FEC approves constitution of team to sell, repurpose abandoned, uncompleted buildings – Veloxnews

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From Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja The hybrid Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting, presided over by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, has approved the setting up of a team under the direction of the finance minister to examine, repurpose, privatize, or transfer ownership of unfinished and abandoned government structures across the nation.The team will look into projects from the last five years.Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, Clement Agba, who briefed alongside his colleagues, Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed and Agriculture and Rural Development, Mahmud Mohammed, explained that the council approved the creation of a data base of national capital projects Information System to track abandoned and uncompleted projects across the country.He said the system, which will be headed by the Minister of Finance, will prioritize and fund selected projects on a yearly basis while also leaving open the possibility of privatizing some of the projects, repurposing some for alternative use or completely abandoning others.He said any decision on the identified projects will be determined by the outcome of investigations.He also said council approved a contract for the construction of a new office block and parking lot worth over N14.8 billion for the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) in Lagos.Agba, said when completed, the office complex, which is to be located on 17b Awolowo Road, Lagos, will save the service about N4 billion that it usually pays on rented property.He revealed that the 12-storey building will also alleviate the traffic problems that the old FIRS office causes in the area.Council also approved for the purchase of property at Mumbai Estate, which is on Plot 21 Cadastral Zone E 23 for the Nigeria Customs Service’s residential accommodation at the sum of N14.405 billion.He said: “So, the service intends to purchase an asset consisting of 274 housing units, which are categorized as follows: 128 units of three bedroom flats, 96 units of two bedroom flats, and 50 units of three bedroom terrace duplexes and this is in favor of Messrs. Mobi Estate and Properties Limited, at the sum of N14.405 billion.“This has to do with the welfare of the Customs officers. Provision of residential accommodation, like you know, is a major incentive for officers and men towards improving their efficiency and productivity. Some of these officers are currently residing in hotels, some stay back in their offices and we think that that is not too good enough.“So, the service intends to purchase an asset consisting of 274 housing units, which are categorized as follows: 128 units of three bedroom flats, 96 units of two bedroom flats, and 50 units of three bedroom terrace duplexes and this is in favor of Messrs. Mobi Estate and Properties Limited, to the sum of N14.405 billion.” Agba said council also approved for the Nigeria Customs Service and in favor of three companies; Messrs. Perkes Engineering Limited, Cosgrove Investment Limited and Tranquil Energy Limited, the purchase of laptops for training and CBT examinations for the Customs Cadets, construction of two numbers 30 rooms, male cadets hostels and one number 30 rooms, female cadets hostel at Customs Training College in Kano and for the supply of 703 laptop computers, with mouse for the training school.He said Messrs Packets Engineering Ltd is to supply of 720 nos probook laptop for training and CBT examinations at the cost of N391,755,800.00.Messrs Cosgrove Investment Ltd- Construction of 2 Nos 30 rooms Make cadets hostels and 1 no 30 troops female cadets hostel at Customs Training College, Kano at the cost of N794,341,905.48Messes Tranquil Energy Ltd is to supply of 703 no probook laptop computers with mouse for training schools at the cost of N382,396,850.00.On his part, the minister of agriculture and rural development reaffirmed that there was no food scarcity in the nation.He acknowledged that some commodities had high costs and that inflation was not unique to Nigeria, arguing instead that it was a global problem brought on by a variety of factors, including the Russian-Ukrainian war.Mohammed said:” Yes, I have said that time and time that currently, we do not have food shortage, there is no food shortage. High prices in some commodities, inflation, yes, is currently the same, just about everywhere around the world, for different reasons.“Still the after effect of COVID, where supply chains have not totally open. Climate change is an issue and the current Ukraine, Russian war, there are a number of things. Different countries are tackling it based on their own peculiarity but currently is world phenomena. What are we doing to reduce this? And that I have also mentioned, one of the things is to make sure, first of all, that there is food in the country, supply and demand. That’s why we are making sure that we’ll do the dry season farming.“We know that a lot of farmlands have been flooded and we will lose some crops from the rainy season. So we want to make up for that. And it’s not just the ministry even the central bank, you know, are involved in agricultural production. So we are banking on making sure that we do that.“The President is 100% behind the augmentation of food production and we’ll do that. So I’m assuring you again, there will be no food shortage, we are working on bringing down inflation. Another memo that was approved about three weeks ago was on Farm Gate pricing. Farm Gate pricing is a situation where middlemen and even foreigners will go to the point of harvest and buy, we have prevented that because it increases the amount of produce in the market and also reduces the the intake of the farmers themselves. So we have stopped that and many other things.“In the distribution of grains, we’re also helping certain commodity value chains with grains at maybe 75% discount so that they can produce feed, which will now cut their cost of production. And they will be able to sell their commodities less. So that we are able to possibly make sure that there will be no food shortage.”The minister of Agriculture and Rural Development said Council approved the revised National Animal Health Policy.Mohammed explained that purpose of the memo is to revise the previous policy that deals with animal health.According to him, the revision became necessary following a lot happenings that brought to the fore, the critical importance of animal health.Mohammed said “we must be very conscious of how healthy the animals are whether they are our pets, livestock that we either use for food or for whatever reasons. Because we realize the frequency of zoonotic diseases, that is diseases coming from animals to infect humans seem to be on the rise.“There is also the trans boundary diseases, meaning maybe animals from another country, through going and coming, can infect animals here and then can infect humans. So the importance really is if we just focus on us humans to be healthy, and the animals around us are unhealthy, then it is grossly wrong.“So this is the reason for this memo. So we have increased our tracing or caring for the animals, discovering new diseases, or vaccinating these animals. For example we just flagged of the vaccination of dogs that may have rabies, because if they do, they can infect humans. And not just viruses, even bacteria can be harbored in animals and can be transmitted to humans.“So the purpose of the new policy is to upgrade on the old policy to make sure it’s comprehensive. And this is based on a new concept of one health, one health meaning human health and animal health can be considered as one because one can cause an adverse effect especially animals to humans.“So this is basically really the purpose of this policy and has been approved. And this is in collaboration with states government just so that you know, states have been carried along. Other stakeholders have been carried along. And the whole purpose is to make sure that there’s a holistic cooperation and implementation of the policy.“Council also approved the procurement of medical equipment and furniture for the ongoing construction of one of the prototype Aviation Medical Centers at the Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport in Abuja.Lai Mohammed, who briefed on behalf of the minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, said: “ In other words, we are building Aviation Medical Centers in all the airports and this is the first prototype at Abuja and the contract was approved for the supply of medical equipment and furniture, to the tune of N1,000,684,789.32, with the delivery period of six months and the contractor is Tasodic Sodica Limited.”       



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