Accolades, as housing pros, others honour Akomolede at 70
It was a celebration of professional accomplishments in Lagos last week when friends, well-wishers and professionals including estate surveyors gathered to honour Chief Kola Akomolede, Vice President, Africa, International Real Estate Federation (FIABCI), who turned 70 years.
Akomolede is one of the leading experts and often needs no introduction in the industry. He was the director of estates at the Lagos State Development Property Company (LSDPC), part of the team responsible for development of a number of low-income and medium-income housing estates in a number of locations in the state. A former national Publicity Secretary of the Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers, Secretary-General of Association of Housing Corporation of Nigeria among others positions.
Chief Akomolede has also written many articles and deliver several papers at local and international seminars, lectures and symposia and he is also the author of the book; ‘Estate Agency Practice in Nigeria.’
The occasion was attended by former governor of Ogun State; Chief Olusegun Osoba, former minister of health and social services; Prince Julius Adelusi Adeluyi, a professor of law; Dayo Akomolede, national president of Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers (NIESV); Mr. Rowland Abonta, reknown broadcaster; Mrs. Adesua Onyenokwe, and friends that include; Chief Segun Oloketuyi, and Mr. Remi Omotsho.
A highpoint of the event is the launch of a book titled; “40 years of housing discourse” authored by Akomolede amid encomiums from associates. For Femi Falana, “He is a man whom they say have paid and is still paying so much price for a course which he believes in.” Speaking at the occasion, a former Minister of Health and Social Services, Prince Julius Adelusi Adeluyi described Akomolede as a man who is so passionate about his profession and sometime get emotional on inaction, on the part of government towards the housing sector. He noted that over the years, the celebrant continued to offer solutions on ways to move the industry noting that he’s unique in his profession.
Former Governor of Ogun State, Chief Olusegun Osoba said he is a man that combines professionalism with a special sense of integrity in managing clients’ property adding that he’s a stickler to what he believes. To the chairman of the occasion; Remi Omotosho, and the secretary of Egbe Omo Ekiti-parapo, Mr. Sunday Olowoyobiojo, the celebrant is a majestic real estate professional/consultant and very hardworking.
Akomolede told The Guardian that his passion for the development of the built sector, regular exercises and love for writing as well as the grace of God, has kept him going in the profession.He said the Federal government needs to urgently address three major obstacles of; access to land, high mortgages and the increasing cost of building materials which are preventing low-income people from home-ownership in the country.
Akomolede said: “It’s regrettable, that Nigeria is the only country in the world where people buy houses on cash and carry basis. In abroad when people buy a house, they are asked to pay for it over a period of 30 or 50 years. “This is part of the reasons why people are stealing and engaging in corruption. Civil servants and workers who want to own a house takes them time to save money to buy houses. The absence of sound financial system has made people to design means cut corners”.
“I have written different articles on the cost of building materials telling government that they could do a lot by removing duties on building materials, machineries that are used for manufacturing building materials to bring down the cost of constructing building. If the three major obstacles are reviewed, it would be easy for the poor Nigerians to own houses”.He lamented that past governments in Nigeria has not taken housing as an important item on their agenda, which he noted, contributed to the dwindling fortune of the sector.
“Housing does not seem to be an issue of concern in Nigeria. For example, it took the government a long time to know that there is a need for ministry of housing, he concluded. The book reviewer, who is a columnist in The Guardian, Mr. Dare Babarinsa told the gathering that Akomolede’s book is a compilation of various articles and dwelled mainly on housing and related matters like land policy, land use laws, housing finance, rent control, edicts, land use charge, property management and maintenance, property taxes as well as property investment and housing policies in the country.
He added that the book which is simple to understand is a book for all, highly interesting and would also served as a guide to avoid being duped by quacks who operate in the real estate sector, how to sell property among other importance.
“The articles are compelling to read, deals with the centrality of housing for all Nigerians. Akomolede in some of the writings warned on the menacing danger of urban development in Lekki and Victoria Island. The book dwells on the reason for us to understand where we are coming from and the need to plan for the future”.“The book is met for politicians, cut across the wide spectrum of the society and it is met for researchers who want to know about real estate business, for students all over Nigeria’s higher institution, traditional rulers and Ekiti indigenes. Chief Akomolede is a man imbued with Godly character, a big influencer and someone who always inspire the young ones to aspire to greater height in Life”, he said.
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