Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, said his administration will partner with the Federal Housing Authority, FHA, to ensure that the people have access to affordable housing.
The governor said such partnership would ensure that the FHA is given access to land to commence the immediate construction of houses.
Speaking during a courtesy call by the Managing Director, Federal Housing Authority, Professor Mohammed Al-Amin, yesterday at the Government House, Wike directed the management of Greater Port Harcourt City Development Authority and the State Ministry of Housing to liaise with the FHA to develop a framework for affordable housing.
The governor, however, stated that the Federal Housing Authority must sign an undertaking that it would develop lands allocated to it within one year, failure of which the Rivers State Government will retake the said allocated lands.
“State governments find it difficult to allocate plots of land to the Federal Housing Authority because lands allocated are allowed to stay fallow without any development on them.
“I have directed the Greater Port Harcourt City Development Authority in conjunction with the State Ministry of Housing to discuss with the FHA on how to develop a framework for the joint development of affordable housing.
“However, we are proposing that the FHA sign an undertaking that should they fail to use the parcels of land allocated within one year, we shall repossess same”.
In his remarks, Al-Amin said the essence of the visit is in furtherance with the directive of the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, to the FHA and Federal Mortgage Bank to use lands owned by the Federal Housing Authority across the country with the resources of the Federal Mortgage Bank to invest and deliver housings.
He said Rivers State is among the first slated to benefit from the programme, affirming that the FHA has been restructured into Commercial and Social Departments with a view to making housing a tool for development.
Mohammed appealed to the governor to allocate more lands to the authority, as well as intervene in ground rents and acquisition fees charged the authority.
In a related development, the Rivers State Waste Management Agency, RIWAMA, has lauded Governor Wike for the provision of good roads, flood free streets and roads despite unusual heavy downpour this rainy season.
Giving the commendation yesterday in Port Harcourt, Sole Administrator of the agency, Brother Felix Obuah, observed that the governor could achieve such a feat as a result of the focused efforts of his administration to checkmate the occasional natural disaster.

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