How FG incurred N956bn liabilities on road, housing projects – Fashola 

Outstanding liabilities owed contractors handling road and housing projects across the country stands at N956billion as at September 2022, said the Minister of Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola.

Fashola who stated this on Wednesday at separate 2023 budget defence sessions with the Senate Committees  on Works and Housing, also lamented over drastic budget cuts earmarked for the two sectors in the 2023 fiscal year .

Out of the N956 billion outstanding liabilities, the federal government is owing contractors handling the National Housing Scheme N191.75billion  while the remaining balance of N765 billion is owed contractors handling road projects across the country  from the total contract value of N10.4 trillion.

Specifically in his submissions before the Senate Committee on Housing , Fashola said the National Housing Project which started in 2016 has been executed in 35 out of 36 states of the federation with 1,250 contractors.

The 6, 000 housing units he added, has created 46 construction sites across the country, 29, 030 direct employment and 57, 874 indirect employment.

“The National Housing Project is very much on course but the problems of paucity of fund through drastic budget slash and outstanding liabilities of N191.75 billion, need to be urgently looked into.

“In 2022 fiscal year, while the total capital votes for both Works and Housing Components of the Ministry was N441.18billion, the proposal made for 2023 fiscal year is N146billion.

“Out of the proposed N146billion as capital expenditure for the entire Ministry in 2023 fiscal year, only N45billion is earmarked for Housing sector,” he said .

Making similar submissions to the Senate Committee on Works, the Minister said: “The main challenge to highways development in the country remains inadequate funding.

“As at date , government is committed to highway contractors to the tune of about N10.4trillion while a total of about N765billion are unpaid certificates for executed works.

“Secondly , the shortage of younger Engineers / Technical officers in the Ministry as a result of embargo on employment is affecting proficient project supervision at the sites.”