Owing to the lack of accurate data on housing in Nigeria, that can help policy-makers address problems in the sector, the Federal Housing Authority (FHA) has announced plans to work with other agencies on the development of a national housing profile for the country.
The Guardian reports that the impressive growth in the housing sector, little had been done to collect adequate data on the growth and challenges in the sector. Developers and investors are at loss on how to identify the appropriate areas where there is a need for housing or even pieces of land that we can buy for development.
In most cases, data collected around the country often fails to reflect the key areas with housing problems as it only dwells on a broad and general analysis of the problems.
In a meeting with United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN–Habitat), the Managing Director, Professor Mohammed Al- Amin confirmed that the authority was embarking on the project because of the unreliable nature of the available housing statistics in the country, The Guardian reports.
He told UN-HABITAT Programme Officer, Mr. Kabir Yari, that although an attempt was made to incorporate a housing census into the 2006 national headcount, the data obtained from the exercise was unreliable.
That failure, he said was due to the defective nature of the tool designed for it as enumerators were only trained on how to capture data on individuals and not housing units.
He noted that the lack of reliable housing data had hamstrung proper planning and called for concerted efforts to address the situation.
The FHA chief executive expressed doubt about the authenticity of the famous 17 million housing deficit for Nigeria being often referred to in various quarters because no scientific basis has been shown for it.
He said the authority was in touch with the National Population Commission (NPC), which he said had indicated that it would embark on a proper housing count during the next population census. He, therefore, urged the UN-HABITAT to make its expertise available to ensure the success of the exercise.
Al-Amin also told his host that the Authority wished to participate in the implementation of the resolutions of the just concluded Habitat III, the United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Development held in Quito, Ecuador. Expressing regret that Nigeria had not been taking full advantage of platforms opened to it by international organisations, he said FHA was poised to participate in the follow-up activities to Habitat III at the national, sub-regional and regional levels.
Source: The Guardian