12 states offer to partner FG on housing development
Twelve of the 36 states of the federation have offered to key into the Federal Government’s plan housing model for low- and middle-income earners, Babatunde Fashola, minister of works, power and housing, has disclosed.
Fashola said this at the 35th annual general meeting (AGM) of Shelter Afrique and housing symposium, Tuesday, in Abuja, saying the states had offered lands for this purpose and the federal team was planning inspection tour of the sites.
The minister did not, however, mention the states involved, but said the schemes were targeted at low profile persons, which form the bulk of the people in need of housing in the country.
Although he acknowledged the existence of housing policies over the years, but pointed out, however, that plans to execute the policies had been lacking, thus the policies so far had achieved little or nothing in housing delivery.
“Over the years, Nigeria has embarked on a series of housing initiatives, but not one of them has been pursued with consistency or any measurable sustainability. I have received some communication advising us not to re-invent the wheel because of the previous work that has been done.
“I acknowledge that there is, for example, a national housing policy of 2012. Some have chosen to call it a plan. To the extent that it is a broad statement of intent about providing housing, it is a policy statement.
“In the Ministry of Power, Works And Housing, we are convinced that these unsustainable efforts must change, and give way to a sustainable and well thought out initiative,” he said.
According to Fashola, a plan that is measurable is needed to drive housing delivery in the country and his ministry is currently developing the plan, which requires a clear understanding of who houses should be provided for.
“Our plan requires us to conduct a survey of these people to determine what they expect and what they can pay. Our plan requires us to evolve agreeable housing types, between two to four designs that have a broad, national cultural acceptance.
“Our plan requires us to standardise these designs so that we can then design moulds to accelerate the number that can be built. Our plan requires us to standardise the size of our doors, windows, our toilet and bath fittings, our lighting fittings and other accessories so that our small and medium enterprises can respond to supply all the building materials, create diversification and jobs, and ensure that projects are completed with a steady supply of materials,” he said.
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