Affordable housing and the run away cost of building material; a convenient paradox
The responsibility to set a convenient business space is that of government. Government may not have business in business though this should not create alibi for government to abdicate its responsibilities in regulating the business environment.
The enabling environment allows the small and big players to co-exist. The coexistence leads to very healthy competition which in turn leads to a better consumer marketer. Unfortunately, this government has practically politicized every aspect of our lives. The will to take decisions that benefit the majority of Nigerians is totally absent. To buttress this postulation, I have decided to share this empherical historical evidence with my teaming readers with credit to the Society for Business and Management Dynamics“…1999
An ambitious housing policy was launched by the then military government in 1991 with a slogan
“Housing for All by the Year 2000A.D’’. The goal was for all Nigerians to have access to decent housing at affordable cost before the end of year 2000 A.D. The housing needs in the country as at that the lunch of the policy stand at about 8million units including projection in meeting the policy target in both rural and urban centers in response to united nations advocacy which calls for housing for all by the year 2000A.D (Ogunrayewa and Madaki, 1999).This is through adequate involvement of the private sector in infrastructural provision and to serve as the main vehicle for organization and delivery of housing
Business Management Dynamics Vol.3, No.2 Aug 201, pp.60 -68 Society for Business and Management Dynamics products and services (Yakubu, 2004; Aribigbola, 2008).The policy estimated that 700,000 housing units are to be built each year if housing deficit is to be cancelled of which about 60percent of the houses are to be built in urban centers. The policy restructured the financial routing of accessing housing loans by way of creating a two tier financial structure, which is the federal mortgage bank of Nigeria as the apex and supervisory institution and primary mortgage institutions as primary lenders. However, in 2007 the FMBN conceded supervisory functions to CBN (Yakubu, 2004; Aribigbola, 2008).The FMBN nevertheless was empowered through decree no. 82 of 1993 to collects, manage and administer contributions to the National Housing Fund (NHF) from registered individuals and companies. The National Housing Fund is the product of the 1992 Housing Policy of the Federal Government of Nigeria.
According to The Nigerian Economist (1992) Decree No. 3 of 1992which was packaged against the background of the National Housing, Policy (NHP), is a legal instrument for mandating individuals and government to pool resources into the National Housing Fund (NHF). The NHF can be seen as the ultimate culmination of the previous efforts of governments in Nigeria at housing provisioning. The policy establishing the NHF emanated from recognition of the severe housing problems in most of Nigeria’s urban areas (Anugwom and Anugwom, 1999). Therefore, the policy took cognizance of both the qualitative (existence of substandard housing,) and quantitative (severe housing shortages) nature of the problem. The 1992 Decree more or less pursued the original objectives outlined in the National Housing Policy: (1980); the main objectives of which were:
a. To ensure that the provision of housing units are based on realistic standards which the house owners can afford;
b. To give priority to housing programmes designed to benefit the low income group; and
c. To encourage every household to own its own house through the provision of more credit or fund (this specific objective more or less crystallised into the NHF).Apart from these previous objectives, the 1992 policy aimed at keeping in line with the enabling objective of the United Nations Commission on Human Settlements.
Thus, it was geared towards mobilising resources for effective house ownership by workers while at the same time de-emphasising the intrusiveness of government in the housing sector. The NHF was initially meant to facilitate the now discarded vision of housing for all by the year 2000A.D which was long being over taken by events…”