Nine slum communities in Lagos state are to benefit from a $200 million development initiative financed by a loan from the World Bank. The Lagos Metropolitan Development and Governance Project involves building or upgrading schools, hospitals, markets and other facilities in the informal settlements of Agege, Ajegunle, Amukoko, Badia, Iwaya, Makoko, Ilaje, Bariga and Ijeshatedo/Itire. The programme also includes rehabilitating nearly 45 km of roads, sinking over 50 boreholes and laying new water pipes, while fishing communities on the lagoon will get new fish smoking facilities and cold rooms for storage as well as bridges and walkways. The project is expected to benefit one million people out of a total state population of around 17 million according to the 2006 census. The number of Lagos residents is growing at a rate well above the national and global average as people leave rural areas in search of jobs. Most of the new arrivals end up living in unplanned settlements without adequate services or infrastructure and where poverty and disease are rife.
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