Why NASS Complex’ll Not Be Ready Till August -FCDA

…As FEC Approves Over N200b Projects for FCT

By: Wisdom Acka

Despite pressure for the remodelling of the National Assembly Complex to be completed before inauguration of the 10th Assembly, the Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA) has said that the National Parliament Building will not be ready till August.

Executive Secretary, FCDA, Engr. Shehu Hadi Ahmad, during Tuesday Press Briefing in his office, explained that the enormity of work required for a world class parliament building was such that should not be rushed so as to avoid past mistakes, deliver excellent and lasting results to permanently resolve the challenges of leaky roofs and inconvenient sitting arrangements, among others.

Ahmad disclosed that in the course of the N19 billion renovation, remodelling, air-conditioning and furnishings works, FCDA team visited some of world’s best parliamentary structures including the 17th century built parliament building in Rome and that of the European Union in Brussels, Belgium.

According to him, the comfort and convenience of parliamentarians in the two chambers -the Senate and House of Representatives was of paramount importance for smooth legislative and budgetary duties.

The Executive Secretary, who noted that the Authority has never had it this good as under the FCT Minister, Muhammad Musa Bello, further disclosed that multi-billion naira projects under his supervision were recently given approvals by the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meetings.

He revealed that barely two weeks ago, approval was granted for the provision of engineering infrastructure to Maitama II, a new District created by Muhammad Musa Bello, during his first tenure.

The N184 billion project awarded to Dantata and Sawoe, with 24 months competition period, will necessitate commencement of the development of a Diaspora City, which is contiguous to the new district.

He stated that the FCT Administration was working on providing access road to Maitama II District, by extending ring I to 10-Lane Expressway up to Nasarawa State and getting the State to also construct its end; assuring that the developments would provide an alternative route and resolve the perennial traffic situation on the Abuja-Keffi route.

The FCDA boss aso revealed that other contracts recently approved for award by FEC include the construction of three solid waste transfer stations in Mpape, Apo and Kubwa; provision of electric power and water supply to Apo-Tafyi Federal Integrated Staff Housing site and access road and car park for Abuja Light Rail at Stadium and Kukwaba Stations.

Assuring that the Apo-Karshi road was also ongoing and would be completed, the Executive Secretary stated that other projects also approved by FEC include the construction of 15km road from A2 Junction (Abuja-Lokoja Road) to Pai in Kwali Area Council; as well as the construction of Nanda-Pandagi-Dangara-Agyena Road.

According to him, the FCT Administration also received approval for the revised cost for the contraction and equipping of the 220-Bed Gwarinpa District Hospital.

Ahmad averred that the Bello administration has had to provide access roads to almost all the rail stations, even as he added contracts, at ministerial level, have been awarded for resurfacing of old and dilapidated roads in most parts of Wuse and Garki.

Noting that government could not do it all alone, the Executive Secretary recalled that the Bello-led FCTA has successfully commenced development of a first ever district under the Land for Infrastructure programme, a Public-Private Partnership (PPP) model in the nation’s capital.