We are thinking in the same line with President Tinubu’s Renewed Hope Housing Agenda – Governor Fubara

…As Managing Director, Federal Housing Authority,Hon Oyetunde Ojo visits Rivers State

The Governor of Rivers State,  His Excellency, Sir Siminalayi Fubara, says Rivers State will fully support the Renewed Hope Agenda of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu (GCFR).

He disclosed this on Wednesday, 10th April, 2024 when the Managing Director and Chief Executive of Federal Housing Authority, Hon. Oyetunde Oladimeji Ojo paid him a visit in continuation of the agency’s consultation with State Governors towards  the Renewed Hope Agenda programme of President Tinubu.

Hon. Ojo, in his address to the governor, commended him for the great sense of focus he has displayed in governance within the short period he assumed office. 

The FHA Chief Executive listed out the Governor’s infrastructural development,  timely payment of pensioners, and enhanced security in the state, among other things, as the areas he has  made instant marks in the state. 

The MD informed Governor Fubara that the main reason for the visit was to bring President Bola Ahmed Tinubu’s Renewed Hope Agenda message on Housing to Rivers State, which is all about providing affordable houses to Nigerians, pointed out that the state is the thirteenth he is visiting with his team in under one month. 

Hon. Ojo reiterated Mr. President’s determination not only to tackle the nation’s housing deficit, but giving Nigerians affordable and livable houses. According to him, “We bring you Mr President’s mandate of Renewed Hope, which is affordable housing. Right now, in Nigeria, we lack adequate shelter, which is why the President has chosen us to help tackle the issue.”

The FHA boss pointed out the strategic importance of Rivers State with its peculiar terrain to the economic life of the country and noted the need for affordable houses in the state for the good of the citizens. 

The MD therefore told His Excellency, Governor Fubara, that the Authority has come to ask for land from Rivers State for the purpose of delivering the Renewed Hope Housing project. 

Hon. Ojo explained to the Governor the new developmental inclusiveness policy of the FHA, where the Authority consults with the State Governments for inputs in designs before any project is sited. He said that the Authority would does not wish to stay in Abuja and design what they like for the people of Rivers. 

In his words, the MD told the governor, “One of the reasons why we are here today is to solicit for land. We do not want you to just give us land. We want, like I said, to sit with your management team to come up with the right designs that will be tailored towards what the Rivers people need”.

Hon. Ojo also informed the Governor of the Authority’s Diaspora City initiative, where a certain percentage of the land given for projects would be dedicated to building for our diasporians and other privileged Nigerians. This, he said, would benefit our people in diaspora, some of whom have fallen into the hands of fraudsters in their quest to have befitting accommodation back home.

FHA, the MD told Mr Governor, is in advanced discussion with the Nigerians In Diaspora Commission and the Federal Ministry of Tourism towards this. He noted that with the Authority’s digitization, the Diasporians would have seamless transaction with FHA from the comfort of their respective locations and also be able to monitor and track their investments. 

Hon. Ojo also told Governor Fubara that FHA wants to capitalise on the value chain of construction to help fight inflation in the country. He noted that by the time these sporadic massive constructions would start across the country, numerous direct and indirect jobs would be created.

The Managing Director equally informed the Governor that most of the contracts would be given to contactors from Rivers State. This, he said, apart from helping boost the state’s economy, would create a sense of ownership of the project, and the people would also know those to hold accountable. 

The MD also emphasized the apolitical stand of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu on this project. Mr. President, he noted, sees this as a critical Nigerian project devoid of political colouration. He noted further that the  FHA team has visited 13 states that are APC,  PDP,  NNPP,  and Labour Party controlled, pointing to the non-partisan nature of the Renewed Hope Agenda programme. 

On the designs and models of delivery,  Hon. Ojo told the governor that the Authority remains resolute in the decision to consider Nigerians in the lower rung of the economy by building Studio, One Bedroom apartments, and carcass. He maintained that expensive finishing would not be imposed on Nigerians. FHA would do a prototype exterior, plumbing, and electricals, while respective allottees would do the finishing according to their individual tastes and resources. 

Finally, the MD informed His Excellency that the Authority has ready off – takers for the project and would also like the collaboration of the State in profiling off-takers . “We will make you proud. We will come back to sit with you once you give us land. We will call you for the ground breaking, and President Tinubu will surely be your guest”. The MD concluded. 

The governor, in his response, thanked the FHA team for coming to the state to discuss such an important issue of nation building. He thanked the President for the Renewed Hope initiative and expressed great concern over the issue of housing challenges in the country. In the Governor’s words, “I am really happy this evening not minding the timing, to discuss such an important issue of nation building”.

Governor Fubara noted that the issue of housing is becoming more challenging in the country due to high cost of living, and as such, all levels of government need to come down to tackle. “In our country today, because of the high cost of living,  housing has become an issue, the medium income earner can not even afford them. All levels of government need to come down to tackle it.” He opined.

The Governor noted that his government is thinking along the same line with Mr President. He said that they are thinking of making provision for all segments of the populace,  including the civil servants, traders, taxi drivers etc. He said that “…receiving a delegation from FHA is cheering to us. I want to assure you that we will be part of this project.” He noted.

The Governor expressed happiness for the proactive and business oriented disposition of the Authority’s presentation, and reaffirmed his Government’s commitment to work with FHA. In his words, “your demands are very simple. We are dealing with a team that is very serious to develop. They want the contractors to come from us. They want to partner us for off- takers. I want to assure you that we will work with you.”

Governor Fubara was also pleased with the Authority’s proposal to sit with the state for input in designs. He said it shows the seriousness FHA’s Management, that has great interest in its end product meeting the desires of those it is building for. 

Finally,  the Governor said, “I assure you of all the support you would need. Our message to the President is that we will support the project to be a successful  legacy of his administration. ” He concluded.

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