What Buhari’s longest FEC meeting discussed Wednesday

Pic 19. FEC MEETING
From left: Vice President Yemi Osinbajo; President Muhammadu Buhari; Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN); Minister of Agriculture, Chief Audu Ogbe and Minister of Stste for Agriculture, Sen Heinekaen Lokpobiri during the Federal Executive Council Meeting in Abuja on Wednesday (20/12/17) /20/12/2017/Callistus Ewelike/NAN

The longest meeting of the Federal Executive Council presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday approved a number of memos submitted by cabinet members.

The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, who was part of the team of four ministers who briefed State House correspondents at the end of the meeting, said the council approved the completion of the Police Service Commission headquarters in Abuja.

The meeting continues on Thursday.

Mr. Fashola said the project was approved for variation to enable its completion over the next six months.

He also said the initial cost of the project was N3.486 billion. But it has been increased to 3.925 billion, following the variation of N439.113 million.

He said council also approved additional funding to complete the Nnamdi Azikiwe Mausoleum in Anambra State. He said the project was started but not completed by the previous administration.

“Council approved the additional funding to complete it from N1.496 billion to N1.953 billion.”

Mr. Fashola said FEC also approved various road projects such as the Abuja-Kaduna-Zaria to Kano road at the cost of N155.7 billion and the Efire-Araromi-Aiyede-Aiyela road to connect Ondo and Ogun States at the cost of N14.4 billion.

He also said for the Enugu-Onitsha highway the Amansia section, FEC approved the variations of the cost of N38.74 billion to enable the contractor progress with the work.

“Council also approved the awarded part at the Umunya section at the cost of N23.4 billion. So if you add that N38.74 billion which was the cost of the Amansea section, you will get a total approved cost of N62.06 billion.”

“This contract was first awarded for N24 billion in 2014 but the scale of work done is, to say the least, appalling,” he said.

Mr. Fashola said FEC also approved funds for interventions in education and healthcare sectors and equally approved the provision of independent power plant to nine universities and one teaching hospital.

He said the first phase of the pilot programme to cover 37 universities is put at the cost of N38.965 billion. The project is to provide dedicated power to the universities which include street lighting and workshops to train the students post-completion.

On his part, the Minister of Water Resources, Sulaiman Adamu, said council ratified the augmentation of funds to complete Adada dam in Igbo-atiti Local Government Area in Enugu State, with the aim to provide water to the university town of Nsukka.

He said the project comprises of a dam and some kilometres of pipeline to supply water to some communities along the route and to the water treatment plant.

The minister said, “The Enugu State Government is expected to take the conveyance system from where we stop from the water treatment plant into Nsukka town and provide the necessary distribution, storage and reservoirs.

“The project was started in 2010. This project has been augmented and council approved that the project be completed now at N5.6 billion by the end of 2018.”

“Council also approved the augmentation of phase II Galma Dam and irrigation project in Zaria, Kaduna State. The purpose of the dam is to provide water to Zaria town and environs. The phase I dam has already been completed while phase II involves irrigation and some additional structures. So there was an augmentation to raise the project to N16.5 billion in favour of Gilmore Nig. LTD.

“Council also approved the review of construction fee for Uguashi-Ukwu dam project in Delta State. The project is almost 100 per cent completed but because of the extension of time over the years, we have to ratify the need to pay consultants for staying on site to oversee that project. So council approved the sum of N133.6 million,” Mr. Adamu said.

The Minister of Transport, Rotimi Amaechi, who also spoke at the briefing, said FEC approved the production and distribution of core text books for early education classes 1-3 and for primary 4-6 in public schools nationwide.

He said the federal government felt the need to support the funding of education at that level at the cost of N6.9 billion.

“Council also gave approval for completion of Jos Central Library and the construction of the faculty of animal sciences and engineering,” he said.

Speaking on his ministry, Mr. Amaechi said he had gotten approval for two vessels, called pilot cutters, to escort vessels into the seaport. He said prior to this time, the Nigerian Ports Authority, NPA, borrowed such vessels. “Now we have approval for NPA to buy theirs at the cost of N1.9 billion,” he said.

He said council also approved another two vessels of 17 meters in the eastern port that will help monitor and assist vessels into the seaport at the cost of N1.2 billion.

“Council also approved the award of contract for direct procurement, installation and commissioning of Wide Area of multi-lateration for the Gulf of Guinea at the cost of N3.9 billion. This is to help capture those equipment flying below the radar, for us to be able to pick them because it will be dangerous if we cannot because a lot of them use helicopters.

“There was also an approval for the consultancy services to construct a new terminal building at Mallam Aminu Kano Airport. We just want to complete the payment which is at N621 million.

“Council also approved the purchase of flight calibration inspection at the cost of N111.6 million.

“One other key project that was approved is the engagement of consultants for the project management, monitoring and evaluation including media and public relations services of the United Nations Environment Programme, UNEP report on Ogoni land.

“The president has also directed that remediation should start immediately and so the processes for remediation should come to council within the next six months so that we can commence the activities of reclaiming the land from the disastrous stage that it is now.

“The president reminded the cabinet that he was in Ogoni during the campaign and had promise that the UNEP report will be carried out,” he said.

The Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Mohammed Bello, while speaking said Council approved the completion of the Goodluck Jonathan Way in the FCT that links traffic from Keffi-Nyanya into the city.

“We got an augmentation of an additional N3.8 billion and with the funding the road will be completed any moment from now.

“Council also approved a critical project which is the Infrastructure development of Wasa resettlement site sitting on about 695 hectares at the cost N26 billion.

“The infrastructure development will include the construction of 198 roads within the settlement area totalling about 88.95 kilometres. The project is meant to move about 13 indigenous communities in the FCT in that area,” Mr. Bello said.


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