By Ebenezer Anukam
As 2024 beckons, the expectations of many Nigerians are that the new crop of leaders can clean up the augean Stable in the Housing Sector.
The curtain draws for a New Year to begin, and the Voice of Nigerians across the length and breadth of the country remains Polemic in calling the government to alleviate the sufferings of the masses in 2024. This is due to the fact that 2023 was an unforgettable experience across all sectors of the economy, including the housing Industry.
Most of the experts in the Housing Development Advocacy network (HDAN) WhatsApp group, call on government to avoid political will in the coming year and transform major resolutions and suggestions on that platform into actions. The pertinent issues are housing data/ survey, regulating the real estate business to protect consumers, creating enabling environment for real estate developers, cutting down multiple taxes, repositioning and empowering federal mortgage bank of nigeria, Family homes funds and federal housing Authority, creating access for land acquisition, issuance of land titles among others.
According to reliable data from verified sources, the housing Deficit in Nigeria seems to have widened more than ever. In 1991, Nigeria’s housing deficit was at 7 million and rose to 12 million in 2007, 14 million in 2010, and 20 million units in 2018, and in 2023, Nigeria has an estimated 28 million housing deficit. With about only 20% of 218 Million Nigerians as home owners. However, in reality, these figures may present a tiny silver to the realities on ground.
Other trends are the Spate of recurrent building collapse which has surged across the nation, Land grabbing, demolitions of homes, Complexes and other structures including other lodes of brick walls confronting the Industry. The National Bureau of Statistics announced the number of Nigerians living in multi-dimensional poverty as over 133 million. As a result, low-income earners are on the edge of the cliff as regards having access to affordable housing.
It is not a hidden case that The Minister of Housing and Urban Development arc. Ahmed Musa Dangiwa has bold plans for the Sector, however, most Nigerians are eager to see how the Ministry translates these plans to actions.
Earlier this month, the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development listed its priority projects for 2024, including the construction of 20,000 housing units to provide affordable shelter and reduce the housing deficit in Nigeria. Other core areas include Upscaling slums’ upgrading and urban renewal programmes across the 36 states of the federation and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) and settlement of liabilities among other key Projects.
It is obvious that the blueprint has been laid for the housing Industry in the coming years. Now, expectations are eager to see how the current Minister of Housing and Urban Development, arc. Ahmed Dangiwa steers the Ship of the Housing Industry, amidst numerous challenges and the murky waters of the harsh economic realities of the day