…Launches national cooperative house Development Scheme.
By Mashe Umaru Gwamna
The Minister of Works and Housing,
Babatunde Fashola, said Cooperative Societies are critical tools to achieving affordable housing for citizens.
Fashola made the disclosure recently at the Commissioning of 154 housing units of Wood Hill Estate under the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) Cooperative Housing Development Loan in Abuja.
He said the partnership between cooperatives, subscribers, developers, and banks was a helping to address housing deficit in the country.
Fashola said that the problem of housing deficit in the country was true but noted that the deficit was more noticeable in the urban centres than in the rural areas because of the existence of empty houses that were beyond the purse of those that need them.
“Those empty houses speak eloquently to the problem that Federal Mortgage Bank and the cooperative societies, the question of affordability.
“In most instances you find that the empty houses are eithertoo big or too small, too expensive to meet or a combination of both the wallet of the of the off-taker.
“But today because of our strategic partnership with cooperatives and the federal mortgage bank the Buhari government is addressing the question of affordability.
“Therefore cooperatives have become a very critical tool to address this problem. Cooperatives have worked in many other sectors of our national life.
“They have worked in agric, transportation, they have worked in the business sector and we thought as a policy it something that we must now engage,’’ Fashola said.
Fashola used the occasion to also launch the National Cooperative House Development Scheme.
He said the idea was for people to acquire their own lands, organise themselves into registered cooperatives get titles of the land from their state government so that no successive government would destroy their houses with the excuse of been a slum.
“Once this is done go to any federal mortgage bank in any of the 36 states of the federation and you are sure to get a loan.
“We would be using the energy of cooperatives as voluntary societies to help people build what they want, what they can afford and what they can sustain.’’
The Chairman, Board of Directors FMBN ,Dr. Adewale Adeeyo, in his remark said the bank was intensifying the National Housing Fund (NHF) membership drive through cooperative societies to reach out to Nigerians in the non-salaries, informal sector who constitute the greater percentage of citizens.
He also urged cooperative societies to mobilise their members to register as contributors to the NHF scheme which could open opportunities to owning their own houses.
Adeeyo reassured the bank commitment to sustaining all efforts to ensure FMBN retains its enviable position as the foremost mortagage institution in Nigeria
Speaking also at the commissioning, the Managing Director FMBN, Ahmed Dangiwa on his part said the ceremony was an affirmation that NHF scheme was meeting its mandate of delivering houses that were well-built, decent and affordable to Nigerians, especially medium-and low-income workers.
“FMBN was encouraged to revamp its cooperative housing development loan that advances construction loans to housing cooperatives.
“This Estate is that first cooperative estate that will be commissioned by FMBN out of many that are nearing completion.
“I appreciate the confidence of Akacare Multipurpose cooperative society reposed in FMBN, you have given us the opportunity to once again prove that the NHFS scheme is a reality and is working.’’ Dangiwa said
Peoples Daily reports that the project was a collaborative effort between Akacare Multi-Purpose Cooperative Society and M/s Perfect Estate Developers.
Also, the project is in two phases with a total of 154 units comprising of 80 units of 2 bedrooms semi-detached bungalows and 74 units of 3 bedroom detached bungalows with phase 1 fully completed with 40 units of 2 bedrooms semidetached bungalows and 37 units of 3 bedrooms semi detached bungalows at N7,500,000 and N9,500,000 respectively.