THE Nigerian Senate on Thursday says there is a need to resolve issues surrounding the housing sector in Nigeria to ensure affordable housing for the teaming poor population in the country.
The motion was moved by Akpan Bassey, senator representing Akwa Ibom North-East District, who said there was an urgent need to reform the housing policy and mortgage financing in the country to meet the escalating housing demand.
Yisa Ashiru, senator representing Kwara South district seconded the motion. He said the Federal Mortgage Bank should ensure that the interest rates are brought to a minimum and the housing issue should not be neglected.
Also speaking was Binos Yaroe, representing Adamawa South Senatorial District, he said it was imperative for the housing sector to reform so people could have houses because it was a fundamental need of man
The senate further resolved that the committee on Housing urgently works out modalities with the various National Housing Development sector to ensure the implementation of affordable housing across the country to cater for the ever-increasing population.
Since 2015, there have been programmes enacted in the housing sector; like the Federal Integrated Staff Housing (FISH) Programme (2016); and My Own Home scheme (2017).
While the FISH programme geared towards providing affordable housing for Federal Civil Servants through an integrated strategy involving group land allocation, site services, infrastructure development, etc, My Own Home Scheme, focused on the construction of about 100,000 housing units across the country for N610 billion.
However, the sector has witnessed no great change to date, as it is faced with delayed licensing requirements and a high cost of building materials due to the high import dependence of the sector among other factors.