The Minister of Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Raji Fashola has declared that the Ministry is strategizing towards playing a vital role in supporting President Mohammadu Buhari’s determination to create 10 million jobs for Nigerians, especially for the teeming youths.
He made the declaration today at the 25th meeting of the National Council on Works in Calabar, Cross River State. The theme of the Council Meeting is ‘’Infrastructure as the pathway for prosperity’’ which according to him was carefully chosen to address the complex issues of road infrastructure development in the country with the view to proffering tangible solutions to some of the problems in Nigeria, thereby giving the good people of Nigeria qualitative services they deserve.
Fashola who was ably represented by the Minister of State for Works and Housing, Engr. Abubakar D. Aliyu maintained that it behoves on all Stakeholders in the Works sector to find new enduring possibilities on how to establish the link between infrastructure development and job creation, poverty alleviation and empowerment of the informal sector in ensuring that the 10 million jobs target for the next ten years by Mr. President was achieved.
The Minister disclosed that his Ministry would effectively collaborate with other relevant agencies saddled with similar responsibilities of monitoring, maintenance and survey of roads network in Nigeria with the view to develop them to the desired standard.
He commended the Government and the people of Cross River State for providing a safe and conducive environment for the 25th Meeting of the National Council on Works and hosting the prestigious annual International Calabar Carnival event which according to him has made the ancient city, not only a global home for entertainment but also a veritable economic hub to reckon with in South- South Nigeria.
In his address, the Executive Governor of Cross River State, His Excellency, Prof. Ben. Ayade who was represented by his Deputy, Prof. Ivara Esu urged the Federal Road Maintenance Agency to rise up to the challenge of road maintenance. ‘’We have thrown overboard our maintenance culture, let us revive our road maintenance culture, let us maintain the roads so that the failing path will not expand the more’’ he said.
While commending the Management and staff of the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing, and all the Stakeholders in the Works Sector for considering his state worthy to host the 25th Meeting of the National Council on Works, Ayade called on Federal Government to reconstruct the failed highways in his State with concrete , adding that the Ikom, Itu, Bakasi and Katsina-Ala highways were vital and of Scio- economic importance to Cross River State in particular and Nigeria in general.