The 9th Abuja Housing Show has opened in Abuja with the theme: “Delivery of Affordable Housing: Financing, Building Technology and Land issues in Nigeria” with stakeholders drumming support for affordable housing delivery to Nigerians.
Speaking at the occasion, the Vice-President, Prof Yemi Osinbajo said that issues of land acquisition and funding were germane to affordable housing and urged participants to map out strategies for better funding. He noted that the huge interest rates charged by financial institutions was poising a major challenge to private developers and urged participants to come up with strategies to reduce the interest rates to the barest minimum.
The Vice- President, who was represented by Senator Osita Izunaso, also said the present administration was determined to deliver basic needs to Nigerians including Housing needs as it promised during the campaigns and warned government agencies who may have turned themselves to private developers to desist from the trend, as the era of change has come.
The Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development, Mr George Ossi said the theme for this year’s housing show “is very apt, as it reflects the very critical and relevant issues that must be addressed to pave way for the housing revolution which is envisaged to take place in the country in the coming years, under the present dispensation”. He said the housing sector is crucial to the overall rapid development of the nation and that there is the need for appropriate policies and strategies to be developed and implemented by government at all level.
He disclosed that the Ministry has put in place necessary machinery to jump-start a housing revolution through the development of appropriate policies and frameworks including the National Housing and Urban Development Policies, the Housing Component of the National Integrated infrastructure Master Plan (NIMP) and the Building Code. Others include: the National Land Policy, Roadmap for the Housing and Urban Development Sector, Land Administration and Management Reforms, adding that the Ministry also supported the establishment of the Nigeria Mortgage Refinance Company(NMRC) launched last year as an innovative, transformational and strategic step towards scaling-up mortgage penetration, access to affordable mass housing and increased home ownership in the country.
He expressed optimism that the conference will discuss on-going initiatives and assess emerging challenges and opportunities that will enhance the growth of the sector as well as proffer workable strategies and new solutions for addressing the key challenges of the housing sector in the country.
Speakers at the 3-day conference include; the Managing Director, Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN), Alhaji Gimba Yau Kumo, MD, Nigeria Mortgage Refinance Company (NMRC), Prof. Charles Inyangette, Directors in the Ministry and various stakeholders from the Housing sector.
Eno Olotu (Mrs)
For: Director (Press)