In order to improve the management and administration of National Housing Fund contributions, the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) will tomorrow launch the National Housing Fund Mobile and Internet Platforms, at the International Conference Centre (ICC), Abuja.
The NHF Mobile and Internet platform is a multi-channel, contributor centric solution developed by the bank to improve transparency and accountability. The Platform among others will allow contributors check their contribution balances, receive sms alerts and account statements, update contact details and retrieve NHF numbers.
Speaking on the development, the President of Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria (REDAN) Rev Ugochukwu Chime described it as a phenomenal development and a plus for contributors to the National Housing Fund.
He said ‘’Hitherto, people have been finding it difficult to know about their contribution to the NHF, now it is possible for someone to know that by the click of a hand from his smart phone, he can know his balance status and everything, that takes it to the next level and makes it possible for them to serve a greater number of Nigerians.
‘’By this singular act FMBN has now keyed in the direction of the banking, globally, that will increase the viability of the enterprise, and increase access of people to them’’. He said.
According to Chime, the innovation will even encourage unbanked people in rural areas to key into the Fund.
‘’People in rural areas who do not have a bank around them but have a phone can also key in and become a contributor or even take a mortgage from anywhere in the 774 local governments Nigeria’’.
He further applauded the innovation and pledged the support of REDAN for FMBN. ‘’I really want to appreciate them for this innovation they have brought, and I assure them that REDAN, who are building houses across the whole country are determined to key into it and work with them, it is also what we are doing to enable contributors know who the developers are, and where the houses are located’’.
‘’REDAN has keyed into it and we will work in concert with the FMBN to unlock the potentials in the affordable housing sector’’ he concluded.
To throw his weight behind the development, the President, Mortgage Banking Association of Nigeria (MBAN) Mr Adeniyi Akinlusi, noted that ‘’It is a step forward in the NHF Scheme, this is a step that should have been taken over 25 years ago, and now that we are taking it, we should salute the current management of FMBN, we might not be getting everything right, but we are getting somethings right, and this is a strategic step towards enhancing access to NHF and also making the contributors confident in the scheme’’
Speaking further he said ‘’For us in MBAN, we are in full support, and this is part of what we have been discussing in our technical policy meetings, that we need to make Nigerians believe in NHF so that we can deliver on our mandate of providing affordable housing’’.
Also speaking in support of the NHF Mobile App, the Chief Executive Officer, Mortgage Warehouse Funding Limited, Mr Sonnie Ayere, said
‘’It is a fantastic development, because it now makes it easier for people to contribute their fund, it will help their collections for people in the informal sector, because the formal sector will normally be deducted from salary earnings, but for the informal sector who are not necessarily salary based, but also want to contribute, it is a fantastic initiative for them’’.
The President Housing Development Advocacy Network, Mr Festus Adebayo, while commending the introduction of the NHF Mobile and Internet platform by FMBN, said ‘’the new management of FMBN have written their names in gold, by the time the story of FMBN is written their name will appear conspicuously as those who brought transparency and innovation to NHF’’.
He further called on other service oriented housing related agencies to emulate the giant strides of FMBN, and added that the innovation will encourage States who are yet to fully embrace the NHF to join the scheme.
‘’There is no doubt that this new gesture of FMBN, can be used to attract those states who have not been contributing to the fund’ ’He declared.
Affa Dickson Acho