Bello lauds FCT youths for supporting President Buhari’s re-election initiative

Stories by Cosmas Uzodinma

Minister of Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Malam Muhammad Musa Bello, has commended members of Original Inhabitants Youth Empowerment Organization for their pledge to ensure the victory of President Muhammadu Buhari in the forthcoming elections.

Malam Bello made the declaration when he received the youth organization during a solidarity visit on him in his office last week.

The Minister recalled the state of affairs in the country when the present administration came to office and stressed that the work of rebuilding and restoring the fortunes of the nation could not have been possible just within three and half years.

Bello underscored the need to give President Buhari another four years to consolidate on the remarkable achievements recorded so far and to take Nigeria to the next level.

The Minister also noted that it would be very pertinent to elect those who would work with the President in order to ensure that the dividends of democracy cascade down through the various tiers of government as well as the Senate and House of Representatives.  

On the efforts made to clear arrears of severance benefits owed former councilors and political assistants by successive administrations, the Minister stated that he was merely implementing the directive of the President who always identifies with the plight of the common man and is an advocate for justice and the rule of law.

His words: “You would recall that the party we took over from was not APC, and definitely those who benefitted from the payments were not APC members, but we had to pay because it was at the root of humanity that anyone who works is entitled to the fruits of his labour.”

The Minister expressed surprise that some of the officials were still being owed and pledged to do something about it.

Earlier in his remarks, the president-general of the youth organization, Commander Isaac David, stated that the visit was to show appreciation to the Minister for the significant progress made in the Territory during his first term and for breaking what he described as the tradition of leaving former political office holders in lack as a result of non-payment of their severance packages.

His words: “But since this administration came to power, Honourable Minister, you have worked to reverse the trend by ensuring that all former councilors and political office holders are paid their severance packages.”

Also speaking at the meeting, a consultant, Mr. Chijioke Nwandikom underscored the preparedness of the group to work with the youth to ensure massive success for President Buhari at the polls. 

He noted that the FECPA is a formidable organization which is ready to partner with FCT Administration towards ensuring peace and development in the FCT. 

FCTA, Indian group partner for world-class Technology Varsity

Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) is set to partner with the Nigerian University of Technology and Management (NUTM) Project group to build a world-class University of Technology and Management in FCT.

Minister of FCT, Malam Muhammad Bello, who spoke while receiving executives of the group led by the Minister of Trade and Investment, Dr Okechukwu Enelamah, in his office in Abuja last Tuesday, said the project is in furtherance of FCTA’s plan to have specialized institutions in phases 4 and 5 of the Territory.

The Minister, while noting that Abuja has matured in terms of population and infrastructure, said FCTA will give the group all the support to ensure that the project is commenced as quickly as possible.

He said arrangements are being made in the interim to situate the project within the premises of the Abuja University of Technology,Abaji, or the Abuja Technology Village.

The Minister said: “We are now developing a new area of the city which is called phase 5 in the southern axis of the city and within phase 5, we are earmarking an area that could basically accommodate what you did in Hyderabad.

”It’s not just going to be yours alone, but other institutions that have similar ideas and we are doing so because we have a major arterial road network that is going to connect phase 3, 4 and phase 5 and part of it is under construction already.

“We are now concentrating on so many other things, the industrial zone, medical and even school facilities. Now even within the  educational system, we are now targeting more of specialized institutions because by the natural phase of growth, the city has reached a point where it requires that.”

Earlier, in his remarks, Dr Enelamah said Nigeria is very privileged to have a group of investors who have gone through the system, having been trained by such universities, contributed and given back to their own societies by building such institutions. He said they are now going beyond the call of duty to help Nigeria in building such a university.

Also speaking on the occasion, the Senior Advisor, NUTM, Rajat Gupta, emphasized that Public-Private Partnership would be required to create such world-class institution in the country.

Gupta disclosed that the project will require several years and possibly decades of commitment to make it worthwhile, adding, however, that its impact as an educational institution will be felt in the country for hundreds of years to come.

He said: “We started a business school in the middle of nowhere in the City of Hyderabad and there was nothing around it. We built the campus and we created the school and then everything started developing around it. A lot of businesses were incubated and a lot of global companies like Microsoft moved in; various technology and finance companies moved in and now it has become the most vibrant part of the city.”

The NUTM senior advisor hoped that the university would do for Nigeria what similar ones have done for Malaysia and India.