…AS COMMITTEE AGAIN, SCORES FCTA HIGH

FCT Minister, Malam Muhammad Musa Bello has appealed for improved funding to enable the Federal Capital Territory Administration complete its numerous priority projects.

Malam Bello who made the appeal during the second day of oversight tour of FCT projects by the Senate Committee on the FCT also expressed appreciation for the support the committee has given the FCTA over time.

He said that the FCTA was placing a lot of emphasis on the completion of as many projects as possible. The Minister said “Basically, as we round up this administration, our efforts are to complete as many projects as possible based on prioritization, according to the funds available.

“But with the support of the committee, we are thinking of alternative sources of funding, so that some of these critical projects that are time-bound will be completed within the stipulated period”.

The Minister further stated that the past two days of the oversight  project tour concentrated only on a few projects within the city, such as roads and water projects while pointing out that the FCT Administration was also executing a number of projects in the satellite towns covering roads, water and power.

Malam Bello stated that most of the road projects inspected were significant in ensuring seamless traffic flow and further boosting economic activities within the city.

Commenting on the Greater Abuja Water Supply project which entails construction of water supply network, Malam Bello described it as a legacy project, and appealed for more funding in the budget to enable the FCTA get its counterpart funding for its execution.

He explained that, on completion, the project would ensure sufficient and uninterrupted supply of treated water to the whole city and its environs.

Addressing newsmen at the end of the second day of tour, Chairman Senate Committee on the FCT, Sen Tolulope Odebiyi again scored the FCT high in the execution of high quality projects in the territory.

The Senator who also pledged the continued support of his committee to the completion of the projects and provision of services in the FCT said: “I must commend the team of the FCTA for the extent of work they are doing, we have been highly impressed as we have seen a lot of ongoing projects.

“The greater Abuja Water works is also a very impressive work and time-sensitive project, because it is also being funded by the Chinese Exim bank. I think it is important for us to quickly take a look at that, so we can make up our part of the counterpart funding, so that we don’t run the risk of incompletion.

“But overall, I think they (FCTA) are focused on the right track, and we are going to give them the needed support as much as we can. We are also going to pressure them to make sure that they bring in as much revenue as possible, from their own part, and also impress on the Federal Government to support the development of Abuja.

Sen. Odebiyi explained that the project tour was also intended to catalogue the projects the FCTA  has embarked upon and hope to complete in the few remaining months left of the administration as well as what their priority projects were.

“It is just in time for when they are going to present their budget, so we can know which project to prioritise. Obviously, we don’t have infinite amount of funds, so we can know which funds should be made available for which project”, he added.

Speaking of alternative funding for the FCT, the Chairman said: “The way Abuja is, obviously all the developments cannot be done based on their (FCTA) own internal statutory funding alone, we have to take a look at where the Federal Government can come in, and increase what their own contribution is to Abuja, in order for them to complete these projects.

“Abuja is increasing every day in size in terms of the number of people coming into the city, and the pressure on the city is getting more and more, and the demand for infrastructure is also increasing every day.

“The sooner we complete some of these projects the better. We are going to sit with the FCTA to get those priority projects that they think we can complete before May of next year, and those are the ones we are going to be focusing our support on, and see how we can assist them in completing them”.

 

18.   Speaking on the Greater Abuja Water project, the Deputy Managing Director, CGCOC – the contractors handling the project, Mr. Fan Xiao Jiang said when completed, it will convey 480,000 cubic meters  and serve treated water to 2.5 million residents.

 

19.  He said, so far, 420 kilometers pipe has been buried deep under the ground. Order has been placed for 221 kilometer pipes, out of which 180 kilometer of pipes have already arrived on site. The project is expected to be completed in November 2023

 

20.  Other projects inspected include extension of Inner Southern Expressway (ISEX), access road to Kukuwaba rail station, access road to institutions district, Greater Abuja Water Supply and the N20 road project.

 

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