Delegates seek collaboration on reliable housing data system
Housing practitioners have called on all stakeholders to collaborate in developing a reliable housing data system.
The practitioners, who met for four days as delegates to the 17th yearly Africa international housing show held in Abuja, noted that those on low and medium income do not have access to good and quality housing they can afford, while about 70 per cent of people living in Sub-Saharan Africa continue to live in informal settlements.
That whereas there have been increased dialogues, initiatives aimed at improving access to affordable housing, actual progress in terms of the number of homes built or bought via the formal sector is modest; there is a need to progress from rhetoric to actual delivery of new homes.
According to them, lack of data is a significant impediment to the development of the housing sector, as it inhibits investment and has adverse effects on the efficiency of Africa’s housing market.
They, therefore, urged collaboration between Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mortgage Bankers Association (MBAN), Real Estate Development Association of Nigeria (REDAN), Nigeria Mortgage Refinance Company (NMRC), Nigeria Bureau of Statistic and Nigeria Population Commission to establish a unified housing database under the management of NMRC.
They also called on the Federal Government to adopt the National Housing Strategy launched in May 2023 that mandates states and relevant government agencies to develop a clear implementation plan under the management of a Presidential Delivery Unit (PDU), while PDU should publish performance against targets quarterly.
The delegates noted the limited awareness of the urgent need to build green and reduce carbon emission arising from the housing development process.
“This is critical in the face of the increasing negative impact of climate change and the disproportionate effect on low- and medium-income households.”
They called on stakeholders to support change towards adopting more sustainable and environmentally friendly housing construction, servicing and maintenance practices. The practitioners also urged private and public sector developers to commit to net-zero targets in new housing developments, as well as embrace green certification processes on new developments.
The delegates also want the government to encourage indigenous professionals in the design and delivery of affordable housing.
“Housing can only be livable and beneficial in a properly located and physically planned environment. Governments at all levels should embark on aggressive urban planning to enhance the provision of infrastructure, which is the bedrock of good housing. The government must recognise the importance and energy of the youth who need housing solutions targeted at their life stage and capacities,” they said.
They further urged further investigation of non-developer led, incremental housing delivery, as well as partnership with co-operatives to broaden access to affordable housing.