The Centre for Social Justice, Equity and Transparency and 13 other civil
society organisations (CSOs) have commended President Muhammadu Buhari’s on his decision to continue the Abuja Centenary City Project.
The $18.5 billion project was initiated by former President Goodluck Jonathan to commemorate Nigeria’s 100 years of existence.
Comrade Isaac Ikpa, Executive Coordinator of the Centre for Social Justice, Equity and Transparency, who briefed the media on behalf of the other groups, on Sunday in Abuja, said the move is a clear testimony to the readiness of the president not to abandon any project from previous government that has direct impact on the citizenry.
According to him, we are particularly pleased at Mr President’s endorsement of this project which is projected to create about 250,000 more direct jobs in the Federal Capital Territory and about half a million indirect jobs.
“This potential to create thousands of direct and indirect jobs for our teeming youths has
always made this project of interest to us. We appeal that he looks dispassionately and critically into
other inherited programmes of the past administration with a view to
further expanding those that will create additional employment for youths,” he added.
He noted that the openness with which the board of Centenary City Plc led
by its Chairman and former Head of State, General Abdulsalami Abubakar,
discussed the project with the president has nipped in the bud the
controversy surrounding the ownership of the project, which many thought belongs to an individual.
“Now that the controversy has been laid to rest, Nigerians can now begin to look forward to the gains of the investment by development partners from the United Arab Emirates in the $18.5 project. This will greatly help reboot the economy.
“The government of President Buhari should not be reduced into a tool for
fighting a vendetta as the distractions caused to the Centenary City
project has now been proven to be such. People who have scores to settle
within their circles should do so without trying to compromise viable national projects that were designed to improve the lot of citizens,” Ikpa said.