FG earmarks N2.6 bn for UN House reconstruction — Minister

The Federal Government has earmarked N 2.6 billion for the rebuilding of the UN House in Abuja, which was bombed by terrorists a year ago.

The Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Bala Mohammed, announced the plan on Monday when he with officials of the UN System in Nigeria visited the Foreign Affairs Ministry in commemoration of the first year of the attack.

Mr. Mohammed said the government had earlier spent N600 million in acquiring office accommodation for displaced UN agencies following the bombing.
He said the reconstruction process was delayed following the absence of experts to conduct integrity test on the building but added that the examination had been completed.
“We have also provided N2.6 billion for the remediation of the building in addition to the N600million earlier approved by President Jonathan.
“The building was built by the Federal Government. Therefore, it became the responsibility of government to put it in order.
“We have already secured the building and the integrity test because we had no experts to do this in Nigeria.
“We had to fly people through Julius Berger into the country and the integrity test has now been concluded and so we are in the process of awarding,’’ the minister said.
The Foreign Affairs Minister, Olugbenga Ashiru, said the gesture showed government’s concern and seriousness in handling the unfortunate incident.
“As we remember the victims today, there is no better memory than the fact that government has taken action not just on their behalf but also to ensure that work is being done to put your building back,’’ Mr. Ashiru said.
Similarly, Daouda Toure, the Resident Coordinator, UN System in Nigeria, reaffirmed that the organisation would continue its mission to assist in improving the lives of poor people to conquer hunger, disease and illiteracy.
“On this occasion of the one year anniversary, the UN team in Nigeria once again presents its deepest condolences to the families of victims.

“The UN Country Team also expresses gratitude to several institutions and state governments which have made available temporary offices for various UN agencies during this period of the forced displacement of UN staff and officials,’’ Mr. Toure said.

The religious sect, Boko Haram, last year claimed that it carried out the August 26 attack in which 23 people died, among whom were 13 non-UN staff members.


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