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February 25, 2014

The Trade Union Congress (TUC) has partnered Rock of Ages Properties Ltd (Subsidiary of Chicason Group) to build 100,000 housing units in different parts of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), in its bid to reduce the housing deficit in the country and provide affordable housing to workers residing in the Nation’s Capital.

The TUC President, Comrade Bobboi Bala Kaigama at the inauguration yesterday in Abuja, said that expectations were now high that the over 17 million housing deficits in Nigeria will soon be drastically reduced.

Kaigama said that the first phase of the 100,000 units, which is about 20,000 housing units, will be completed before end of the year.

According to him, the project was urgently needed because the Nigerian workers have continued to suffer under the hardship of landlords.

He said: “You can imagine the workers in Abuja who are under the hardship of landlords in this town. What we are doing is to curtail the excesses of these landlords.

“We have more than 17million housing deficit in this country and the worst-hit people are the Nigerian workers. We have taken our destinies in our hands and we are providing affordable houses for our members”.

Kaigama revealed that together with the developer (Rock of Ages Properties Ltd), they were targeting 100,000 housing units; “but for now, we are developing 20, 000 first in Abuja and this will be delivered before the end of the year. Next year, it continues. Once we get lands, we develop”.

Earlier, the Executive Chairman of Chicason Group, Dr Alexander Chika Okafor said the project was born out of a deep concern for the Nigerian people on the subject of housing provision.

“In a bid to support the current administration’s transformation agenda of providing and making accessible, good and affordable housing to all Nigerians, an MOU was signed between Rock of Ages Properties Ltd and TUC for the provision of 100,000 housing units nationwide including the FCT”, Okafor said.

Also speaking, former president of TUC, Peter Esele said the intervention of TUC will further bridge the huge deficit in the housing sector in the country.

Esele said: “You see how majority of our members suffer after retirement. At that age, everything is at a standstill. Once you have a roof over your head, half of your problems are solved. The Federal Mortgage Bank is supporting. We have repayment plan of up to 25 years.

“What we are doing is to bridge that huge housing deficit. If the private sector, the government and other relevant agencies contribute their quota, the deficit will be reduced drastically. The government is also giving out small loans to those interested”.
Source: African Herald Express
Bala Kaigama

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