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Stakeholders Bemoan Nigeria’s Increasing Housing Shortage

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Despite efforts to combat the country’s housing deficit, some stakeholders have said there is an increase in housing shortage, especially for poor Nigerians.
They noted that there was an acute problem of housing availability, accessibility and affordability without corresponding actions to match the demand and called for urgent collaboration among stakeholders.
The President and Chairman of Council, Association of Housing Corporations of Nigeria, Mohammed Adamu, said there had not been adequate realistic strategies that would directly address housing needs and empower the people to reduce unemployment in the Nigerian society.
He stated that mass rental housing remained an untapped viable option of sustaining housing corporations and reducing the impact of housing shortage, especially on the low-income group.
While calling on all state governments to support their housing agencies in driving rental housing across Nigeria, he said it would go a long way in reducing housing problems in the country.
Adamu said opportunities abound in the construction and housing sector, but homeownership remained the priority and major need of the people.
“What have we done with these opportunities? We talk about high demand for housing without corresponding supply, yet we have houses developed in some of our major cities like Abuja, Lagos and Port Harcourt built over two years that are not sold,” he said.
He added, “We talk about inadequate housing finance to build, yet we have some idle funds in the system that are quietly kept and placed in fixed deposit and Treasury bills, generating selfish income to the pocket of some privileged few.
“We complain of high cost of building materials, yet every policy put in place to encourage and sustain vibrant local building materials production are not supported with appropriate enabling environment to produce quality building materials. Why is our mortgage market crawling when we have a vibrant platform that can create unhindered access to affordable mortgage as well as exit point for developers who invested in housing?”
He stated that all manner of opportunities in the sector had been identified but had not been tapped; adding that stakeholders needed to ensure that opportunities were properly tapped, to address the country’s housing problems.
“It is time to work together as stakeholders to holistically tackle our housing problems. Housing sector has potential that can be tapped for driving our economic recovery if only we choose to get our act together to tackle housing deficit and affordability challenge.  It is time to deviate from just talking without matching it with action,” he said.
The President, Assured Group, Mr Adewumi Okupe, said the cooperative option of housing provision had not been fully explored.
According to him, cooperatives allow for resources to be pulled together from various members who have come into the unit for the purposes of realising their objective, which may be homeownership.
He explained that attempts had been made over the years to raise money through conventional means, but no suitable one could be found.
“Through the cooperative option, members are able to increase wealth and create long-term lending options through their funds at very low interest rate,” he said.
Adamu said despite efforts by investors in the private sector, the government should also increase investment in housing, especially in providing primary infrastructure.
“Against the background that primary infrastructure forms about 30 per cent of construction cost in housing estates, the road to housing availability and affordability cannot be achieved without the support of the government,” he added.

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Housing/Property

Edo Moves To Provide Land For Oil Palm Investors

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Edo State Governor, Mr Godwin Obaseki, says the state government has concluded plans to open up about 100, 000 hectares of new land for oil palm investors in the state.
Obaseki made this known during the 2019 Alaghodaro Youth Summit held in Benin to mark his third year in office.
He said: “From next month, we will make available 100,000 hectares of new land for oil palm production to investors.
“Indonesia earns more from oil palm production than crude oil. We are going to make Edo the palm oil hub of Nigeria.
“If we are to be able to cultivate 100,000 hectares of oil palm, we will need a minimum of two or three people to cultivate one hectare of oil palm.
“We will have created about 300,000 jobs from oil palm production alone.”
The governor said that his administration was mapping out the state’s economy and looking at the future through its 30-year development plan to know what to spend money on.
“Our Ossiomo independent power supply would soon be available in the state.
“I cannot guarantee that you will have it in your homes, but I can assure you that you will have it to power the street lights, production centres, offices and business centres in the state.”
Obaseki disclosed that he had created 157,000 jobs in the last three years.
According to him, 45,000 jobs were created through job tracking for organisations, 23,000 through Edo Innovation Programme, 1,300 through food and agriculture, and 16,000 through Edo Production Centre.
The governor added that 12,000 other jobs were created through the National Social Investment Programme, 10,000 through the ministry of wealth creation, and 32,000 from indirect jobs.

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Housing/Property

Climate Change: Experts Demand More Green Buildings

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A lecturer in the Department of Quantity Surveying, Federal University of Technology Akure (FUTA), Mrs Olubunmi Ade-Ojo, has called on government at all levels to be proactive about advocacy for green building, as part of measures to control climate change.
Ade-Ojo made this call on the sidelines of the commemoration of the 2019 70th anniversary of the Nigerian Institute of Town Planners in Akure, yesterday.
She observed that people often believed that the maintenance of a green building was expensive and risky due to infestation of reptiles.
The lecturer explained that the land on which people built their houses and used for other activities was gradually reducing on a daily basis.
She, therefore, called on government to formulate policies that would prevent wastage in the society.
Ade-Ojo, also, admonished policy makers across the country to know the importance of the roles of town planners in Nigeria.
He implored state governments across the country,  to embark on a massive campaign to sensitise the people on the need to always consult the Ministry of Physical Planing before erecting building structures.
Also, the Chairman, Nigerian Institute of Town Planner, Ondo State chapter, Mr Omole Kayode, stressed the need for people to recognise the importance of tree planting in their environment, which, he said, could prevent untimely death in the society.
He observed that the environment was now being compressed due to increase in population and buildings among other things.
Omole stressed that the occasion was to educate the public on the danger of climate change and how to proffer lasting solution to it.

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College Begins Construction Of N310m Auditorium

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The College of Insurance and Financial Management (CIFM), Lagos-Ibadan Expressway yesterday held the Sod Turning Ceremony of its proposed N310 million auditorium to boost infrastructure development.
President, Chartered Insurance Institute of Nigeria (CIIN), Mr Eddie Efekoha, at the ceremony, handed over the project to Acropolis Contractors for completion within the next 12 months.
Efekoha said that the institute would continue to invest in manpower development which is its core mandate to upgrade insurance practice and industry in Nigeria to meet up with global standard.
He urged the contractors to cooperate with the college during the course of the construction, to ensure timely completion of the project.
In his address, Chairman , Governing Council, CIFM, Mr Muftau Oyegunle, said that the college had continued to make tremendous progress in terms of infrastructure development.
“Academically, we are forging ahead, and in terms of infrastructural development, we have continued to make progress,” he said.
Oyegunle commended the CIIN President for carrying out the project during his tenure and also investing in the college.
Rector, CIFM, Mrs Yeside Oyetayo, told newsmen on the sideline of the event that the college was depending on a grant from the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM) and support from other sponsors to fund the project.
Oyetayo said that the 1,650-capacity auditorium was expected to be delivered in the next 12 months.
“The estimate amount for the project is about N310 million with consultancy fee and we expect that it will be delivered in 12 months.
“For now, we are relying on NAICOM grant to fund the project, while expecting that other sponsors would also come up to assist,” she said.
CIFM is a full-fledged college set up by CIIN to undertake its training function.
The College provides in-depth training in insurance, financial management, marketing and other related fields.

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