This might seem boring but this is an article you just have to read as it informs you about how Festac Town came about.
In 1977 there was a huge festival hosted in Nigeria, this was the Second world Black and African Festival of Arts and Culture (FESTAC) which is where the name was culled from. This festival was bigger than the First festival which held in Dakar , Senegal as most of the African countries as at 1977 had gained independence from colonial control.
This huge Housing estate was initially built to accommodate participants of this festival. Festac town was originally named Festival Town till the name FESTAC was known.
This festival was initially meant to be held in 1975 during the regime of General Yakubu Gowon but due to political instability, this festival was postponed till 1977 during General Olusegun Obasanjo’s Regime.
Before this festival, it is said that a very large expanse of land which was mostly swamp was them acquired in Lagos state under Decree 40 of 1973 to construct a massive estate which was then re-planned to suit the housing needs for this world festival.
This estate as at 1977 consisted of about 5,000 accommodation units, 7 major distinct avenues. This town was prepared to accommodate about visitors as well as any Nigerian employees and officers working at the Festival.
Festival Town was intended to evoke modern age, state of the art and there was promise of state-sponsored economic development fuelled by oil revenues.
A lot of money and resources was invested into the development and building of Festac Town, which included state of the art electrical generators, police and fire stations, access to public transportation, supermarkets, banks, health centres, public restrooms, and postal services etc.
At the conclusion of this festival, the federal Government of Nigeria then allocated the accommodation, housing units and landed properties out. This was done by organising a ballot process which then chose eventual winners. This ballot was conducted under the supervision of Mr S. P. O. Fortune Ebie, first General Manager of the Federal Housing Authority, FHA, and administrator of Festac from 1976 to 1983.
This is the very interesting part. The forms that were sold for the ballot was in categories of N2, N3, N5, and N10. At the end, houses were allocated to winners, on owner-occupier basis, according to the categories as well as people’s level of income at the time.
Till now claim is being made to this housing estate by the Federal, State and Local Government. This makes present residents to be issued charges ranging from valuation fees, Local Government levies to tenement rates.
So i hope you enjoyed this post and now well – informed about FESTAC TOWN
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