COPEN Group inaugurates fifth housing estate in Enugu

COPEN Group, a consortium of God fearing professionals on Monday in Enugu inaugurated its fifth housing estate aimed at reducing the housing deficit in Enugu State.

The Group Managing Director, Rev. Ugochukwu Chime, said that the company had been involved in providing affordable housing to residents of the state in partnership with the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN).

Chime, who is also the National President of Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria, said that the development of the estates were not without their challenges which could have undermined their realisation.

He said that the company was able to inaugurate the various projects due to God’s favour and the goodwill of their partners.

“COPEN has been involved in various capacities in the conceptualization, planning, design, financial intermediation, supervision, construction and management of estates development for organizations and governments across the country,” he said.

Chime named some of the estates completed so far by the group as Bethel Estate, Goshen Estate, Jubilee Estate and Elim Estate.

“The patronage and interest we got from the development of the development of Bethel Estate confirmed that Enugu is considerable yearning for effective and affordable housing,” he said.

Chime said that as part of the company’s corporate social responsibility, “we shall give free three to six months artisanal training to 23 youths of Amaechi Uwani Community.

“This is to ensure that their skill-set is in tandem with current use of the land. This is a policy I am introducing as National President of Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria.

“It is called 20 for 1 policy: Train a youth for every 20 housing units you build,” he said.

Chime appealed to the state government to further reduce the transaction cost and time for title perfection which he said was solely borne by property owners.

He appealed to the state government to provide infrastructure to the boundary of estates in Enugu in line with National Housing Policy Document.

Lagos State, Echostone Limited To Develop 20,000 Housing Units

The Lagos State Government on Wednesday, signed a Memorandum of Understanding with a real estate developer, Echostone Limited, to build 20,000 housing units in the state within four years.

Speaking while signing the partnership agreement, Mr Gbolahan Lawal, the state Commissioner for Housing, said Lagos State would provide the land as its equity contribution, while Echostone would finance the project.

“This partnership is in line with the state governments Lagos Affordable Public Housing (LAPH) initiative, and it is aimed at constructing 20,000 housing units over a period of four years, towards reducing the housing deficit.

“To this end, the state has identified land in various locations across the state; the land is the state government’s equity while the private investor will contribute funding and technical expertise,” he said.

He said that Echostone will commence with the provision of 2000 housing units in three locations.

“The company is expected to start with 2000 housing units in three locations within the state, namely, Idale in Badagry, Ayobo in Alimosho and Imota in Ikorodu.

“An initial total of 2000 housing units are expected to be delivered in these three locations ” he said.
Mr Anthony Rachia, representing Echostone, said that the objective of the company was to construct houses on a large scale, and to create jobs.

“Our objective is to help bridge the housing deficit in Nigeria and also help generate employment by building houses in large scale and also creating jobs.

” We have the technology to construct quality houses faster, and by the time we commence construction in February, 2018, we would create 6000 jobs,” he said.

The Lagos State had earlier partnered with two mortgage financing companies in its efforts to boost the housing sector in the state.

The companies are Brains and Hammers Nigeria Limited and Multipurpose Infrastructure Development Company Limited.

‘Investors should pay attention to property maintenance’

The Business Development Manager, Provast Limited, Mr. Segun Olabode, says investors in real estate should place emphasis on efficient management and maintenance of their existing stock of properties so as to enjoy maximum returns on their investments.

Olabode, who is an estate surveyor and valuer as well as a facility manager, spoke at a master class for members of the Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers, Lagos State Branch, recently.


He said there was also a need for an effective safety management system to be in place.

Olabode stated, “The objective of a safety management system is to provide a structured management approach to control safety risks in operations. Effective safety management must take into account the specific structures and processes related to safety.
“The SMS is a comprehensive and integrated system that ensures that all work at the facility or site is conducted safely and should be fully documented, accessible and comprehensible to those that need to use it.”

According to him, property owners, organisations and investors prefer outsourcing the management of their facilities and structures so as to get better returns on investments.

Gemade accuses FG of withholding N100billion appropriated for housing

The Chairman Senate Committee on Lands, Housing and Urban Development, Senator Barnabas Gemade, has revealed that the sum of N100 billion appropriated in the 2017 Budget as intervention fund, to support mortgage activities in the country has not been released to the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN).

This is even as the year will elapse in few weeks’ time, and the National Assembly has commenced deliberations on the 2018 Budget presented by President Muhammadu Buhari.

Gemade, who made the disclosure while the committee was on oversight function at the FMBN, urged the Bank to liaise with the supervisory Ministry of Power, Works, and Housing, and the Ministry of Finance, to ensure that the fund so appropriated is released to it for the purpose.

Furthermore, he urged stakeholders including the Federal Government, Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), and the Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund (NSITF), to pay up their equity contribution and actualise the recapitalisation of the FMBN.

NSIA Plans Massive Investment In Infrastructure

The Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority on Wednesday said it was planning to invest massively in the Nigerian Infrastructure Debt Fund being managed by Chapel Hill Denham Nigeria.

The NSIA said this in a statement issued in Abuja and signed by its Communications Adviser, Mr. Titilope Olubiyi.

It, however, did not disclose the amount to be invested, but added that the investment was consistent with its mandate of playing a leading role in sustained economic development for the benefits of Nigeria.

The NIDF is a Nigerian domiciled close-ended fund. It is the first and only domestic currency listed infrastructure debt fund across Africa.

It is focused on mobilising domestic savings, particularly pension funds, life insurance companies, large corporates as well as family office groups for investing in economically critical and financially viable infrastructure assets.

The fund supports traditional infrastructure sectors, primarily transport, power, renewable energy, utilities, energy infrastructure, logistics and other public-private partnership type investments, with naira long-dated senior debt.

The statement said the NIDF was able to support these projects with long-term financing and in the process, would generate superior risk adjusted returns for its investors

Commenting on the investment, the Chief Executive Officer/Managing Director, NSIA, Uche Orji, said, “We are pleased to support the NIDF, as it is consistent with the NSIA’s strategy of enabling Nigeria pension fund participation in infrastructure, makes available long-term naira financing, and is led by a high-quality management team.

“We look forward to working with the NIDF team to ensure that the fund grows through further institutional investor participation and access to high-quality investments.”

The statement also quoted the Chief Executive Officer of Chapel Hill Denham, Mr. Bolaji Balogun, to have said that the fund would direct institutional investments into productive infrastructure assets.

He said, “Mobilisation of domestic currency sources for funding infrastructure is critical for Nigeria, in order to meaningfully bridge the existing infrastructure deficit.

“The NIDF directs institutional investments into productive infrastructure assets, which have a positive development impact, through the multiplier effect on investments, economic growth and well-being of the population.

“The NIDF has the potential to mobilise a meaningful proportion of this requirement by channelling the growing pension and insurance assets as well as other long-term pools of capital into infrastructure investment and financing.”

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