HURIWA kicks against Abuja tower completion
Human Rights Writers Association of Nigeria (HURIWA) has told Minister of Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Nyesom Wike, to perish the thought of completing the Abuja Tower project.
The group, instead, urged the minister to use the humongous cash earmarked for the tower project to build low-cost houses, support Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in Abuja, and upgrade health centres and primary schools in rural communities of the FCT, which are in very bad shape.
HURIWA described the Abuja Tower as a white elephant project, which conception and implementation represent a money-guzzling machine, a cesspool of corruption for officials and their contractor friends.
National Coordinator of HURIWA, Emmanuel Onwubiko, said the FCT landscape is dotted with natural edifices, sights and sounds that, if harnessed by the FCT Administration, would be the best tourism potential, instead of frittering scarce resources to complete a project with zero economic value to the Nigerian masses.
According to him, it is even better to inject the funds into cleaning and greening the FCT, by planting more trees and flowers, restoring the original masterplan that created Green Areas and natural parks, which had been distorted by a cartel within the FCTA for their selfish commercial purposes.
The rights group told the minister that foreign tourists coming mostly from advanced societies such as United Kingdom, United States, Canada and Australia were already tired of living in their skyscrapers and gigantic buildings, even much taller than the Abuja Tower.
It doubted if any serious western tourist from would spend their hard-earned cash to come see Abuja Tower.
Onwubiko also faulted the claim that the Abuja Tower, if completed, would serve as a centre of national unity because taxpayers’ money might be diverted to private pockets through a contrived public-private sectors ownership arrangement, which would be hatched and implemented by the politicians and contractors calling the shots in the city.
Wike, after a closed-door meeting with contractors handling different projects in the FCT, recently, said the iconic Millennium Tower, which has been abandoned due to paucity of funds, would be completed in the next two years.
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