Mudiaga Affe, Calabar
The Africa Nations Development Programme, a subsidiary of the World Nations Development Programme Initiative, on Saturday commenced the construction of a 5,000-unit social housing estate consisting of two-bedroom flats in Akpabuyo, Cross River State.
Beneficiaries of the housing units will include Bakassi refugees and other underprivileged persons in the state.
The estate, whose ground-breaking ceremony was performed by the Cross River State Governor, Prof. Ben Ayade, will be equipped with modern facilities, including hospital and skill acquisition centre, among others.
The African Director-General, ANDP, Ambassador Samson Omojuyigbe, said his organisation decided to undertake the construction of housing schemes for indigent Nigerians in order to fulfil its social contract with the poor.
Omojuyigbe, who said the project would cost about N78bn, maintained that the site for the project was carefully chosen to give Bakassi refugees and other underprivileged people a sense of belonging.
“This project is meant to bring relief to the underprivileged persons in the society and the houses will be built and handed over to the beneficiaries at no cost to them. We are more concerned about the future generations. If the future generations have hope, then our social contract with the society has been achieved,” he stated.
Omojuyigbe expressed appreciation to the state government for providing the land for the project, but appealed to rich and well-meaning Nigerians to support the effort of his organisation by assisting in making houses accessible to the underprivileged in the society.
Also speaking, the Country Director, ANDP, Mr. Thomas Ajikwe, stated that it was high time wealthy Nigerians remained at home to develop their country.
He said such effort would facilitate development and give the younger ones a sense of belonging in the country.
“This project is for Africans and by Africans, and it is time that we come back to our country to help develop it. We have all the potential, yet we are one of the poorest nations in the world. This scheme should be supported by the rich for us to give hope to future generations,” Ajikwe appealed.
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