Festac Town stakeholders including Federal Housing Authority (FHA) which is an agency of the Federal Government, Lagos State government, Amuwo Odofin Local Government Area, and the Festac Town Residents Association (FTRA) have decried the decay in the festival town that has robbed it of its former glory.
The stakeholders noted that there have been significant abuses in the usage of facilities and wanton conversion of residential property to commercial purposes in the town, adding that they have also noticed total disregard for rules and regulations accented to at the time of allotting houses to residents.
At a meeting in Amuwo Odofin attended by Ama Pepple, the minister of lands, housing and urban development; Tever Gemade, the managing director of FHA, Lagos State government officials, Amuwo Odofin LG chairman, and Festac residents, the stakeholders resolved to restore the town’s lost glory, setting up two committees to jump-start the restoration process.
The two committees tagged ‘Task Force Committee on Illegal Structures’ and Committee on Ground Rents and Rates’ comprised five members each selected by the various interest groups.
The task force committee chaired by Lagos State commissioner for physical planning & urban development, Olutoyin Ayinde, is to ensure the removal of all illegal structures in the estate and restore all open spaces and parks.
The committee on ground rents and rates chaired by the special adviser to Governor Babatunde Fashola of Lagos State on taxation and revenue, Bola Shodipo, is to look into non-payment of rents and rates by Festac residents as alleged by FHA.
The committee is to adopt a strategy for the collection of this money, believing that without money, the restoration project would not be feasible.