation challenges which culminated in the emergence of illegal and unplanned settlements masquerading “as mass housing estates” across the city.

He said when the white paper is in place, there would be drastic but positive change to improve in the service delivery in that sub-sector in line with the transformation agenda of President Goodluck Jonathan.

Responding, the Chairman of the committee, who is also the Director of Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA) Engineering Services department, Adamu Alfa Abu, pledged to live up the expectations of the FCT Administration.

Peoples Daily reports that other members of the Committee include the FCT Solicitor-General, MD Abuja Property Development Company, Directors of Urban & Regional Planning; Land Administration; Mass Housing; Public Building; Satellite Towns Development Agency; Resettlement & Compensation; Development Control as well as SSA (Technical) HMS office; SA (Project) HM Office and SA (Lands) PS Office.

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