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20 February, 2019

FG Denies Plans To Stop Payment Of Shortfalls To GENCOS

Following a report in a national daily newspaper, the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing Wednesday denied that the Federal Government has stopped the payment of shortfalls to Electricity Generation Companies (GenCos), describing the report as both false and unfounded.

The report, contained in the Wednesday edition of Punch Online media, held that the Federal Government on Tuesday ordered power generation companies to find customers and sell their power directly to the identified customers as, according to the report, “plans are on the way for it to ultimately exit the monthly payments to Gencos to help cushion the revenue shortfalls on the books of the power generators as a result of the poor remittances from the power distributors”.

The report titled, “FG to stop payment of shortfalls to Gencos” and attributed to the Permanent Secretary (Power) in the Ministry, Engr. Louis Edozien, emanated from the remarks of the Permanent Secretary at a Workshop organized by the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) on Tuesday, 12th February, 2019 on the Eligible Customer Regulation.

But in a Statement signed by the Permanent Secretary in person, the Ministry asserted that at no point in his remarks did the Permanent Secretary state that "FGN is to stop payment of shortfalls to Gencos", pointing out that the Payment Assurance Programme of the Federal Government that authorized the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trader (NBET) to guarantee payment for any power it has contracted from generation companies on the national grid had not been reversed.

The Statement read in part, “The Payment Assurance Programme of the Federal Government of Nigeria that authorized NBET to borrow N701.9 billion to guarantee payment for any power it has contracted from generation companies on the national grid and their gas and other suppliers has been in operation since January 2017. The amount NBET is authorized to borrow is not yet fully drawn. The Federal Executive Council (FEC) approved the programme. FEC has not taken any decision to stop it. FEC is the appropriate authority to comment on the Programme’s tenure and borrowing ceiling”.

In order to set the records straight, the Statement clarified that at the workshop organized by NERC on the Eligible Customer Regulation, the Permanent Secretary urged generation companies to more aggressively take advantage of the regulation to sell the power they can generate, of which 2,000MW is now stranded, to Eligible Customers who need it and are willing and able to pay for it.

Insisting that it would be better than waiting for NBET to pay for it or to guarantee it, for which NBET needs support from the Federal Government due to shortfalls in payment by distribution companies, the Permanent Secretary decried that though the Minister issued the policy direction to NERC that gave rise to the regulation in May 2017, and NERC has issued the regulation, none of the interested consumers and their generation company suppliers have been given licenses to buy and sell power as Eligible Customers. He encouraged NERC to accelerate and simplify the licensing process.

He further stated that the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) should continue to support the regulation by making targeted investments in the national grid, as needed to service specific contracts with generation companies and Eligible Customers to transmit the power, with penalties for failure to transmit, adding that TCN could finance such targeted investments with the expected revenue from such bilateral transmission contracts.

Encouraging electricity distribution companies (DisCos) to embrace the policy, the Permanent Secretary argued that if the DisCos were satisfying the power supply needs of their consumers of bulk power adequately such consumers would have no reason to generate the power by themselves or to want to become Eligible Customers adding that by embracing the regulation, the DisCos could partner with investors and generation companies to build new distribution infrastructure to better serve specific paying customers.

“They can buy power directly from generation companies and contract with TCN to deliver it, and give premium service to selected customers or customer groups”, the Permanent Secretary said adding that in such cases the distribution company must be willing and able to guarantee the payment for the power they buy, “because the shortfalls in payment which characterizes their power purchases from NBET, would not be possible in such bilateral contracts”.

The Permanent Secretary then enjoined dissatisfied consumers to take advantage of the Customer Care platforms set up by all the distribution companies in compliance with the provisions of their license, and escalate unresolved complaints to the NERC Consumer f Forum offices, as provided for in regulations, emphasizing that dissatisfied consumers could take advantage of the Mini-Grid Regulation, NERC's up-coming Franchising Regulation and the Eligible Customer Regulation to get premium power that meets their needs.

The Workshop revealed that the Ministry has received forty four (44) expressions of interest with a total demand for 600MW from underserved and unserved consumers desirous of becoming Eligible Customers. Of these, 14 have submitted license applications to NERC, two have fulfilled all NERC's conditions and expect to be licensed imminently.

The Ministry enjoins the public to discountenance the false report, and requests that the news outlets purveying such fake news cease and desist.

Senate Committee Appraises 2016 Budget Implementation Of The Housing Sector The Senate Committee on Lands, Housing and Urban Development paid an oversight visit to the Ministry’s Headquarters in Abuja to appraise the level of implementation of the 2016 budgetary provision to the Ministry. This is however the first time the Committee is visiting the Ministry to carry over its constitutional responsibilities of oversight of the Ministry’s operations of year 2016. The Honourable Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Raji Fashola, SAN, who was represented by the Minister of State II, Surv. Suleiman Hassan Zarma, mnis, received and welcomed the Senate Committee to the Ministry. Suleiman expressed pleasure of the Ministry to have the Chairman, Senator Barnabas Gemade and other members of the committee on the oversight visit and solicited for their cooperation to guide and correct appropriately where necessary, so that the Nigerian electorates will enjoy the dividends of democracy under the present administration. He enjoined the Upper and Lower Chambers of the National Assembly to work in synergy on the implementation of Special Intervention of Constituency Projects in their various localities. In his remarks, the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Lands, Housing and Urban Development of the 8th Assembly, Senator Barnabas Gemade, thanked the Ministry for the warmth reception given to them. He stated that the principle of separation of powers in a constitutional democracy requires that law makers carry out this oversight function regularly on the Executive Branch of the Government. The chairman added that this vital function of the Parliament with the cooperation of the Executive arm of government will no doubt boost development and good governance in the country. According to him, ‘’our nation is in dire need of improved level of housing delivery to our people as the need remains enormous.  We are keenly looking at how you are implementing new policies in enhancing this’’. Gemade also said that the Committee have paid similar visits to Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) and Federal Housing Authority (FHA) as Agencies under the supervision of the Ministry and stated the need for higher support to boost their operations in order to achieve their mandates. The Permanent Secretary (Works & Housing) Mohammed Bukar informed the Senate Committee that presentation of the 2016 budget implantation reports are segmented into seven parts and presented by directors and heads of the various units as follows:  2016 Budget Performance by the Director (Finance & Accounts), National Housing Programme by Director (Public Building), Provision of Infrastructure to the National Housing Programme by Director (Construction). Others are Public-Private Partnerships (PPP) in Housing Development by Head (PPP Unit), Lands under the Ministry’s Sites and Services Programme and the List of Titles issued by the Ministry Nationwide by Director (Lands & Housing) and Status of the Implementation of Special Projects by Head (Special Projects Units). In his presentation, the Director, Finance and Accounts, Ibrahim Tumsal informed the Senate Committee that only 43.7 per cent of budget implementation was recorded in 2016 based on funds released to the Housing sector of the Ministry. The Committee members took time to asked questions and clarifications on some grey areas of the budget implementation and necessary recommendations were made by the law makers for further improvement in subsequent budgetary provisions.   Olatunji John Principal Information Officer (Housing) For: Director (Information)  
13 October, 2017
Fashola Allays Fears Of Discos About Investments In Solar, Other FG Policy Initiatives To Improve Service In The Power Sector As Minister chairs the 20th Monthly Meeting of Power Sector Operators in Owerri. Says initiatives, including outsourcing of meter supply, licensing of eligible customers, and others are aimed at improving service to Nigerians. Reports recovery of 100MW from the damaged Afam IV Power Plant, energizing of Jebba-Kainji 2nd 330KV line and the 2nd Ajaokuta-Abuja 330KV line by TCN, others. Gives kudos to Judiciary for various interventions and support toward development of Sector The Minister of Power Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola SAN, has allayed the fears of the Electricity Distribution Companies (DisCos) over the promotion of the deployment of more solar power through mini-grids and other Federal Government initiatives aimed at improving service in the Power Sector. Fashola, who spoke while presiding at the 20th Monthly Meeting of Power Sector Operators in Owerri, Imo State, said that the Sector had made noteworthy progress since the 19th Meeting held in Lagos and collectively the challenges that lay ahead in the roadmap to incremental, stable and uninterrupted power would be engaged. The initiatives over which the DisCos wrote a letter to the Government dated 27thSeptember 2017 and titled, “Federal Government of Nigeria’s Initiatives in the  Electricity Sector and the Impact on Electricity Distribution Company Activities”, include the provision of meters to consumers through licensing of meter suppliers and provision of more power to consumers through licensing of eligible customers. Other initiatives are the provision of Independent dedicated Power to Universities, promotion of the deployment of more solar power through mini-grids and expansion of the Distribution Network of the DisCos so that they can take additional 2,000 MW of power now available for supply. Fashola, who noted the concern of the DisCos about the impact of the initiatives on their businesses, however, pointed out that the initiatives were targeted at improving service to the people. He, however, commended them for the decision to channel their complaints to the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) by a jointly signed letter, a decision he described as “a welcome departure from the previous order”, which should to be encouraged. “It is my understanding that you fear that you will lose some income or some customers if Government proceeds; and on the question of meters, you seek to have technical compatibility with what the licencee will operate. In respect of possible investment in Distribution equipment you seek that Government should route the investment through the DisCos. Understandably you are concerned about investment recovery and in your views, the solution is a tariff review”, the Minister noted. He, however, pointed out that while their concerns about business viability, financial stability and cost recovery were well understood and indeed supported by the Electric Power Sector Perform Act of 2005 (EPSRA) which Government would respect, Government’s focus was also strong on the issue of service to the people, adding, “There must be a balance somewhere in the middle”. Fashola said as far as the promotion of solar and other sources of independent power was concerned, they were not only supported by the ESPRA, but were “consistent with our Paris Climate Change Agreement Obligations and with emerging global practice”. Pointing out that Government was yet to take position on the best way forward on the issue of channelling investment into Distribution assets through the DisCos, the Minister declared, “DisCos have nothing to fear about solar. It is a space in which they are entitled to play but in which they cannot exclude others from playing”. He added, “The ESPRA did not contemplate a monopoly for any licensee, unless it is expressly stated in the license”, pointing out, however, that Government was clear that a solution must be found quickly to the inability of DisCos to take about 2000 MW of power that would imminently increase as the sector got more incremental power. Fashola, who maintained that the concerns contained in the letter under reference could and would be managed through consultations by NERC “ to help to build consensus about how best to serve customers, instead of festering gulfs of Disagreement”, added, however, that as a 40 per cent shareholder of the DisCos (on behalf of the Federal, State, Local Governments and Workers), “Government has a self-benefitting interest in the wellbeing and efficiency of the DisCos”.   The Minister noted that while the letter and concerns of the DisCos focussed first on their business, the Government initiatives focussed more on service, adding, “Consensus should give us both the service and the business”. Reviewing the progress made in the sector in the last one month, Fashola informed the meeting that in the last month the sector has recovered 100Megawatts from the damaged Afam IV Power Plant, which he recalled, had been inoperative since January 2015. The Minister also reported that the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) has energized the Jebba-Kainji 2nd 330KV line and the 2nd Ajaokuta-Abuja 330KV line both of which were inoperative since 2015 while in the last one month, “specifically on Wednesday 4th October 2017”, the Federal Executive Council has approved the verified sum of Federal Government MDA debts of N25.9Billion, and its payment by setting it off against the debts owed by the DisCos to the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trader (NBET). The Minister, who promised to communicate soon to the Meeting how the amount has been applied to reduce debts owed by DisCos to NBET, informed also that promising progress was being made in recovering debts due from international Customers adding that the Meeting would also “be notified of how much has been received when the appropriate accounts confirm that they have received value for the credits we have been notified of”. Also recalling the progress report of the last meeting, Fashola listed the successful connection of power to Magboro, Ibafo and neighbouring communities in Ogun State, the metering of 196 out of 244 customers on Ajijedidun, Adamolekun and Abiola Alao Streets in Ijeshatedo in Lagos, particularly and the progress made to restore power to 16 out of 36 communities in Ondo North (Akoko Communities) and the challenges in Okitipupa. The Minister gave kudos to the Judiciary for its various interventions and support towards the development of the Power Sector, particularly commending it for its judicial support to stop corruption, enforce the law and promote liquidity in the sector as well as the recent practice directions issued by the Chief Justice of Nigeria for the full enforcement of Arbitration clauses in power contracts. Noting that the practice direction would take such Arbitration cases out of the tedium of regular trial and place them in the hands of commercially sensitive adjudicators, Fashola also welcomed with delight the conviction and sentencing to three years’ imprisonment by the Federal High Court, Abakaliki, Ebonyi State, of one Okechukwu Anoke for tampering with electricity fittings.   Also welcomed with delight by the Minister was the intervention in the Court of Appeal in the case involving the tariff review, which the Trial Court had earlier set aside declaring the tariff setting process illegal, but which, according to him, the Appeal Court has reversed and ordered that the case be tried afresh. Emphasizing the critical role of the judiciary and law enforcement in the power sector, Fashola pointed out that the efficacy of the practice directions issued by the CJN for the strict enforcement of Arbitration clauses did not rest with the Judicial officers alone adding the Nigerian Bar Association has a pivotal role to play in ensuring that Arbitration clauses were enforced. “This is because it is often the Lawyers, not the clients that file and initiate processes that invoke the jurisdiction of the Court”, the Minister said, adding, “It seems to me that there might be something that potentially crosses the line of ethics which should arouse the interest of the Bar Association if one of its members fails to avail a client of his rights under an Arbitration agreement”.    On the report that the Yola DisCo has not been actively participating in the affairs of the Association of Electricity Distribution Companies, the Minister, who reiterated his position about the right and freedom of individual DisCos to associate, pointed out that Government also has the right to associate or dissociate with the DisCos “by lack of recognition or grant of recognition; because rights are not absolute and because they impose duties”. “All I need say is that we must respect the right of Yola DisCo to also choose whether it wants to associate or not. That is a duty we all have if we must enjoy the freedom and right to associate”, he said. Thanking the Plateau State Governor, Mr Simon Lalong for hosting and the Operators for participating in the 3rd National Council on Power, which he described as very successful, Fashola, noted that the State used the opportunity offered by the occasion to present its Rural Electrification Roadmap to all. He urged the Operators to “follow up with the State Governments to assist you in enforcing the law against energy theft, right of way protection, metering of state government offices and buildings, the verification and prompt settlement of bills”. On the Order signed by the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) which reduced the timeline for making (New) Electricity connections from 145 days to 40 days, the Minister declared, “While DisCos are also expected to comply and file reports of compliance to NERC and copied to my office, the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Council (PEBEC) has advised that the focal DisCos that will affect Nigeria’s ease of doing business rating will be Lagos, Ikeja, Kano and Kaduna because of the sample size that the population they serve represent”.  
12 October, 2017
Presentation of N100 Billion DMO Sovereign SUKUK; Each Geo- Political Zone to Receive About N16.67Billion, 25 Road Projects to Benefit The much –awaited N100 billion Debt Management Office (DMO) subscribed Sovereign SUKUK (bond) cheque has been presented to the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Raji Fashola, SAN by the Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun. While presenting the cheque, the Minister of Finance disclosed that the Sovereign SUKUK is the first of its kind to be floated in Nigeria adding that the United Kingdom and South Africa had in past used such SUKUK bonds as a financing option. 2. The Minister of Power, Works, and Housing   stated that during his maiden meeting with Contractors handling various projects for the Ministry, on assumption of duty, lack of funds and vagaries of weather were identified as major stumbling blocks to the delivery of projects. The introduction of this novel idea in project financing, apart from the annual budgetary allocation to the Works sector, is, therefore, a panacea to bridging the funding gap, according to the Minister. 3. Fashola who received the cheque, on behalf of the Contractors, hailed the over subscription of the bond as a clear demonstration of investor –confidence in the Nigeria’s economy and, most importantly, exponteneous  economic growth to be recorded with the successful delivery of the affected projects which will open vistas of economic activities.   4. The Director General of the Debt Management Office (DMO), midwife of the process, Mrs. Patience Oniha alluded the success of the offer to the support and commitment of all the parties involved, especially the unrelenting efforts of the Ministers of Power, Works and Housing, as well as, Finance. She identified it as an example of “how we, Nigerians, can make things work”, adding that the only viable option is to invest in infrastructure. 5.  The Financial Advisers to theFacility, Messrs FBN Capital and Lotus Capital, while thanking the Federal Government for the opportunity to participate in the process, assured Nigerians that the additional funding will unlock potentials for economic growth. 6. A breakdown of the 25 prioritized road projectsto benefit from the additional funds, as given by the Director, Highways, Planning and Development, Engr. Chukwunwike  Ogonna Uzo, are as follows; i. Rehabilitation and Reconstruction of Enugu-Port Harcourt Dual Carriageway, Section II (Umuahia Tower-Aba Township Rail/Road Bridge Crossing  in Abia State) - Arab Contractor Nigeria Limited,                      N3,750,000,000.00 ii. Dualization of Lokoja-Benin Road: Obajana Junction-Benin, Section I Phase I (Obajana – Okene in Kogi State) - CGC Nigeria Limited,                     N2,500,000,000.00 iii. Dualization of Kano - Katsina Road Phase I: Kano Town at Dawanau(round about to Katsina State Border with Kano State.)- CCECC (Nigeria) Limited,                     N 3,000,000,000.00                        vi. Rehabilitation Of Enugu-Port Harcourt Road Section IV,(Aba-Port Harcourt in Rivers State) - CCECC Nigeria Limited ,       N 3,500,000,000.00                        V. Dualization of Yenegwe Road Junction-Kolo - Otuoke - Bayelsa Palm in Bayelsa State. –CCECC (Nigeria) Limited,                     N 3,500,000,000.00                           vi. Dualisation of Kano-Maiduguri Road linking Kano-Jigawa – Bauchi - Yobe and Borno States,   Section V,(Damaturu -Maiduguri)- CCECC Nigeria Limited,                     N 5,000,000,000.00  vii. Dualisation of Suleja-Minna Road in Niger State, Phase II, Salini  (Nigeria) Limited,                      N3,521,958,532.49                        viii Reconstruction and Asphalt Overlay of Benin-Ofosu-Ore-Ajebandele-Shagamu Dual Carriageway Phase IV, ( Ajebandele-Shagamu) in Ondo and Ogun States) - Reynolds Construction Company (Nig) Limited, NN6,000,000,000.00                        xi. Reconstruction of the Outstanding Sections of the Benin – Ofusu – Ore –Ajebandele - Shagamu Expressway, Phase III,  Reynolds Construction Company (Nig) Limited,                     N 5,000,000,000.00                        x. Dualisation of Ibadan - Ilorin Rd Section II, (Oyo-Ogbomosho Road in Oyo State- Reynolds Construction Company (Nig) Limited,                      N5,666,666,666.67                        xi.  Rehabilitation Of Outstanding Section Of Onitsha - Enugu Expressway: Amansea - Enugu State Border - Reynolds Construction Company (Nig) Limited,                     N 5,166,666,666.67                        xii. Rehabilitation and Reconstruction of Enugu-Port Harcourt Dual Carriageway Section I,( Lokpanta - Umuahia Tower ) in Abia State,  Setraco (Nigeria) Limited ,                    N 4,000,000,000.00                        xiii. Dualization of Abuja- Abaji - Lokoja Road Section I (International Airport link Road Junction - Sheda Village Junction) - Dantata & Sawoe Construction Company (Nig) Limited,               N 3,000,000,000.00                           xiv. Dualisation of Kano-Maiduguri Road linking Kano - Jigawa –Bauchi - Yobe and Borno States,  Section I, (Kano - Wudil -Shuari) in Kano and Jigawa States-Dantata&Sawoe Construction Company (Nig) Limited,                 N5,000,000,000.00                        xv. Construction of Kano Western Bypass as an Extension of Dualisation of Kano - Maiduriguri Road Section 1-Dantata&Sawoe Construction Company (Nig) Limited ,   N 4,000,000,000.00                           xvi.  Dualization of Lokoja-Benin Road, Obajana Junction -Benin Section III Phase I, (Auchi - Ehor, Edo States) - Dantata & Sawoe Construction Company (Nig) Limited,     N 3,166,666,666.67                           xvii.  Rehabilitation Of Enugu-Port Harcourt Road Section III ( Enugu-Lokpanta, Enugu State) - CGC (Nigeria) Limited,   N 3,750,000,000.00                        Xviii Construction of Kaduna Eastern By-pass in Kaduna State -Eksiogullari Nigeria Limited,       N4,666,666,666.67                        xix Dualization of Lokoja-Benin Road: Obajana Junction-Benin Section IV, Phase I,(Ehor-Benin City, Edo States)- Reynolds Construction Company (Nig) Limited,         N 3,500,000,000.00                         xx.  Dualization of Lokoja-Benin Road: Obajana Junction-Benin Section II Phase I, (Okene-Auchi, Kogi and Edo States)-Mothercat Limited,      N3,000,000,000.00                           xxi. Dualisation of Kano-Maiduguri Road linking Kano-Jigawa-Bauchi-Yobe and Borno States.  Section II, Shuari-Azare (Bauchi State)-Setraco (Nigeria) Limited, N 4,166,666,666.67                        xxii. Dualisation of Kano-Maiduguri Road linking Kano-Jigawa-Bauchi-Yobe and Borno States.  Section III, (Azare-Potiskum, Bauchi and Yobe States) Mothercat Limited,  N3,500,000,000.00                        xxiii.  Dualization of Kano-Maiduguri Road linking Kano-Jigawa-Bauchi-Yobe and Borno States. Section IV, Potiskum-Damaturu Road (Yobe State)- CGC Nigeria Limited,  N 4,000,000,000.00                        xxiv.  Construction of Oju/Loko - Oweto Bridge over River Benue to link Loko (Nasarawa State) and Oweto (Benue State)- Reynolds Construction Company (Nig) Limited,    N 4,144,708,134.18   xxv. Dualization of Abuja - Abaji-Lokoja Road Sect. IV (Koton Karfe-Lokoja), (Kogi State)-Gitto Constrizion Generali Ltd,  N3,500,000,000.00                       7. Giving  a Vote of Thanks at the Presentation Ceremony, the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing (Works and Housing Sectors), Alhaji Mohammed Bukar expressed appreciation to the drivers of the process, while admonishing the Contractors to make judicious use of the money, insisting  that they will be closely monitored.  
10 October, 2017
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5 October, 2018


This is to inform FCT Residents, Visitors and Motorists that due to the National Convention of the All Progressives Congress, APC slated for Saturday, 6th October 2018 at the Eagle Square, Abuja, an unusual influx of human and vehicular traffic will be experienced within the city with the attendant traffic congestion in and around the venue of the convention.

To this effect all vehicular movement through Shehu Shagari Way from the early hours of Saturday, 6th October, 2018 to Sunday, 7th October  will be diverted at Ralph Sodeinde Street by Bullet Building to link Central Business District. Motorists will also be diverted at Kur Mohammed Street and Constitution Avenue at Bayelsa House to Central Business District.

Traffic on Ahmadu Bello Way will equally be diverted at Ralph Sodeinde Street by Finance Junction to Central Business District. Motorists will also be diverted at Kur Mohammed Street or Constitution Avenue by Benue Building to link Central Business District.

The Federal Capital Territory Administration have mobilized Officers of the Police, FRSC, FCT Directorate of Road Traffic Service and other relevant Traffic Enforcement Agencies to various flash points to ensure seamless traffic flow.

Parking has been made available at the National Stadium for ALL Delegates coming from outside Abuja from where they will be conveyed to the venue by dedicated Buses.

In the same vein, ALL Delegates from within the FCT should converge at the Old Parade Ground  from where they will be conveyed to the venue.

Please note that parking around the Eagle Square and its environs will not be tolerated as offending vehicles will be removed.

The understanding of the public is hereby solicited

Secretary, Transportation Secretariat
Federal Capital Territory

16 February, 2019

FG To Erring Contractors, Up Your Games Or Face Sanctions

The Zonal Director of the National Housing Programme in the North- West, Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing, Architect Joseph Toluhi, has urged erring contractors handling the on going construction of housing project in Kebbi State to step up their games or face necessary sanctions.

He noted that contractors, who fails to perform diligently on the job will have to give way for others to be engaged, adding that relevant clauses in the contract agreement can be invoke for appropriate sanctions.

This was contained in a statement by the Zonal Director on Wednesday in Biriin Kebbi during the North-West inspection tour to the project site.

Toluhi stated that the federal government is committed to provide decent and affordable housing to its teeming population and reduce the housing deficit in the country, adding that the NHP project is designed for the medium income earners who have the affordable means to acquire these houses across the nation.

The National Housing Programme, Kebbi State consist of 76 housing units of 1bedroom, 2 bedrooms and 3 bedrooms semi-detached bungalows, are being handled by 19 indigenous contractors.

In a similar development, the zonal inspection team led by Toluhi also visited the National Housing Programme site in Sokoto State to have on-the-spot assessment of the on going construction works which has reached 95 per cent completion stage.

“I must say that I am pleased and happy with the level of progress of work on this site because we have a very high level of competition. Most of the building here have been completed”. He noted that out of 20 contractors engaged, 12 of them have already been completed while four are yet to be roofed.

According to him, “this means, we are ready to move into these buildings. The infrastructure such as water supply, road arterial and water supply have reached a very high level of completion”.

The Team Leader in Sokoto State, Mr lliya Kastuda also confirmed that construction work has reached 95 percent completion, adding that there is provision of worship centers, school, market to give necessary comfort and police post to ensure adequate security within the housing estate.

The zonal Director and other officials of the Ministry inspected a similar project in Gusau, Zamfara State, which is put at 65% completion stage. He however expressed disappointment in the poor quality of job done, stressing that government will not tolerate sub-standard jobs from any contractor.


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1 February, 2019

Speech Delivered By H.E, Babatunde Raji Fashola, SAN At Press Briefing On National Infrastructure Maintenance Framework At Federal Ministry Of Power, Works And Housing Headquarters Mabushi, Abuja

I welcome you warmly to this press briefing to share information about two very important developments that occurred in the month of January 2019.

The first was that on the 9th January 2019, the Federal Executive Council, Nigeria's highest decision making organ of the Executive arm of government approved a National Maintenance Framework for public buildings.

The second is that on the 24th January 2019, President Muhammad Buhari signed into law a bill to prohibit discrimination against persons living with disabilities which included provisions for specific actions that must be taken within a period of 5 (FIVE) years to provide opportunities for such persons to live as normal a life as possible.

This briefing is meant to discuss what these developments mean for Nigeria and Nigerians, and to highlight the possibilities that they offer for our way of life and our economy.

National Maintenance Framework for Public Buildings

Let me start with the National Maintenance Framework on Public Buildings and first point out that for now, this only applies to public buildings but will ultimately extend to other public assets like roads, bridges, rail, power installations and other infrastructure of a public nature.

What the FEC approval means is that after decades of agonizing about lack of maintenance, the Buhari government has chosen to act.

This is policy decision of enormous profundity because the records do not indicate that any such policy decision has previously been taken at the federal level.

The decision was provoked by a memorandum from the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing that challenged the conventional thinking that "Nigeria does not have a maintenance culture".

The memorandum argued and FEC agreed, that maintenance of infrastructure whether public or private, is not a cultural issue but an economic one.

The memorandum showed that in the built industry, only about 23% of the workforce is employed by Design (6%) and Construction (15%), Governance (2%) , while the remaining 77% are employed by Maintenance and operation.

Council was persuaded to accept that while skill training and vocational centres exist almost nationwide for training artisans like plumbers, painters, bricklayers, welders, tilers, electricians etc., there is a lack of National policy that makes the practice of these vocations economically worthwhile on a sustainable basis.

The available data showed that many people trained in these vocations often resort to earning a living by resorting to other vocations in which they do not have a training, such as riding motor-cycles and tri-cycles in order to make a living.

Therefore, the federal government’s decision on maintenance is an economic one, to empower Nigerians at the base of the economic pyramid who are artisans, those at the middle of the pyramid who own small businesses, SMEs who are involved in manufacturing of building and allied materials.

What it entails is that:

* Site assessment of the affected buildings will have to be conducted, measurement are to be taken, valuation conducted and data is collated. This on its own requires the employment of people to carry out this process and therefore jobs will be created from the very first step.

* It will also provide for credible data such as lettable space, value of the property and so on which can form the basis of the economic decisions or even actions in emergency periods.

* Condition assessment is the next step that requires people to be trained and employed to assess the conditions of affected buildings from foundation to roof and for mechanical and electrical sustainability for purpose.

* In one of our sample buildings leading up to the memorandum to FEC, we found out that out of 63 air-conditioning units, 11 required replacement or repairs. We also identified windows, doors, tiles, roofing materials, plastering works that required replacement or repair.

* The maintenance program is then developed from these assessments as to what jobs need to be done to restore the building to fitness, what needs to be replaced and what needs to be repaired.

* This is the basis for the award of the maintenance contract following the existing procurement law.

* This provides a window of opportunity for small businesses who are into facility management and for young graduates of building tech, architecture, engineering and even technical schools to register for these contracts.

* Successful bidders are then in a position to employ artisans to execute the maintenance contract they have won in the bid.

* Each ministry, department and agency will be responsible for its own procurement for its own building  after training of their designated personnel by the staff of the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing who will guide them through the framework approved by FEC.

* Because data is critical to the programme, each MDA will file data with the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing who will centrally manage data and use it to advise government and brief the public, while the MDA reserves the right to keep its own data.

* The award of contracts will not only drive employment for artisans, it will drive demand of manufacturing and suppliers of parts like wood, pipes, paint, tiles, electrical fittings, windows and tools, in addition to those of  cleaning items like soap, detergent, polish, varnish etc.

This is the economy that we see ahead as we set out to implement this approval starting from buildings, and as I said, and extending to roads, rail, bridges etc. as we progress.

Our pilot programme covered 9 buildings  comprising a Federal government college, a Federal Hospital,  a Federal Court building, a federal prison, a federal secretariat and our office buildings at our headquarters here in Mabushi.

The pilot survey showed that these 9 (Nine) buildings will cost N40.3 billion to reconstruct, while it will cost N922.8m per annum to maintain them which is about   2.3 % of the cost of replacement.

Just these 9 (NINE) buildings will require about 448 people to keep them well maintained a year. For example, the school will require at least 30 people to be employed per school for maintenance; and the federal government owns 104 Unity schools which potentially will require 30 X 104 = 3,120.

So you can see the economy we see when this extends to all our hospitals, all our courts, all our prisons, all our police stations, all our universities and covers all public buildings.

This is an economic choice by this government to drive the small business sector, to drive skill utilization and to move the economy from growth without jobs to growth driven by new jobs that reward services.

But as if this was not enough, President Buhari raised the bar for construction, services and a new way of life for Nigerians when he signed the law to protect people living with disability from discrimination and exclusion.

We have 5 years to comply, and this requires that all our buildings must have lifts and ramps. (By this I mean well designed ramps for people confined to their wheelchairs, not hills they cannot use on their own).

We must modify all our toilets with support for our brothers and sisters who are living with disabilities, as we must build sidewalks for them to use our roads without colliding with vehicles.

Our airports and parking lots in buildings must become compliant with international best practice by providing corridors and facilities for people living with disabilities at arrival and departure points, while a minimum number of slots clearly designated must be provided for vehicles owned by people living with disabilities.

This is another opportunity for jobs to re-design, to re-model, to retrofit all our assets nationwide to comply with the law as signed by Mr President.

Ladies and gentlemen, this is the Nigeria that beckons upon us from today and the immediate future. A Nigeria where public infrastructure works because they are maintained.

A Nigeria where everybody has a secure sense of belonging because they can use their skills and labour to earn a decent income and retain their dignity.

A Nigeria where government cares for the people living with disability by providing the basic minimum facilities that gives them a sense of belonging to demonstrate their ability.

Government has taken the leadership role to provide the policy and the how to make this Nigeria possible.

It is now your responsibility and mine to take ownership of this platform of opportunities and make it work for all of us.

Thank you for listening.

Babatunde Raji Fashola, SAN
Honourable Minister of Power, Works and Housing

Thursday 31st January 2019

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Photo News
15 February, 2019


The recently commissioned 60KW Grid Connected Hybrid Solar PV Mini Grid Power project in Torankawa village Yabo LGA Sokoto State Initiated by the Ministry of Power Works and Housing Power Sector under the Renewable Energy Micro Utility REMU Programme which was commissioned on Tuesday 12th February 2019

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Power News
Photo News
1 February, 2019


Hon Minister of Power Works Housing Mr Babatunde Fashola SAN 2nd left Permanent Secretary Works Housing Mr Mohammed Bukar 2nd right Chairman Committee on Housing House of Representatives Hon Mahmud Mohammed right Deputy Chairman Committee on Works Hon Dr Abubakar Kannike left shortly after the Hon Minister s Press Briefing on the National Public Building Maintenance Policy recently approved by the Federal Executive Council at the Ministry of Power Works Housing Headquarters Mabushi Abuja on Thursday 31st January 2019

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