Mr. Gimba Kumo, Managing Director, Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN), said 17 to 20 million housing units were needed to address the housing deficit in the country.
Kumo said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Thursday in Abuja. He also listed ways of addressing the housing deficit in the country.
“We are all aware that the housing gap is very big, 17 to 20 million units needed to address the housing needs of Nigerians.
“Apart from that, we also believe that even some Nigerians that have houses, they deserve more than that to have shelter over their heads.
“We are at the moment trying to focus on an intervention to address the issue of NHF contributors that have been displaced by the insurgency in the three states of the north east – Borno, Yobe and Adamawa states.
“We would, first of all, try to give them the FMBN Home Renovation Loan (FHRL) for those that have houses to quickly see how they can renovate and get back to their houses that have been destroyed.
“That’s (they are) those contributing to the National Housing Fund (NHF) scheme.‘’
Kumo said that for the housing needs to be addressed, there must be provision of mortgages, and construction finance for the houses to be built.
He said it could be addressed through the provision of FHRL scheme to enable existing house owners to upgrade their houses.
He said it could also be addressed through the introduction of Diaspora Mortgage Programme for Nigerians living abroad that needed to have houses in their own home country.
Kumo further explained that the housing deficit could also be addressed through the engagement of the various cooperatives across the country, to enable Nigerians who were not in the formal sector of the economy to also own their houses.
“Secondly, those who don’t have houses, we can see what we can do in trying to build affordable houses on sustainable paces.
“We have lined up a lot of activities; these activities need a lot of fund, hard work, they need dedication, they need support of all Nigerians particularly the media houses so that the public can be sensitised to be able to come under our platform.”
Kumo said that the new housing initiatives would be extended down to the 774 local government areas in the country.READ ALSO – Central Bank of Nigeria to assist flood victims in Kebbi
“We started a programme with Association of Local Government of Nigeria (ALGON) but you will also realise that most of the employees don’t have capacity to go through the mortgage processes.
“Their income will not be able to service the mortgages. What we are trying to do now is to build houses depending on the needs, location, culture and environmental issues.
“We will resume discussions with ALGON to see how we can come up with houses that can go round the 774 LGA.”
Kumo, who is also a recipient of the Leadership Group Public Officer of the Year 2014 Award, said that the award had encouraged him to do more in addressing the housing needs of Nigerians. (NAN)