Lagos State Commissioner for Housing, Prince Gbolahan Lawal has disclosed that the current policy of the State Government is to embark on construction of mass housing project through direct and Public Private Partnership in order to reduce the deficit in the housing sector.
Speaking at the Bagauda Kaltho Press Centre, Alausa Ikeja, during the 2016 annual Ministerial Press Briefing of the State Government,the Commissioner stated that government has designed clear steps to quickly bridge demand and supply gap in the sector through a new initiative known as Rent-to-Own policy which would soon come into effect, adding that government has a plan to build 50 units of houses in every Local Government Area in the State.
Lawal maintained that many Lagosians would be favoured under such scheme as they would only be required to pay five per cent of the value of the housing unit as commitment fee and spread remaining payment over 10 years at six percent interest rate.
He identified high cost of building materials, non-deployment of new technology, shortage of skilled labour and artisans and problems caused by unscrupulous estate agents, landlords and land owners (omo-oniles) as major problems confronting housing sector in Lagos State.
Lawal however gave assurance that the present administration is determined to protect the interest of Lagosians in regards to real estate transactions by ensuring that all stakeholders in the industry comply with Lagos State Tenancy Law, Criminal Law and other legislations on landed property and transactions.
Speaking on the new policy “Master Craftsmen Project” of the government, Lawal said the initiative is intended to redress the dearth of skilled workers in the building industry such as masons, carpenters, steel fabricators, plumbers, electricians, tillers and the likes.
He said because it appears that the Nigerian Housing and Construction Industry is becoming more and more dependent on foreigners to fill the skill gap, the “Lagos State Master Craftsmen Project” is being introduced as government intervention in collaboration with relevant Professional Bodies like Nigerian Institute of Builders (NIOB).
The Commissioner equally noted that about 4,000 craftsmen are to be trained over a period of four years with the government ready to provide them with basic tools and equipment after completion.