The Federal Government has allocated a substantial amount of three trillion naira In the 2024 budget to create a million housing units. These shelters will serve as resettlement homes, aiming to provide adequate living conditions for the internally displaced persons (IDP) scattered nationwide. During her visit to the Idu IDP camp in Abuja, Dr. Betta Edu, the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation, revealed an ambitious plan. She expressed that the government aims to construct one million shelters across Nigeria, primarily for impoverished citizens, internally displaced persons, and refugees. This would ultimately result in providing housing for approximately five million Nigerians.
Every single one of these shelters had a budget of 3 million assigned to ensure their timely completion. This financial allocation has a significant bearing on their budget for the year 2024. It is important to recollect that the government recently gave its support to the humanitarian trust fund, which encompasses a 30 percent contribution from the government itself. The remaining 70 percent is derived from various sources, including the development partners, the private sector, donor agencies, and generous individuals who believe in philanthropy, among others.’
10 million was budgeted for building the project samples by IDPs.
Within a span of 10 days, ten million naira was directed towards the expeditious creation of samples to embody the forthcoming project. These prototypes were crafted by engaging labourers from the IDP community, intending to showcase the completed endeavour. Two samples of the shelters have been promptly constructed, representing two different layouts, a one-bedroom and a two-bedroom. The local community took charge of building these samples, ensuring that they were tailored to their own needs. Additionally, they proved to be highly cost-effective, with construction costs totalling under 3 million naira. Impressively, the entire building process was completed within a mere 10-day timeframe.
Furthermore, the intriguing aspect lies in their aim to incorporate the solar system, granting the poor, susceptible refugees and internally displaced individuals autonomy from the national power system. This integration ensures they can cater to their elementary electricity requirements, encompassing lights, phone charging, and rudimentary ironing, without reliance on the conventional power grid. Inspecting them and assuming control, they have arrived to take charge of the one-bedroom and two-bedroom units constructed as prototypes for the shelter initiative administered by the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Poverty Alleviation.
Adequate housing will be provided for the affected individuals.
Considering the severe nature of their struggle against multidimensional destitution, with one aspect being the absence of adequate housing. During their visit to Benue, they encountered countless individuals who had been displaced and were now enduring cramped conditions within their temporary shelters. They saw a family of either five or six in a tiny, waterproof dwelling. They endure the rainfall and sunlight directly, an entirely unacceptable situation, especially for the young children amongst them. This is why President Bola Ahmed Tinubu insists that it is their responsibility to assist these communities by aiding in constructing dignified homes built with their own hands.
Also, a contractor would not be responsible for the construction of this project. Instead, the community will take charge and build it themselves. By doing so, they will gain empowerment and a sense of ownership. They are training young individuals in various building skills, allowing them to be integral parts of the initiative. This opportunity also gives them the dignity of constructing the very houses they will reside in. Consequently, this sense of ownership instils deep respect within the community, ensuring they will not engage in any vandalism or destruction.
A significant milestone has been achieved in the state.
Lastly, according to Dr. Edu, an extraordinary milestone has been reached in Benue state with regard to the project. At present, the team has accomplished the clearance of about 10 hectares, which are designated for the construction of 40 remarkable houses. Concurrently, the drilling of a borehole to cater to the water requirements of the development is currently in progress. Following this, the subsequent step will involve the establishment and proper laying of the foundation for the structures.