By Rita Esegine
The construction company in charge of the national office complex of the National Directorate of Employment (NDE), has expressed concern that none availability of required funds may delay the finishing of the agency’s long awaited headquarters building.
Mr Emma Azoro, the head engineer for Scadon Construction Company who is in charge of the NDE headquarters building, told newsmen last week in Abuja that the his construction firm, has put in place the required mechanical, technological and manpower needed to finish the all important operational headquarters of the job creation agency.
His words, “Scadon Nigeria Limited is the company constructing the National Directorate of Employment headquarters building. The building is a 7 floor building with a ground floor, a basement and a paint floor.
Generally, we have about 140 offices in the building. We have a clinic, storages and training halls. We also have partitionable spaces. Although the offices have been designed the way they are in the drawing by the architect, they can also be reassigned.
“We have a an architectural design drawing, mechanical electrical design drawing but in every construction project, there’s usually changes and at the end of the day we come up with what we call as built drawing which will also be used in future for maintenance purpose.
“We actually commenced the building in the month of November 2021 and we hope to complete it in the next six months or less than that provided the required funds made available without delay. And we are now on our own part will not delay in deploying the right missionaries, manpower and workforce to get it done.
“Funds are the important factor in determining the finishing the building on time. It is left for government to determine whether the project is important to them and then make provision for funds to enable us finish the building quickly.”
Recall that NDE national headquarters has been carrying its operations in a rented building where it pays millions yearly.
Earlier, the Minister of Labour and Employment for State, Mr Festus Keyamo SAN, who was conducted round the building on his working inspection to ascertain the level of progress on the construction of the building, praised President Muhammandu Buhari, for his love and interest towards ensuring that NDE own a benefitting office complex to enable it carry out its statutory duties productively.
The Minister, further stressed the importance of NDE in the fight against the menace of unemployment. He also said that NDE deserves to own a befitting building that will enable it carry out its job creation operations.
“First, we thank Mr. president for acceding to our request. A functional building for NDE was one of the first I pursued as minister..that we needed a permanent site. Where we are now in Zone 1, Nouakchott Street has actually been a rented apartment for so many years and we pay so much every year as rent there.
“So we actually pursued this and graciously Mr. president granted us the commission to take over this building and handed it over to us as our permanent site. Am sure you see how very very impressive the building is even in an unfinished state its very impressive building. It shows the love the president has for this agency and the support the president has given to this agency so we thank Mr. president.
“The second one is to also behave like Olivia twist, we are appealing for funds, bulk funds to finish it as quickly as possible. You will notice that every year, building materials go up so much. So if we don’t finish as quickly as possible. A building that you can use N10 to finish, if you delay for 5 years, you will use another N100 to finish that building. It will be 3, 4 times the price for finishing. So the thing is to get funds out and finish it as quickly as possible.
“One, it helps us to conserve funds ultimately even though we can get or if we are getting more funds immediately, but ultimately, we preserve fund and save the funds for the federal government.
“The second one is that we also save the funds of the rent we pay every year at Nouakchott Street.
The third one is, NDE is the main employment agency. It should be realize that this building is for the star employment agency for Nigeria. We have other ones, we have other agencies into other ministries that create some pocket of jobs but NDE is the star agency by law, it is the star agency to create jobs in the country.
“Imagine people come from outside the country and they don’t see an impressive building. In fact you will see that the agency that wants to create jobs they also need to be repaired. It will not be good enough for us. So for the image of this agency, we need this building to be put in shape as quickly as possible.
“So I want to urge the engineers to be prudent to the management of funds, to be prudent because we don’t have money in this county so whatever is given to them, we beg them to use direct labour as much as possible to finish up this building as soon as possible, conserve funds to the federal government so we can move in as quickly as possible.
“I hope during my tenure as a minister we can commission this. The contractor has said if he has money, he can deliver. So its money and they are waiting for money.
“I really what Mr. president to commission this before he leaves. So that no other government should take credit except an APC government.”