Vanguard (Lagos)

25 August 2012

Nigeria: 71 Staff of VON Become Abuja Landlords

My name is Chinyere Asare. I am one of the 71 winners of Voice of Nigeria (VON), housing raffle draw. "I won in the senior category.

I have never believed in the issue of try your luck thing, I have always believed in either you get it or you don't but I said let me go ahead all the same and somehow I decided to go ahead.

"It is a dream come true because everybody wants to become a landlord. And since Voice of Nigeria (VON) is making it easy for us, we hope we can really have the requirements to possess our possession. "I thank the management for going out of their way to organise the raffle.

At a point I felt they were overdoing it by going to get transparent ballot box. And I said, ' is it not to pick the raffle draws?' but they did all these because they know what human beings can be like. But I thank God they went to this extent because nobody can complain".

These were the words of one of the winners of VON Staff Housing Estate draw at the venue, Lugbe along the Nnamdi Azikiwe Airport Road, Abuja.

Those that won were full of appreciation and thanks to God for a dream come true. They equally expressed their profound appreciation to the management of VON for the initiative to assist the staff own their houses in the federal capital.

The process started about four months ago when the Vice President, Arch. Namadi Sambo, did the ground breaking ceremony.

The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Information, Mr. Aliyu Salihu Gusau, who picked all the draws and was present throughout the raffle draw, congratulated those who were successful, as he said that the initiative will alleviate the problem of housing among the staff of the organisation."It shows the commitment of the Director General (DG), Malam Abubakar Jijiwa, and board towards the welfare of their staff", Gusau said.

"It ensures the moral of staff is taken care of because in any organisation the moral of the staff is very important once the staffs are happy, they are motivated to work harder and this what has happened."

"The process that the ballot took place was open and transparent and even those who didn't win the houses are going home satisfied because the process was transparent.

And they are sure that, in accordance with the promise of the DG, this is going to be a continuous process," he said.

While speaking to journalists after the balloting exercise, the DG of VON noted, "This is an arrangement of public private partnership.

The private developers and the organisation already have a land and based on the value of the land, we were able to share the equity between VON and the private developer. "The potion that comes to VON is the one we are sharing out among our staff.

We have 82 units of houses and out of these the management has been able to select 12 for special quarters. And the remaining is what we are balloting today."

The VON boss said 135 members of staff applied and in the first phase 71 of them were allocated housing units.

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