The Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) on Wednesday disbursed the sum of N1.2 billion as Home Renovation Loan to 1, 207 personnel of the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), across the country.
Managing Director of the bank, Mr Ahmed Dangiwa who made the presentation of the cheque in Abuja said of the figure, N640 million was for 640 beneficiaries in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).
According to Dangiwa, this is in addition to the sum of N1.8 billion approved for 195 staff of the corps as mortgage loans for the purchase of their own houses.
“This is a clear demonstration of the Corps Marshal’s unique concern for the welfare of the FRSC members through collaboration with FMBN to address their housing needs.
“It is pertinent to note that a total sum of N15.7 billion has so far been disbursed by the bank to 19,169 beneficiaries across the country under the Home Renovation Loan window.”
He said that the FMBN was a leading player in the housing and construction sector of the Nigerian economy.
“It has a mandate to provide affordable mortgages to Nigerian workers particularly low and medium income earners through the National Housing Fund (NHF) scheme.
He said the fund was sourced from 2.5 per cent of the basic income of Nigerian workers earning the minimum wage and who were 18 years and above.
He said the overall objective was to provide cheap source of loan-able funds to nurture and sustain the mortgage industry and facilitate affordable home-ownership for the low and medium income earners.
“Section 14(2) of the National Housing Fund Act Cap N.45 of 1992 stipulates that a contributor to the Fund can access a loan from the Fund for the purpose of building, purchasing or renovating of existing homes or houses.
“In other to achieve this, FMBN has developed concessionary loan windows to enable Nigerians access to mortgages for home ownership,” he said.
He however said that the bank’s objectives had been hampered by challenges including lack of access to land, inadequate funding for the housing sector and inaccessibility of mortgage loans due to lack of proper title to landed properties.
“In consideration of these challenges, it became necessary for FMBN to develop some quick-wins that will allow a greater number of Nigerians, access to the National Housing Fund, consequently, the FMBN Renovation Loan was introduced by the bank.”
He explained that the loan window afforded Nigerians who were contributors to the Fund an opportunity to access mortgage loans to renovate or improve existing properties which were personally owned by them or through family ownership.
“We have also given succour to Nigerians with the cancellation of equity requirement for NHF loans under N5 million and a reduction in equity percentage payment to 10 per cent for loans from N5 million to N15 million from the initial 20 per cent to 30 per cent.”
In his remark, FRSC Corps Marshal, Mr Boboye Oyeyemi said “When we came on board in 2014, one of the first things I told the staff was that I would ensure ‘one man, one house’and we have a workforce of over 20,000 staff.
“I am happy we have made tremendous progress in respect of this.
“We want people to be happy after retirement. I want people to have a life after retirement, people to be comfortable after retirement,” Oyeyemi said.
2019 Elections: The Army staged a coup against Rivers state – Wike
Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike, has stated that the Nigerian Army staged a coup against Rivers State during the 2019 General Elections, describing their actions as the worst in the nation’s democratic history.
Addressing the Joint House of Representatives Committees on Army, Police, Human Rights and Justice at the Government House Port Harcourt on Monday, Governor Wike said that the Nigerian Army acted illegally because they were working to impose a pre-determined leadership on Rivers State.
He said: “It is really unfortunate. All of us know that there was a coup in this state, organised by the Nigerian Army. In the history of this country, it has never happened where during an ordinary election, the Army will begin to kill people for no just cause.
“Because they believe a particular person or a particular party must win, it doesn’t matter how many people die. It was shown on National Television. We watched how the Army invaded the whole Electoral Commission “.
He regretted that the Federal Government has never worked to assist Rivers State Government fight insecurity.
“This is the only state the Federal Government has never assisted to fight insecurity. Instead of us to team up and fight insecurity, you politicize it.
“Even if you make recommendations, nothing will happen. I don’t know whether we are in a military regime or Civil Administration”, he said.
The Governor noted that aside the Army, the Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad (F-SARs) has been a major anti-democratic force in the state, since the 2016 rerun elections.
He pointed out that the F-SARs murdered a Ph.D. Holder and Chartered Accountant in cold blood simply because they wanted to subvert the will of the people.
Governor Wike wondered why the General Officer Commanding 6 Division of the Nigerian Army is still unpunished, despite the negative roles he played during the elections.
“The GOC here is a politician. Nothing has happened to him because he was sent. If it was when the country was a country, you cannot be keeping that GOC. He is sabotaging the security network “, he said.
He suggested that urgent measures be taken to rejig the security architecture of the country, in view of the nation-wide security challenges.
The Governor said rather than address the security challenges facing the country, security agencies move against critics of security failures.
Earlier, Chairman of the House of Representatives Committee on Army, Rimande Shawule Kwewum said that were in the state to investigate killings by the F-SARs on the basis of a motion by the Member Representing Obio/Akpor Federal Constituency, Mr. Kingsley Chinda on the killing of Dr. Ferry Gberegbe during the elections.
He said that the joint House of Representatives Committees are in the state are on a fact-finding mission.
He said that the Committees will sit down and allow all the stakeholders to state their positions for the committee to arrive at the truth and make relevant recommendations.
The Federal Lawmaker said that there is a correlation between insecurity and under-development. He said that countries that suffer insecurity hardly make progress.
Dabiri-Erewa lauds Buhari over release of Zainab Aliyu
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Foreign Affairs and Diaspora, Mrs. Abike Dabiri-Erewa has lauded President Muhammadu Buhari for facilitating the release of two Nigerians arrested in Saudi Arabia.
Zainab Aliyu, a student of Maitama Sule University, Kano, who embarked on Lesser Hajj in Dec. 2018, was detained by the Saudi Arabia authorities for allegedly being in possession of banned substances.
Ibrahim Abubakar, another Nigerian, was also detained by Saudi authority for alleged drug-related offence.
However, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mustapha Sulaiman on Tuesday in Abuja announced the release of the two Nigerian detainees by Saudi authority
Dabiri-Erewa, who gave the commendation in an interview with News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja, said Buhari’s timely intervention saved the two Nigerians from being punished for offence they did not commit.
“We thank God and thank President Muhammadu Buhari for his immediate intervention.
“When we brought the matter to him about two weeks ago, he immediately directed the Attorney General of the Federation to ensure Zainab and Ibrahim were released.
“All I can say is, I am happy that this young promising girl did not get punished for an offense she did not commit,” she said.
The presidential aid, however, expressed concern over the authority’s was handling of case of the suspects, who allegedly planted banned substances in Zainab’s bag at the airport.
“My worry is that those who set her up are now on bail. NDLEA must ensure prosecution of those culpable.
“Egypt Air and Ethiopian Air must ensure compulsory baggage identification of passengers.
“All the cases we have had so far have involved only those two airlines. Security surveillance at our airports must also be strengthened,” she said
The permanent secretary had said that the release was as a result of intense diplomatic engagements between the Nigeria and Saudi Arabia.
He said that the ministry made great effort to establish their innocence.
Suleiman noted that the government had raised several note verbal with the Saudi Embassy in Abuja and their Consulate in Kano over the matter.
He said that the news of her release was heartwarming to the government and Zainab’s family. (NAN)
Dangote donates 2,160-bed hostel to ABU
AFRICA’S foremost businessman and Aliko Dangote Foundation Chairman Alhaji Aliko Dangote donated at the weekend a 2,160-bed space hostel complex to the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria, Kaduna State.
The hostel, comprising 10 blocks of 360 rooms, built at N1.2 billion, is coming after similar gestures to Bayero University, Kano and University of Ibadan, Ibadan, where the business mogul donated multi-billion naira business school complexes, respectively as part of his contribution to the education development in the country.
The inauguration of the hall of residence coincided with ABU’s 41st convocation during which the varsity conferred on Dangote and the renowned Labour leader Hassan Sumonu, honourary Doctorate degrees.
Also 15,787 graduating students were also awarded various degrees.
The President of Dangote Group explained that he was moved to build the structure having realised that the students’ population at the universities have recorded significant increase without a corresponding growth in terms of infrastructure.
He lamented that the situation has remained a subsisting and growing major challenge as public varsities grapple with under-funding.
Dangote said: “Thus, I will like to use this opportunity to enjoin the Federal Government to consider allocating special funds to the universities to enable them to improve on research and upgrade their infrastructure. Such special intervention has become imperative given the perennial funding challenges facing our universities.”
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