A vibrant housing market will boost Nigeria’s economy and people’s livelihoods – Osinbajo – Channels Television
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo (SAN) said that to address the problem of inadequate housing in the country, the Buhari administration remains steadfast in its vision to build a nation where low-income people have the dignity of a home and decent livelihoods.
According to Professor Osinbajo, this will not only improve the quality of life for Nigerians but will also boost the economy through a vibrant housing market.
The Vice President said Friday in Masaka, Nasarawa State, during the commissioning of 248 housing units and the commemoration of the 1,000th house built by the Millard Fuller Foundation, MFF.
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Describing the commissioning as “a watershed event in the important work of providing housing to Nigerians who need it most”, the Vice President said that “while the challenge of inadequate or non-existent housing undermines the quality of lives of many low-income Nigerians, it also robs our economy, and therefore our collective well-being, of the growth possible through a buoyant housing market.
The Vice President stressed that the Buhari administration takes challenges seriously in addressing concerns.
The most recent initiative in this regard is the N200 billion National Public Housing Scheme under the N2.3 trillion Economic Sustainability Plan (ESP), which aims to provide housing to low-income Nigerians. income, as well as creating jobs for local industry.
According to Professor Osinbajo, to ensure that these initiatives are supported, the federal government is in the final stages of drafting a comprehensive 10-year national housing strategy. The strategy is the first of its kind with input from private and public sector actors.
The VP revealed that under the ESP Social Housing program, which will create up to 300,000 homes, 18 states have so far donated land for free, while 19,478 homes have been built, including 582 purchased from the Millard Fuller Foundation.
“We are negotiating another 400 houses with them,” said Professor Osinbajo, adding that “the one-bedroom unit costs 2 million naira and 3.2 million naira for the two bedrooms. We negotiated with Dangote, BUA and Lafarge to donate cement to the Family Homes Fund at 30% off. So now we have low cost cement.
Pointing to the Millard Fuller Foundation housing units in Nasarawa State as an example of the private sector partnering with the government to reduce the public housing supply deficit, the Vice President hoped that “it can serve a role model for many others to follow, with the potential to create affordable housing for low-income Nigerians, especially our young people just starting out in life.
The Vice President, who was received in Masaka, Nasarawa State, by Governor Abdullahi Sule, then inspected the affordable housing built by the foundation.
Speaking at the event, Governor Sule thanked the Vice President for finding the time to commission the accommodations and “sharing the joy of the beneficiaries, especially those of the Fuller Foundation”, describing the gesture as a demonstration of the Vice President’s care for the people.
The Governor also commended the federal government’s efforts to find solutions to the affordable housing challenge and assured the state government’s commitment to repairing the access road to the subdivision.
Earlier, Mr. Sam Odia, the National Director of the Millard Fuller Foundation expressed his gratitude for the presence of the Vice President for Housing Commissioning. He described the vice president as a “man of his word and a man with a heart for the poor.”
He added that the foundation is working with the Family Homes Fund to advance the cause of social housing in Nigeria.
Also present at the event were the Managing Director of the Family Homes Fund, Mr. Femi Adewole; the Principal Special Assistant to the President for Infrastructure, Ms. Imeh Okon; state and Karu Local Government Council officials; Etsu Karu, HRH Luka Panya-Baba; and representatives of project partners, among others.
The Millard Fuller Foundation was founded in 2006 and works on more inclusive housing for low-income Nigerians. The Foundation is supported by the Fuller Center for Housing Inc., USA, Selavip International, Belgium, Family Homes Funds Ltd and the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH (GIZ). The federal government’s N-Power program also partners with MFF “as the official center for construction skills training.”