The Akwa Ibom State House of Assembly has passed a bill for a law to provide social housing scheme for low- and middle-income earners.
The scheme will be set up alongside an agency to manage it and other related matters, the House Chairman on Lands, Housing and Urban Renewal, Hon. Otobong Akpan announced.
“The bill will provide shelter, and thus, mitigate the people’s suffering through the creation of a formidable environment for development and sustainable livelihood”, he said.
While noting that the scheme, when completed, will be applauded by all, the Lawmaker stressed that it was primarily for workers in the state whose income cannot get them an accommodation of their own.
The Committee Chairman stated this at the public hearing held at the Old Chapel of the Assembly’s Complex in Uyo on Friday, May 17, where he called for inputs from other Lawmakers to aid the final drafting of the bill.
In his remarks, the Speaker of the State Assembly, Barr Onofiok Luke, said the bill leverages on the vision of the State Governor, Mr. Udom Emmanuel, to build a social housing scheme for the betterment of the people’s welfare.
The Speaker, through his Deputy, Mrs. Felicia Bassey, stated that the scheme was one of the pivotals for the 6th Assembly seeking to not only provide affordable housing for the poor and low-income earners, but to also touch and change their lives whilst spearheading the development of the community.
Contributing to the bill were the Chairman, Nigerian Institute of Estate Surveyors and Valuers, Mr. John Isangedighi, who applauded the State Legislature for considering the welfare of low-income earners – an initiative he observed has never occurred before; Chairman, Nigerian Institute of Building, Akwa Ibom State Chapter, Mr Ita Abakada; Commissioner of Justice and Attorney-General of the state, Barr Uwemedimo Nwoko, represented by Barr Ofonime Etuknwa; Commissioner, Ministry of Housing and Urban Renewal, represented by Mr. E.S. Okonko; Chairman, Nigerian Institute of Architect, Mr. Abimbola Okey among others.