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Muhammadu Indimi

REDAN identifies land, finance as major housing challenges

“The Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria (REDAN) has identified land issues and lack of finance as major hindrance to achieving housing for all in the country.”- Business Day

Ugochukwu Chime, the President of the association, made the observation on Wednesday at the Building Expo and intensive workshop for real estate developers in Abuja.

Chime regretted that there was no finance, no access to land and no law backing estate development in the country.

“There is no real estate bill; the building of houses should be streamlined so that we will know who does what,” he said.

He said that the private sector and government did not know what was required to build a house, adding that other various components such as legal backing were not in place.

He said that in Nigeria individuals were in the habit of building their own houses but the paradigm shift from that to mass housing has not been captured,

The president stressed the need for the government to solve the problem of housing deficits in the country.

The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola urged REDAN to take the advantage of the recently two billion dollar Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed with Federal Mortgage Bank Nigeria and SHELTER AFRIQUE to provide affordable housing for Nigerians.

Represented by Abiodun Oke, Special Adviser to minister on housing, Fashola noted that the expo would project the sector to innovations, thereby resuscitating and strengthening the industry.

Anthony Okwa, Managing Director, Construction, Skills, Training and Empowerment Programme (C-STEMP) presented a paper entitled: “Standardisation and Local Content for Housing.”

Okwa noted that standardisation can only be achieved when there are generally acceptable guidelines with regard to the production of houses.

The expert said stakeholders should focus on consideration of standardised components and building materials for the construction of houses to reduce production and maintenance cost.

“The preponderance of substandard houses, deficit in supply and non-affordability across the country has made standardisation and enhancement of local content necessary for the removal of variations and irregularities in the activities of housing delivery.

“Formulation and implementation of building standards in Nigeria has been quite slow, this has provided space for foreign materials, substandard building resources and quackery,” Okwa said.

The two day event has its theme as “Investing in Real Estate for Economic Recovery and Expansion.”

The expo also features exhibition stands for some building companies namely, Urban Shelter Ltd., Hydrafoam Engineering Nigeria Ltd, a bricks producing company and Berger Paint, an indigenous paint company.

Others are Jedo Investment Ltd, Royal Ceramic Ltd, producers of assorted tiles, C-STEmp and GAP PLC.

Source: Business Day

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