Property developers under the aegis of Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria (REDAN) have commended the federal government for creating a new ministry for land, housing and urban development.
The developers applauded the Acting President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, for acceding to the call by stakeholders for a separate ministry to specifically address housing matters as originally provided for in the National Housing Policy, by splitting the former ministry of works, housing and urban development into two – namely: ministry ofÂ works and; ministry for land, housing and urban development.
REDAN President, Chief Olabode Afolayan, noted in a statement signed by Goke Odunlami, Secretary General of the association, that tackling issues relating to land, housing and urbanisation would be much easier with the establishment of the new ministry. He further remarked that the inclusion of land as a key component of the ministry takes due cognisance of its significance in relation to housing and urban development, and in line with the current administrationâ€™s goal of ensuring access to land.
â€œWe thank the president for attaching importance to the issue of housing as evident in the creation of the new ministry. The developers welcome this idea, and pledge their assurance for more support for the ministry. We believe that this will resolve lingering issues with land matters, which affects provision of housing delivery in the country,â€ he said.
Afolayan implored the newly appointed minister for Land, Housing and Urban development, Hon. NdueseÂ Essien, to properly assess the problem of housing provision in the country, which he noted is very challenging and requires all stakeholders to work together with a view to alleviating the despicable state the sector is currently in.
â€œWe urge the minister to continue the Private-Public Partnership initiative of the government and urge him to work with developers across the federation to make real the provision of the 400,000 housing units being processed by REDAN. Government should strengthen the capital base of the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN), which is the only secondary mortgage institution in the country.
â€œRight now, the real estate sector is undergoing serious cash crunch. Many developers have several houses for sale but no buyers for them. The avenue for developers to access overseas funds must be created to add up to the National Housing Fund and make it possible for them to reduce the housing shortage across the country,â€ he remarked.