Housing Show: NGO seeks partnership with FG to shelter indigent women

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The Women in Housing Sector Initiative (WIHSI), a housing NGO, has
appealed for Federal Government’s partnership, to achieve its
objective of providing affordable housing for indigent women.

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Mrs Adenike Fasanya-Osilaja, Founder of the NGO, made the appeal
during the convention of the NGO on the sideline of the ongoing 12th
Abuja International Housing Show, organised by FESADEB Communications
Ltd.

WIHSI Promotes the visibility, advancement and well-being of women in
the housing sector and advocates increased empowerment of women
through housing stability and home ownership.

Fasanya-Osilaja, an International Housing Finance Consultant noted
that the NGO, was focused to ease the plight of indigent women, who
were victims of catastrophic circumstances.

Fasanya-Osilaja said that the NGO was interested in working with the
government at all levels, to identify and prepare women for duties and
privileges of home ownership.

According to her, women have typically been the silent unseen partners
in housing arrangements since the olden days, even though in several
cultures women could still not own land or property in their names.

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“This has created a position of great vulnerability for women, who
literally have a roof over their heads at the mercy of one man or the
other in their lives.

“The woman’s capacity to have enjoyment in her residence is also
directly affected by her relationship with the benefactor, who it is
his cultural right to evict her from the property for any reason at
any time.

The consultant stated that in Nigeria the cultural norm was for a
husband to evict a spouse in case of divorce or separation.

She noted the death of a spouse as another prevalent cause of
eviction for women in many Nigerian cultures, noting that the eviction
typically involves the children too.

“This is why the WIHSI, an NGO formed by women professionals in the
housing sector, has created a highly specialised platform to assist
our sisters with this type of need.

“The platform, aptly named `Housing Women, Housing our Future’ is
created out of the recognition that those of us with expertise in the
sector must pool talents together to support women.

She said “Operation Earn Your Own Home’’ was the pilot programme of
the NGO, to ensure that every displaced woman, who achieved home
ownership through grant passed it on through specific steps.

According to Fasanya-Osilaja, WIHSI is interested in working with the National Assembly. She said “We are aware that the National Assembly of Nigeria for instance is building about 6,000 property units in the very near future.  We would be very privileged to be assigned a number of units, precisely 500 units for a start, for the afore-mentioned pilot project. ”

She added that “Our capacity to effectively administer the proposed pilot project is not in doubt, and our integrity is indisputable.  We would, of course, be happy to have the project monitored by agreed an agreed third party”

Also speaking, Dr Chi Akporji, Nigeria Mortgage and Refinancing
Company (NMRC), advised the NGO to key into its Corporate Social
Responsibility Programme, which had empowered many artisans.

Akporji said that NMRC was planning to wrap up the programme by
involving many women to enhance the sector skill.

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