By Laleye Dipo
The Niger State Government has said it will soon upgrade and transform the Suleja town master plan to turn it to an urban city with smart homes.
Suleja is the major satellite town of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) which has had its infrastructural facilities overstretched as a result of the movement of people from Abuja to the town.
Governor Abubakar Sani Bello announced the plan to upgrade the town’s master plan when he laid the foundation of a 279 housing scheme on Tuesday.
Though the governor did not give details of the planned upgrade and transformation of the master plan, he nonetheless said that the housing project is one of the ways the administration plans to make the city “a liveable city”.
“We are determined to solve the accommodation deficit problems in our urban cities especially in a place like Suleja where you have lots of people working in Abuja and coming to stay in the town.
“There is therefore the need to look at the master plan of Suleja urban area and provide better smart houses.”
Bello noted that the infrastructure of Suleja has been overwhelmed because of the number of people living in it, saying that the government has engaged a consultant to look at the agreements reached between the state and the federal government prior to the setting up of Abuja as the FCT.
“I believe that some of the promises made then by the federal government have been fulfilled but again there are more that have not been fulfilled, so we are following up on these,” he said.
The governor therefore said the housing scheme is very important to the administration because it is a build-up to the partnership between the private sector and the government in its determined efforts to provide for the indigenes and people in Suleja town.
Bello therefore asked the developers to make the cost of the houses affordable to indigenes and give them the offer of first right of refusal, assuring the people that government would provide all necessary facilities in the estate including access roads, potable water and electricity.
In his remarks, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of the Federal Housing Authority Mortgage Bank, Alhaji Hayatudeen Awwal, disclosed that N25 billion has been made available for the construction of the houses.
He said the project will provide 2,000 direct and indirect jobs to people around the state.
The project is being handled by the state government in partnership with Bamhill Properties.