Sunday, November 24, 2013

NLC begins work on N960bn workers’ estate December

President Goodluck Jonathan will in January 2014, inaugurate the
construction of some housing units aimed at providing affordable
houses for workers.
The housing project, initiated by the Nigeria Labour Congress, will be
executed in conjunction with Kriston Lally EPC Nigeria Limited and
their foreign partner, Kriston Lally Enterprises Atti-kat.
A statement by the NLC obtained on Sunday said the foundation of the
first phase of the over 600,000 workers' housing units at a cost of
N960bn, would be laid in the second week of December.
It stated that the arrangement to start the construction began when
senior members of the NLC led by its President, Mr. Abdulwahed Omar,
visited Athens, Greece, recently and finalised the agreement with the
partners, which included the funding and manpower.
The NLC said it had signed the N960bn ($6bn) agreement with the
private property developer, Kriston Lally EPC Nigeria Limited, to
provide houses for its members in both public and private sectors
across the country, at the interest rate of two per cent.
The project, it stressed, was aimed at providing an opportunity for
members of the NLC to own their own houses.
The proposed housing estate would consist of one-bedroom, two bedroom
detached and semi-detached, three bedroom detached and semi-detached,
four bedroom bungalows and four bedroom duplexes detached as well as
semi-detached, it stated.
According to Omar, the trip to Greece has been rewarding, adding the
country has a long history, strong ties and progressive issues.
He said, "When we came on board, we promised our members that we will
do as much as possible to ensure that as many workers as possible get
shelter before they retire because we believe it is one of the very
serious issues facing Nigerian workers today.
"The partnership is about providing quality and affordable housing for
the Nigerian workers. We have found in this Kriston Lally a very
formidable partnership that we can rely on, we can trust and we can
work with.
"That is why when they invited us here, we were really strengthened by
the fact that it is a reality and it is giving assurance to us and by
extension we are also reassuring Nigerian workers that by the grace of
God, when we go into this it is going to continue to have a multiplier
effect until Nigerian workers are comfortable in the area of housing."
Describing the housing scheme as a very wonderful initiative, Omar
said the meeting with the foreign partners and the financiers was
successful, adding that the Nigeria embassy was also involved in the
process. The Nigeria Ambassador to Greece, Mr. Ayodeji Ayodele, who
also hosted the partners, said the collaboration with the Greek
company would bring succour and happiness to Nigerian workers.
"Over the years, they have managed to establish their skills and
specialities in several areas of human activities. Our business link
can work in collaboration with these people to move such industrial
know-how and assets into Nigeria for local production. This will
complement the efforts of the Nigeria Labour Congress; it will bring
more jobs to our people," he said.
The Managing Director, Kriston Lally Nigeria, Alhaji Mustapha
Madawaki, said about 5,000 workers had already subscribed to the phase
one of the scheme in Abuja.
According to him, when construction begins in Lagos, Port Harcourt
and other states, the total number of subscribers will be 100, 000.
Copyright PUNCH.

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