Distinguish Senator Barehu Olugbenga Ashafa is the Managing Director, Chief Executive officer of Federal Housing Authority FHA, an agency charged with provision of affordable houses to both the civil servants, middle class and ordinary Nigerians.
Ashafa had served the country diligently to the best of his ability in many positions both at the cosmopolitan Lagos state and by extension at the national level in his current capacity.
Untill his current appointment, he has also served at the top echelon of Nigeria’s lawmaking body, as Senator who represented Lagos East in the 8th Senate/National Assembly.
From his background as a retired civil servant in Lagos state who rose to the highest ladder in the civil service as Permanent Secretary in the Land Ministry, his appointment by in August 2020 by the former administration of President Muhammadu Buhari was a round peg in a round hole, given his resume, capacity and achievements in the public service of the highly populated city in Africa continent as an administrator and politician.
Having met a decapitated and despirited staffers at the heat of global pandemic of COVID-19 in FHA, Senator Ashafa swung into action and drew out an action plan that is part of the success story of the Federal Housing Authority FHA, the main agency that not only provides affordable housing, but unites the country through its activities.
About three years down the line, aside staff orientation and reorientation, enabling working environment, he had provided more housing through many laudable initiatives, programs and policies that had returned the agency to it’s lost glory.
His reform policies which is all encompassing included but not limited to his giant strides that had transformed the agency to it’s original mandate, not only provides houses for both the low, middle and high class Nigerians , but oriented the populace the need for higher patronage.
Senator Gbenga Ashafa who pursued vigorously the scourge of Land grabbing, his policy of Land reclamation from illegal occupants across the country, particularly the high brow Lagos, Abuja, Kano , Portharcourt among many other states of it’s Land.
Penultimate, both Lands and assets of the agency had been exposed to shylock Land agents and developers in Nigeria, that had took opportunities of the weak successive administration’s to annexed government properties, through illegal means of land grabbing, and had warned on several occasions, that those perpetrating the illegal actions will not get away with it.
He recovered many assets of the agency from notable Nigerians, religious houses among many other corrupt Land agents who have gone to an extent of forgery to acquire the sparse Lands belonging to FHA illegally.
This was done through public notices, demolitions, acquisitions and Legal actions to address the growing scourge and the easiest way for corrupt Nigerians to acquire government properties, against the lay down procedures.
This was further achieved through the application of technology in both Land management and allocations, as Lands belonging to the agency are been allocated using online platforms, rather than the previous analogue system been deployed.
Allocations of Lands in the Federal Housing Authority FHA had undergone reforms and digitalised, as the agency had provided one stop shop to trace and retrace it’s allocations both to partners, agencies and Nigerians.
Having achieved much through concerted efforts, the statutory functions of providing affordable housing to Nigerians was rejigged with the completion of many ongoing housing projects across the country, and embarking on construction of new ones as well as opening up more construction sites.
It recently commissioned the Zuba FHA estate in Abuja and constructing another one in Bwari due for completion in few months and across the country, with the south west, south east and other geopolitical zones not left out.
Senator Ashafa in his strides has acquired a sparse land to build a smart city for thr nation’s city , while it will embark on the construction of the popular phase 11 Federal Housing Authority FHA estate in it’s Lugbe extension area of Abuja, before the end of the third quarter of the year , 2023 and across the states.
The completed and commissioned Zuba FHA estate made provisions for “Rent to Own ” for ordinary Nigerians, who are either peasant farmers, traders, low income earners, and artisans, a new area to facilitate the downtrodden in the society to own their houses in the choicest areas of the country.
He also embarked on massive reconstruction of roads in the FHA estates across the country, to forestall the sufferings of the occupants of government estates and relieved them of untold hardship plying the roads.
The exercise which is in phases will be a continuous one pending when all the roads in it’s estates are brought back to it’s original state.
With the employment of new hands inspite COVID-19 and promotion of staffs of the agency after many decades, the highly spirited and job security provided by the FHA had encouraged hardwork, diligence and commitment to duty by the workers of the agency with provision and procurement of new working tools and equipment.
While celebrating his 68th birthday today, the 22nd of July, 2023, he holds his head high to have achieved greatly and still counting in both the public service, political class and administration.
As you mark your birthday, we pray that Almighty God will continue to provide the opportunity to impact greatly on your fatherland.
Congratulations Distinguished Senator Gbenga Ashafa and Happy Birthday sir.
Written By ABUBAKAR YUSUF with email address [email protected].