MORE than 1,500 housing units for defence personnel under construction in Lusaka West are expected to be commissioned in January next year.
The houses are part of the 2,830 that are under construction by a Chinese firm, Sinomach, at Zambia Army L 85 camp site in Lusaka West.
Speaking when he toured the project yesterday Defence Minister Geoffrey Mwamba, who was accompanied by his Permanent Secretary Rose Salukatula, said 1,554 units would be commissioned in January next year.
Mr Mwamba was impressed with the pace at which the works were being carried out.
He was happy that the project had reached an advanced stage.
"This is good for us as Government because it will save us a lot of funds once these units are complete, so as Government, we can't wait to see our defence personnel move into these houses," he said.
He said once completed, the project would address the issue of accommodation among the defence forces.
Mr Mwamba said the shortage of accommodation had persisted for a long time and that the housing construction project had, therefore, excited the defence personnel.
He said the project which extended to Chindwin Barracks in Kabwe, Tungap Barracks in Mufulira, Twin Palm Makeni and Office of the President Special Duties in Lusaka would house 4,527 defence personnel once completed.
And speaking through an interpreter Sinomach vice-president Qu Qingzhu said 1,554 houses would be handed over in January next year .
The second phase of 377 units was expected to be completed in May 2013 while the final 899 units would be handed over in August the same year.