This was disclosed by the Minister of State for Power, Works and Housing, Mustapha Shehuri, at the end of FEC meeting chaired by President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Shehuri was with the Minister of State for Aviation, Hadi Sirika, Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Okechukwu Enelamah and the Senior Special Assistant on Media and publicity, Garba Shehu.
He said that FEC approved N5.9 billion for the construction of 16.7 kilometers Suleja-Chaaza-Banguru road and spur to Rafinsayin in Niger State.
“It also provided for 15 meters of bridge construction,” he added.
He went on “Another memo approved is the dualization of Ilorin-Jebba-Mokwa-Bokani road in Kwara and Niger states to CGC at the cost of N130 billion. The contract’s life span is 36 months.
“The Council also approved construction of Ibi Bridge across River Benue connecting Taraba and Plateau states at the cost of N57 billion.” he stated
Enelamah said that FEC also approved memo for effective implementation of project ‘Made in Nigeria’ for export.
He said that it was aimed at developing world class export oriented special economic zones in the six geopolitical zones of Nigeria.
“The plan is to begin the development of those economic zones across the six geopolitical zones as follows: Lagos, Katsina, Abia, Calabar, Kano.
“In addition, the Council also approved pre-development work in develop of Green Field Special Economic Zone in Akwa Ibom, Benue, Ebonyi, Edo, Gombe, Kwara, and Sokoto states with further roll out to other states in phase two.” he said
He said that FEC approved payments to consultations totalling N2.655 billion for various projects that will be undertaken by different consultations that will lead to implementation of these zones.
He added “This is for one set of consultants. The aggregate amount which includes another set is N3.172 billion for all the special economic zones
“The total budget for developing these zones will be in excess N250 billion and it will include partners.This is going to be done through something called The Nigerian Special Economic Zones Company Limited, which is a public private partnership.
“The Federal Government is going to own 20 percent of that company and AFRIEXIM bank is going to be a shareholder and other investors like the Nigerian Sovereign Investment Authority and other international investors. It is going to be developed in such a way that it will be world class. We are going to see rapid implementation now that council approval has been obtained,” he said.
He said that his Ministry also got approvals for two specific things including strict compliance with the provisions of Executive Order 001 and that all Ministries Departments and Agencies (MDAs) to respond to complains within 72 hours timeline on government portal.
On the Brookings report that Nigeria has already overtaken India as the country with the largest number of extreme poor in early 2018, Enelamah said “I think first, we need to understand when we get these reports that there are reports that are lagging in indicators which means, people are reporting on history. There are reports that are leading indicators which means that they are forward looking and of course, there reports that capture generally what you do which is current. They are actually dealing with what is current. So, when you get reports from Brooking institutes or all sorts of people, you need to look at the context.
“Somebody may have written a report when we were in recession. Remember that if you are in a recession, what it means is that even though, your population is growing, people don’t stop procreating, your growth fact, which means that in theory depending on how they run those numbers, you will be going the other way.
“There is absolutely no question that there an urgency to create employment in Nigeria. And it has to be a collective responsibility. What I can tell you, with certainty based on ones background in business and economics, is that if we complete the things on infrastructure and you implement these reports we are doing, that is what I mean by a leading indicator, poverty will go down.
“There is no magic to it. But you have to do it first, you have put in the infrastructure, you have to implement the economic programme which is what will create the opportunities, they don’t drop from the sky. So, I think we should roll up our sleeves as a people and do the work because, if we don’t do it, our people continue to bear children obviously, they would get poorer.
“So, I don’t think we should kill ourselves that poverty is something just happen. I think comes out of the urgent need we have as a country which is why we are focusing as a government to make sure that we create the enabling environment, the infrastructure that and the things that are required to create opportunities for our people and I believe that will happen in the process of time,” he said.
Sirika said that Council approved N993 million to build simulator house for the point 373 simulator already procured in Zaria.
According to him, the Council also noted the seasonal rain prediction report by NIMET towards giving accurate rainfall across the country.
Garba Shehu disclosed that the Minister of Education got one approval for JAMB.
He said “JAMB had run computer-based tests for people who seek admissions into universities in order to stop leakages and all that. They have started to set up their infrastructures for conducting those examinations.
“Today, they requested for government to buy one of the Computer Based Test (CBT) organizations at N133 million including infrastructure and equipment.
“The effort is that JAMB wants to take total control of all these examinations in order to avoid leakages,” he stated.
He also disclosed that the Council approved N353 million for the procurement of 32 meter turntable ladder to fight fire up-to 12 floors in the FCT.
Source: The Nation