It is my pleasure to join you here today on the occasion of the Flag-Off of the construction of 100 Housing Estate in Kwandere by the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN), taking place here in Kwandere, Lafia the State capital.
2. Let me commend the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria for selecting Nasarawa as one of its pilot States to benefit from this initiative of affordable housing scheme for Nigerian workers. I understand that the scheme is designed to give out houses to deserving salary earners who are contributors to the National Housing Fund (NHF) nationwide on ‘Rent-to-Own’ basis within the period of thirty (30) years. I was also informed that the pilot scheme is intended to give out three thousand (3000) houses to three thousand (3000) workers who have fulfilled the requisite criteria across Nigeria.
3. I most commend the efforts of the Federal Government and, indeed, the Federal Mortgage Bank for this laudable initiative aimed at alleviating the sufferings of public servants who have to contain with the ever-increasing house rents vis-à-vis their meager take-home salary. I am also aware that the Federal Mortgage Bank has been issuing house renovation loans to deserving civil servants in the country.
4. I have no doubt that laudable initiatives such as these by FMBN are strategic to the Federal Government’s determination to provide affordable accommodation to Nigerian workers. This commitment, which is in line with Government policy on reinventing the Public Service, will be a moral buster to energize civil servants towards effective and efficient service delivery and enhanced productivity.
5. Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, realizing the importance of housing to the workforce, our Administration in the State has remained relentless in ensuring that our public servants get affordable and comfortable accommodation. It is for this reason that, when we came on board, we off-set the backlog of the contractual agreement on the 500 Housing Units at Doma road, Lafia which facilitated the prompt completion of the project. This enabled our deserving workers to secure accommodation at the Estate on owner-occupier basis, thereby mitigating the accommodation problem hitherto faced by our workers. In addition, we released a substantial amount of money for the beneficiaries to carryout renovation works on the houses to their own taste. This was based on our conviction that a worker with a befitting accommodation is more inclined to give his all in the implementation of Government policies and programmes.
6. The 100 Housing Units which flag-off we are witnessing today will, therefore, go a long way in addressing the housing deficit faced by Nigerian workers. It is my belief that, with initiatives such as this, the Federal Housing Fund (FHF) will soon achieve the purpose for which it was envisaged as it will provide respite to the workforce.
7. At this juncture, let me assure workers in Nasarawa State that this Administration is poised to providing their welfare in all ramifications until the end of our tenure. This is so because, without the civil servant, the effective and efficient implementation of our policies and programmes will face a brick wall. The civil servant, thus, deserves a decent house and decent living.
8. On this note, I once again commend the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) for this worthy initiative aimed at bringing succour to the Nigerian worker.
9. Thank you and God bless.