FG committed to functional, sustainable infrastructure provision —Fashola

housingNot been unmindful of the expectations of Nigerians as far as infrastructure provisions is concerned, and giving the enormous responsibility he carries, Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, last week, reemphasised the commitment of the present administration to the provision of sustainable infrastructure and other amenities.

The Minister, who reeled out the achievements of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration in the areas of power, works and housing in the last three and half years, said the projects executed by his ministry are of high qualities capable of standing the test of time.

Going back the memory lane, Fashola noted that in 2015 when the current administration came into office, the budget left behind for the three ministries, by the previous government was N19 billion for works, N5 Billionfor power, and N1.2 Billionfor housing making a total of N25.2 Billion.

In the year 2017, the budget for works was N394 Billion; Power was N69.96 Billionand Housing was N64.9 Billion (Total N529 Billion).

“However, in a country where the population is growing faster than the infrastructure, the difference between these budgets must tell you that this government is more serious about providing infrastructure to support the people.

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“So, if you need more roads, more bridges, more power, more housing and Job opportunities and prosperity that their delivery will bring, your choice in the next election should be easier’,said Fashola, urging Nigerians not to go back to a budget of N25.2 Billion for Infrastructure, but to move forward with a budget for Infrastructure which has grown to N543 Billion in 2018.

To justify his position that the administration is on right footing, the minister compared the difference between these two budget sizes, saying that the last government was spending less on infrastructure for almost one decade when oil prices stayed at $100 per barrel while his government is spending more on infrastructure when oil prices largely hovered between $40-$60.

He also emphasised the fact  that over the last 10 years, from the proceeds of oil, Saudi Arabia spent $420 billion on infrastructure. But quickly to add that the issue is not about spending money alone, but rather, about what were done with it; and what was left behind for the current government.

“What was left behind were massive debts owed to contractors who had not been paid for 3 to 5 years and who had laid off thousands of workers and shut down equipment and plants, which was the reasons the economy first went into recession.

Besides, the minister bemoaned a huge debts owed state government’s, that was inherited by this administration. “State governments who were forced to intervene on federal infrastructure especially roads and bridges. That figure stands at about N450 Billion!.

He stated that they were preoccupied with the payment of contractors and that as at  today, there is no state in Nigeria where government is not building, at least, one Federal road.

The minister, while emphasising the commitment of government to housing projects, noted that: “ More than anything,  we are constructing houses in 34 states in a pilot scheme to determine affordability and acceptability; and we have 90 transmission projects aimed at improving connectivity between the GenCos and the DisCos to increase the power sector.

“On the housing side, as I stated, we are in every state including all the states of the South West except Lagos. Each site employs not less than 1,000 people made up of builders, artisans, fabricators, and vendors of various items with the plan to do much more”, he said.

Buhari, infrastructure Resuscitated projects

The minister also hinted that close to 90 projects that were in moribund state were resuscitated.

“ Close to 90 projects are largely resuscitated because this government has recovered 690 containers of power equipment out of over 800 containers left at the Port for almost a decade because they did not pay contractors, who then could not pay the shippers and warehouse companies.

The Buhari led government, according to him,  has done a lot in the area of power and still  making progress. The projects are ongoing in Adamawa, Odogunyan) (Ejigbo) (Apo) (Damaturu) are some of those completed Transmission Sub-stations.

 Presidential Infrastructure Development Fund

Apparently to hasten road infrastructure development, especially, roads, the minister also hinted that there is now a Presidential Infrastructure Development Fund to ensure that the Second Niger bridge, the Abuja-Kaduna-Kano Road, Lagos-Ibadan expressway and some other projects are not deprived of funding again.

He listed major roads in the Southwest like the Lagos-Otta-Abeokuta Road, the Ikorodu-Sagamu road, which had been deserted and left to decay, now have contractors at work.

The Apapa- TinCan – Mile 2 -Oshodi- Oworonshoki road has been awarded and work should start sometime in November this year as the construction equipment are being readied”, he said, noting that the move will give a final solution for the gridlock that was inherited from the last government.

However, he emphasised that its going to take more than one election cycle to consolidate on the progress made so far, stating that unwise choice of those to come into power can reverse the highlighted progress.


“Those from Ondo and environs will agree that although the work is not finished, but travel time on the Benin-Ore-Sagamu road has reduced. Our contractor is on site and has to work while you use the road. The same is true of the Lagos-Ibadan expressway that connects 3 states of Lagos, Ogun and Oyo; and links to Ondo and beyond.

“Those who use the road will acknowledge that you no longer have to spend the night on the road. You can go to Ibadan from Lagos and be sure that you can return on the same day.

“Yet, we have not finished. Please as you prepare to choose next year, remember those long hours on Benin-Ore, Lagos-Ibadan that sometimes stretched into the Night. Do you want to go back ?”, asked Fashola rhetorically.

Statistics to backup claims

According to the minister, the last quarter report of the National Bureau of Statistics for Q2 of 2018 shows the following rate of growth in sectors affected by the Ministry of Power Works and Housing:

Transportation – (Road, rail, water and air)  – 21.76percent;

Construction – 7.66percent and  Electricity- 7.59 percent.

However, Fashola said he was convinced that it is not just travel time reduction, and economic growth that is impacted, the number of road traffic accidents, injuries and loss of lives are reducing month by month as FRSC figures from June and July 2018 show. While the biggest cause of accidents remains speed violations.

Power sector

Let me close with some specific comments on power in the South West :- Magboro, Mowe, Ibafo, Ondo (North and South) are communities who were never connected to power supply before.

“That story has changed. They are now connected and experiencing power supply. That is change, because we increased generation from4,000 to 7,000 MW; averaging 1,000 MW per annum; Transmission from5,000 to 7,000MWaveraging 660MW per annum, and distribution from 2,690 MW in May 2015 to 5,222MW in January 2018, averaging844 MW per annum.

“We have not finished and we have not reached everybody yet; but many of you can tell the difference now and attest to the fact that things have changed for the better.

“ I want sincere Nigerians to ask each other, if they use their  generator longer today than in 2015 or if they spend less money on diesel today than in 2015, or if you are getting power supply longer today than in 2015.

“Also ask yourself who has done better: 4,000 MW over 16 years at an average 250 MW per annum? Or 3000 MW over 3 years at an average of 1000 MW per annum?”. He asked.



Eko Atlantic City: Estate Surveyors appeal for infrastructure management jobs

Eko Boulevard View Estate on the Eko Atlactic City

In recognition of the inability of the country to make after-development-plans, the National Council of the Nigerian Institute of Estate Surveyors and Valuers (NIESV) has called on the Lagos State government to consider its members as managers of infrastructure in the ambitious Eko Atlantic city project.

Coming on the heels of the just concluded national council meeting of the institute in Lagos, Rowland Abonta, president of NIESV disclosed that for the Lagos State government to get value from the volume of investment made in Eko Atlantic City, they are recommending a partnership with the professional body.

“I am talking about the infrastructures in Eko Atlantic City as well as the public buildings in Eko Atlantic City and of course the management of that city as an estate, as these fall under the purview of estate surveyors and valuers to manage.”

To buttress his point, Abonta maintained that the law that registers estate surveyors and valuers, has a provision in it for facility management and that by their training, they are properly trained to manage such facilities in Nigeria.

He added that they are the foremost profession in the field of facility management; as a result, they are asking to partner with the government of Lagos State, particularly in the management of Eko Atlantic City as they have the professional knowhow when it comes to that.

Facility management, he said, is a multidisciplinary profession, and that there is no special law that has registered anybody as a facility manager, except the Estate Surveyors and Valuers Board (ESVABON) Act of 1975, which made provision for facility management by valuers.

During a courtesy visit to the Lagos State government, represented by the Honourable Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure, Engr Ade Akinsanya, the NIESV council appreciated the government for employing over 150 of their members as well as the patronage extended to their members in the private sector.

The NIESV president requested that they are also looking forward to further invitation by the Lagos State government for the valuation of the remaining infrastructures within the state.

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They also took time out to educate their host about the functions of their profession ranging from land administration, to valuation of assets, keeping of records of assets, facility management of infrastructures and quite a number of other services. And at the same time, they extended a partnership invitation to the government on the forthcoming conference.

“Part of the programme that culminated to this meeting is the interview of new members into the professional grade of the institution; we have about 116 candidates that were interviewed and quite a number of them passed the interview as future estate surveyors that would be inducted in the nearest into the institute; that is, in the month of December they would be inducted as estate surveyors.

“And of course, we know that the entire Lagos State is a metropolitan city as well as an exemplary city in our nation; many other cities borrow a cue from here on how to run their cities. As a professional body that is foremost in the management of the built environment, our coming to Lagos is historic because the profession itself started here in Lagos by the first generation of estate surveyors who trained in Britain and came back to Nigeria to form a body that is similar to the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.”

Still on the choice of Lagos for the forthcoming conference, he said that the state holds a dear place in their hearts as more than 60 per cent of their members practice in Lagos.

On the credibility of land data and housing stock in Nigeria, Abonta confessed that it is an area that the country is not doing too well. According to him, no particular government in Nigeria has been able to do a proper housing survey. You need a proper survey to know what the housing stock is, he said, however, we depend on foreign figures foisted on us

As a solution, he remarked that they were involved in advocacy, to encourage the government to be serious with housing issues so as to aid real estate practice in the city of Lagos and the nation in general.

“We are partnering with government, making offer to government that NIESV is ready to assist in conducting housing survey nationwide. By God’s grace we have branches across the nation; all we need is to mobilize our members in those branches and they would be able to easily capture the data in housing, which will be very useful to government.

“Presently, our research and development committee is embarking on a new survey for the purpose of establishing a real estate data for the city of Abuja; we will not hesitate to do the same thing in Lagos too, if we have the encouragement, particularly from the government.”

The Valuer indicated that since his resumption of office as the president of the institute, that he and his excos have been able to instill discipline in the way members conduct their businesses. NIESV today, he said, is now much more known than most other professional bodies.

Also, he said that they have been able to engage several other categories of professionals that in one way or the other relate with the institute.

He narrated that as at the time of their taking over the realms of affairs of the institute, the construction of the NIESV secretariat in Abuja was at the DPC (damp-proof course) level, but that presently, he can say authoritatively, they are going higher in the five story structure.

“We have done the first floor slab and we are continuing. It is a five-storey building and our target is that NIESV will move into that building before the end of this administration

“Our membership has increased; within these eight months of assumption, we have interviewed over 200 members, we have received foreign professionals; just last week some professionals came from the United States for an exchange programme in the area of capacity building.

During the courtesy visit, the Commissioner appreciated their presence and assured that the state government will try its best to assist in whatever way possible.

SOURCE: Daily Independent

Stakeholders, residents groan over deplorable facilities in Nigerian housing estates

Residents and Stakeholders have complained over the deplorable state of facilities and conditions in Nigerian housing estate.

They lamented over the poor state of facilities in federal government/state owned housing estates in the country, which are suffering from negligence and lack of maintenance.

Maintenance of existing housing stock has been in the front burner without any concrete action or blueprint by the authorities. For instance, the Nigerian Housing Policy (NHP) didn’t provide for the maintenance to ensure longevity and aesthetic look of government owned buildings.

According to the United Nations Centre for Human Settlement (UNCHS), poor housing maintenance in many developing countries has led to deplorable building conditions and is worsened by lack of workable strategies/techniques for implementation.

Specifically, in most Nigerian housing estates , the non-maintenance of major buildings and infrastructure such as, road network and associated sewages/drainages, gates/security posts, shopping facilities, and parking spaces, green areas, street light, perimetre fencing, refuse collection bins and disposal, power and water supply among others, have left the estates in shambles.

This is evident in locations like, Gwarinpa, Lugbe, Kubwa, Kado and Karu of the Federal Capital Territory.

According to the Chairman of Lugbe Residents Association, Mr. Odelana Adesina, the estate, which accommodates more than 70,000 residents, lacked pipe-borne water; waste disposal system as well as good road networks, thus, placing the residents in a precarious situation and susceptible to health challenges.

Adesina bemoaned the absence of light and government’s hospital in the locations and called for immediate solution to the problem.

The situation is the same at the Festac Town, a federal housing estate located along the Lagos-Badagry Expressway in Lagos. It showed that many of the windows in the housing units have been broken, the gates are visibly rotten, residents worry about power supply and the general aesthetics of an ideal housing units are lacking.

Speaking on the state of facilities in the estate, a resident, Mr. Uche Amadi lamented that issues of water supply and power have held resident bound overtime.

According to him, power supply has been irregular, making it impossible for residents to pump water. He stressed that absence of power in the estate has also impacted negatively on his barbing salon business as he often rely on generator.

“Most times, we have to buy water from hawkers because of poor power supply and that is additional expenses for us. It is also usually a noisy environment as neighbours would put on their generators”.

On her part, Mrs. Funmilayo Ojerinde said the physical outlook of the estate is a disincentive to would be tenants as the paintwork has faded over the years, making the structures to look very old.  She lamented that on several occasions, her family has to set aside special budget to fix windows that have become broken and repair the busted pipes connecting the sewage system.

For residents at the Satellite Town Estate, basic infrastructures like good roads, water, drainage system and power supply are critical problems that they battle with. Investigations revealed that the ridiculous state of infrastructure in area, which is making residents to desert the area.

The situation is not different for resident in Kudeyibu and Ire Akari Estates in Igando/Ikotun Local Council of Lagos State are facing the challenge of poor drainage, power supply and bad road among others. According to residents the ugly situation, has made motorists to avoid the communities especially during raining seasons.

A resident in the area, Adebisi Bello said that the road has been in bad form for over seven years.

Bello posited that the bad road affects the movement of vehicles and pedestrians within and outside the community because the only road that connects the residents to other parts of Lagos is in a bad shape. He said residents always engage in clearing the drainage every Saturdays to ensure that the road is at least passable after the rains.

Also, findings during a visit to Gowon Estate, a federal government residential located at Egbeda, Lagos which houses the Nigerian Navy, the Police and Customs, revealed the height of deterioration of situated facilities like toilets, water tanks, windows, the building walls and the estates are generally wearing slum-like status.

Reacting to the development, the Group Managing Director, International Facilities Service, Dr. Tunde Ayeye lamented the sad commentary as it relate to management of estates as well as other infrastructure across the nation.

According to him, there was the need to create a commercial conversation for the private sector to be involved in the maintenance of the estates and assets. He noted that the resources required to manage public buildings are very huge and as much as the government might be trying, the resources are not just enough to salvage the ugly situation.

Ayeye said: “Government needs to move its spending from input, production, to the output side. Handover the facilities including buildings, health and educational facilities to the private sector and let them be responsible for their management while government should establish the standard with which they should operate and strictly demand certain level of standard of operation from the facility managers”.

Commenting, the Group Managing Director/CEO, Alpha Mead Facilities, Mr. Femi Akintunde observed that when people don’t have common objectives and goals, it becomes difficult to harmonise the interest to maintain federal government estates which nobody currently see as anybody’s estates unlike private residential where the developer would have put certain structures, plans/modalities in place for maintenance.

He said, “The estates were established at a time when government believed that it would manage them, the economic situation as at the time coupled with the way government was structured made it possible, but, the situation has changed and we have not adapted to the current situation to suit the condition of those estates. For instance, FESTAC which was built by Federal Government and given to civil servants, the ministry could maintain it as at the time but we reached a point when those estates were sold.

“We can’t call those estates federal government owned anymore, because private people have owned it. The more we call them federal government estate, the less people would take responsibility for their maintenance. We must manage the perception that it’s privately owned”.

He posited that the ownership which transferred to people didn’t make the responsibility for management as an institution that could sustain it like when it was being run by the government. He added that the responsibility to manage the assets, has been decentralised based on the ownership structure.

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Akintunde further, noted that it’s possible that certain maintenance constitution might have been put in place but lamented on how enforceable the constitutions are. According to him, facility management requires funding and once the services can’t be funded through a well structured programme, it would be difficult to sustain standard of maintenance.

“The people in those estates have to carry out the maintenance, organised themselves into bodies, commit every members to a communal forum; empower them through legal right to note everyone interest.”

He also said that “the body saddled with the responsible could organise the estates into a sizable units and get a consultant to develop a maintenance programme for them. The services to be provided would cover environmental and things like road and drains maintenance, street light, security, recreation area, cleaning, refuse collection and landscaping.”


What the 2018 Budget means for housing:extension of Help to Buy, stamp duty cut for shared ownership and a boost to council house building

Brexit uncertainty and a shortage of homes has continued to contribute to a stilted property market across the country.

Presenting the Autumn budget, Chancellor Philip Hammond said a ‘turning point in our nation’s recovery’ has been reached and vowed that the era of austerity was ending.

Budget measures aimed at tackling housing issues included an extension of the government’s Help to Buy scheme and a boost to council house building.

Stamp duty has been abolished for many shared-ownership buyers, while a surcharge of one per cent for non-residents buying homes in England and Northern Ireland has been proposed.

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The Chancellor also pledged an additional £500million for the Housing Infrastructure Fund for councils, to promote the building of 650,000 more homes.

So what does it all mean?

Help to Buy scheme extended to 2023

The Help to Buy equity loan scheme, which offers a 20 per cent government loan (40 per cent in London) to buyers of new-build properties, has been extended to 2023 and new regional price caps for a property to be eligible for the scheme will be introduced.

Help to Buy had already been extended until April 2021 but the Budget confirmed it will be funded for a further two years, for first-time buyers only, until March 2023.

In addition, the price caps for homes eligible for the scheme have changed. They will now be set at 1.5 times the average forecast first-time buyer price in an area, to reflect huge regional variations in house prices.

In London the maximum price of a Help to Buy house will be £600,000, in the South East it will be £437,600, while in the North East it will be £186,100.

Some commentators welcomed the boost for developers, who will have a guaranteed stream of government funding for a further two years.

“Not only do housebuilders now have more certainty for longer-term planning and building the thousands of new homes our country so desperately needs, but it also gives potential buyers who are saving for a deposit the peace of mind that they too can benefit from the scheme over the coming years,” said Kevin Roberts, director of Legal & General Mortgage Club.

But others questioned how helpful the scheme had been to struggling first-time buyers.

“Originally designed to help those in less fortunate financial positions, the scheme hasn’t quite worked as intended, with over a third of households using it found to be earning over £50,000 and data showing it has been used by movers to upsize,” said Daniel Hegarty, CEO and founder of digital mortgage broker Habito.

“The new restrictions making it for first-time buyers only with regional price caps should provide a more targeted benefit to those who need it most.”

House building

Local authorities have been restricted from borrowing to build new council housing since the Thatcher era.

At this year’s Tory party conference, Theresa May announced plans to scrap the cap on council borrowing to build new housing, with 60 local authorities pledging an immediate drive to build thousands of homes under the new rules.

This new policy will come into effect today and “could well have a bigger impact on the housing crisis than any other measures mentioned in this Budget or those previously,” according to Philip Woolner, joint managing partner at Cheffins.

This extra borrowing has been calculated to add as much as £1bn to the deficit.

But the Local Government Association said that investing in social housing generates returned income through rents, while also creating savings in the huge annual housing benefit bill.

The Chancellor also pledged several measures to encourage house builders to build, including £653 million for partnerships with nine housing associations; money for neighbourhoods to allocate land for housing which can then be sold to local people at a discount; and £1 billion guarantees for smaller housebuilders from the British Business Bank.

He also added £500 million to the Housing Infrastructure Fund, which local councils can apply to for money to help with building.

The fund, which will increase to £5.5bn, pays for infrastructure like roads and power supplies for new housing.

Mr Hammond said the additional money would help build 650,000 homes.

Stamp duty: shared-ownership buyers

Higher stamp duty charges for the country’s most expensive homes have been blamed by some for the stagnation of the property market, particularly in London and the South East.

But Mr Hammond mostly left the current thresholds as they are, apart from correcting an anomaly in the way first-time buyers of shared-ownership homes were charged.

Now, buyers of shared-ownership homes priced up to £500,000 will be exempt from the tax, a saving which has also been implemented retrospectively for any shared-ownership buyers since November 2017.

“By their nature, first-time buyers purchasing shared-ownership homes are struggling to take that all important first step onto the housing ladder. Making shared-ownership home buyers – who are only buying a share of the property – eligible for the first time buyer stamp duty exemption is a welcome move and makes complete sense,” said Paula Higgins, chief executive, HomeOwners Alliance.

“The fact Mr Hammond has promised to apply this retrospectively and put right the wrong for all those shared-ownership scheme home buyers since the last Budget is again great to see.”

Other commentators looking towards the higher end of the market were not so impressed. Rory O’Neill, head of residential at estate agent Carter Jonas, says: “In failing to address stamp duty for a fourth consecutive year, the Chancellor has missed another opportunity to inject much needed momentum into the market.”

“As the primary hurdle facing residential property, stamp duty fees over the £937,500 threshold coupled with the three per cent levy on second or multiple home purchases are grinding the market to a halt.

“While the number of first-time buyers has reached an 11-year high, at present, the market is so congested in the middle that it has reached an impasse.”

Stamp duty: hike for foreign buyers

Theresa May recently announced a stamp study surcharge of between one and three per cent for non-residents buying homes in England and Northern Ireland.

It has now been confirmed that a consultation will be published in January, based on a one per cent levy imposed on foreign buyers.

This will be in addition to the three per cent surcharge on second homes and buy-to-let properties, which came into effect from April 2016.

It is estimated that 13 per cent of new-build London homes have been bought by non-residents.

The revenue raised will be used to support a government strategy to tackle homelessness which aims to end rough sleeping by 2027.

However, some property market commentators are concerned the additional tax will undermine investment in new housing in London and across the UK.

Tax relief for landlords

Currently, if someone sells their home, they do not have to pay capital gains tax, provided they have been living there – a rule known as private residence relief.

At the moment, sellers can have lived away from their property for 18 months before the final sale date and still qualify for the tax exemption, to reflect the difficulty of selling homes in the current property market.

In the Budget the Chancellor announced this would be reduced to nine months from April 2020.

The Budget also set out changes to lettings relief, where up to £40,000 per owner is exempt from capital gains tax if the landlord has lived in the property.

Once the changes come into effect in April 2020, lettings relief will be limited to homes where the landlord lives in the property with the tenant.

Source: Prudence Ivey 

Multi-family homes, student housing top global real estate investments

Investors looking at residential property are increasingly looking at alternative real estate such as multi-family housing, retirement housing and student markets, according to new research.

Global student housing investment volumes in particular have risen 87 per cent in the last five years, says the study from international real estate firm Savills.

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According to Propertywire.com, the study explains that the maturity of the British and US markets, coupled with low provision yet high demand for purpose-built student accommodation, mean that southern European cities offer the strongest opportunities for new investment in the sector over the coming year.

But global need for multi-family, co-living and retirement housing offers opportunities across all jurisdictions, and are particularly under invested asset classes in the UK, it also points out.

Indeed, the provision of PBSA is highest in the UK where 27 per cent of all students can be accommodated, and lowest in southern Europe. In Italy, Europe’s fourth largest student market, the national provision rate is less than five per cent.

Analysing city by city data from StudentMarketing, an independent provider of student housing and micro living research and data, Savills has identified that provision is lowest in Rome, with a student population of 220,500, but only 6,500 student beds, a provision rate of just three per cent, followed by Porto at 3.5 per cent, Florence at 3.8 per cent, Barcelona at 4.9 per cent and Madrid at 5.7 per cent.

These cities therefore offer the best immediate opportunities for investors, says Savills, as many have strong international student populations, indicating a solid supply base, and high average PBSA rents.

“Italy’s proving to be an attractive market for investors where supply is low and the existing quality of accommodation is dated,” said Marcus Roberts, director of residential capital markets for Europe at Savills.

Source: Punch Newspaper

Land administration: Surveyors urged to embrace modern technologies

To improve on land administration, surveyors have been urged to embrace and use modern mapping technologies. Modern surveying technologies, according to surveying experts, make the issuance of Certificates of Occupancy as well as obtaining survey plans easy by removing bureaucracy.

The call was made at the 2018 Mandatory Continuous Professional Development Programme of the Nigerian Institution of Surveyors, Lagos State branch, where members were encouraged to use modern surveying instruments and data processing software packages for quality land administration.

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The Principal Consultant of a surveying firm, Sacredion, Mr Chika Okorocha, said the Lagos State Government had commenced the installation of Continuously Operating Reference Station network across the states to improve data collection for land administration.

Okorocha, who spoke on ‘Positional accuracy through Global Navigation Satellite System’, said there should be sensitisation and training in the surveying community on the technology for improved practice.

He stated, “The Lagos State Government is currently changing the system of land administration and that will involve the CORS network across the state. This tracks satellite continuously; it is important to know that without accurate data of survey, there will be overlapping boundaries.

“Residents should also know that what the state is doing will make the issuance of Certificates of Occupancy easy. Currently, there are a lot of bureaucratic processes involved in getting the C-of-O but once the system is concluded, it will be easier and survey plans will be filed accurately. We will no longer have overlapping survey plans.”

Okorocha said the CORS stations were permanent Global Positioning System and GNSS receivers that the state government had started mounting in different locations in the state such as Badagry, Ikorodu, Ikeja and Amuwo Odofin for high accuracy positioned data that could be used in land administration, agriculture and construction.

“No matter the type of surveying you are involved in, you need the GNSS technology.”

The Vice-Chairman, NIS, Lagos State branch and Chairman of the MCPD Organising Committee, Mr Kolade Kasim, said the introduction of the GNSS would make land administration in Lagos and the country at large faster and eliminate sharp practices.

The Chairman, Association of Private Practising Surveyors of Nigeria, Lagos State branch, Mr Olufemi Odewale, noted that modern technologies would add value to investment and help residents to get good returns on their investments in land.

He stated, “The age we are in is technology-driven and any profession that wants to impact the populace should always be in tune with technological advancements.

“Lagos State has always pioneered different innovations in terms of technology and its advancement to the profession of surveying in the state and the country in general. What we are talking about now will add value to investment in land.”

Odewale also urged members of the public to cultivate the habit of engaging professionals when investing in land.

The Chairman, NIS, Lagos State branch, Mr Adesina Adeleke, said the MCPD was developed about 20 years ago to help surveyors update their knowledge and technical skills.

Adeleke stated that the theme of the MCPD, ‘Improving geospatial deliverables through modern mapping technologies’, would open new areas of opportunities for surveyors.

Source:  Maureen Ihua Maduenyi

Abu Dhabi to host 10th World Urban Forum in 2020

The United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) has signed an agreement for the city of Abu Dhabi to host the tenth session of the World Urban Forum (WUF10) in 2020.This will be the first time an Arab country hosts the landmark Forum. WUF10 will be convened by UN-Habitat and jointly organized with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation (MOFAIC) and Abu Dhabi Department of Urban Planning and Municipalities (DPM), along with partners including the Abu Dhabi Department of Culture and Tourism, Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation and the General Secretariat of the Executive Council.Established in 2001, WUF is the world’s premier gathering on urban issues.

UN-Habitat, the convener of the Forum, is the United Nations focal point for sustainable urban development working for an inclusive and prosperous urban future.

United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director of UN-Habitat Maimunah Mohd Sharif congratulated Abu Dhabi for accepting the challenge of taking the World Urban Forum to the next level and commended the city authorities and the United Arab Emirate Government for outstanding coordination and timely preparations being jointly undertaken towards hosting the milestone event.

“Like so many cities in the region, Abu Dhabi is undergoing rapid and transformative urbanization and we commend the focus on sustainability shown by the Government. This open, inclusive Forum, with its high-level participation, is a unique opportunity to focus on how urban development can be implemented in a sustainable way around the world,” she concluded.

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The Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Department of Urban Planning and Municipalities H.E Falah Al Ahbabi said Abu Dhabi was extremely pleased to have been chosen to host the Tenth session of the World Urban Forum particularly as it marks the first time an Arab nation has hosted this global event.

Al Ahbabi noted that hosting the World Urban Forum in 2020 provides the opportunity to advance on putting the UAE firmly on the path to sustainable development and recognizing the young country’s achievements in what will be the 49th year since the union of our emirates.

“We are delighted and eager for the opportunity to discuss solutions that are being tested by pioneering cities around the world while also showcasing our city, country and the renowned Emirati hospitality,” he said.

WUF10, which is expected to bring together more than 20,000 delegates from more than 150 countries, will certainly lead to new partnerships and actions to meet the challenges of urban areas. Key topics including human capital, resource management, education and culture, mobility, data and much more, will be discussed during the conference.

The Forum plays a key role in implementing the New Urban Agenda, a framework unanimously adopted at the United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development (Habitat III), laying out how cities should be planned and managed to best promote sustainable development.

Abu Dhabi strongly supports the New Urban Agenda as it represents its own ideal for creating a sustainable Emirate by preserving and enriching its physical and cultural identity, while improving quality of life for all its residents.

Whiteplains British School files appeal over alleged agreement forgery

The proprietor of Whiteplains British School has approached the Court of Appeal to challenge the judgment of the lower court over the tripartite legal mortgage agreement with First Bank of Nigeria Plc.

The school has been in the news lately over alleged attempt by the bank to take over the school, following the judgment given by Justice Binta Nyako of the federal high court, Abuja, on the crises.

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The court in the said judgment, asked the parties to appoint a receiver while they make effort to reach an agreement on how to resolve the crises without resorting to closing the school in the interest of students. But the owners of the school however alleged that the bank acted in the contrary by attempting to shut down the school and disrupt academic activities.

The school also insisted that the documents used in obtaining the judgment were forged, and as such, has approached the Court of Appeal to challenge the judgment.
No date has been fixed for hearing on the appeal marked, CA/A/831/2018.

Meanwhile, the proprietor of the school, Dr. Francis Nwufoh, has distanced himself from the purported tripartite legal mortgage agreement on the N690million loan obtained by the school in 2014 from First Bank plc. Nwufoh revealed that the signatories to the tripartite agreement have all deposed to separate affidavits, denying knowledge of the said agreement, as according to him, documents used in preparing the purported agreement were allegedly forged.

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He informed that with the said tripartite agreement, the bank secured an order of court to appoint a receiver in a bid to take over the school. Meanwhile, the school has filed a motion on-notice, asking the court to set aside the earlier judgment on the ground that it was allegedly obtained fraudulently.

11 burnt in Abuja restaurant gas explosion


Eleven people on Wednesday in Abuja suffered varying degrees of burns from a gas explosion that occurred at Rosy Restaurant Area 11.

The victims who were immediately taken to Asokoro general hospital suffered some 40 to 50 degree of burns.

A pregnant woman, who simply identified herself as Ajayi who works at the restaurant, said that they were all going about their normal businesses when the gas suddenly exploded.

Ajayi, who is three month pregnant, said that she needed to go for scanning to ascertain the condition of her baby.

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Housing News reports that the explosion affected her face, legs and hands.

She was, however, attended to by the hospital management to know if she would be transferred to where she would be given a better treatment.

Rachael Awu, another attendant at the restaurant and one of the victims of the explosion, said she was attending to her duty when the explosion rocked the restaurant

“I was serving customers and I went to pack meal, as I looked back I just heard the explosion.

“The fire started from the back of the restaurant where one of the cylinders was stationed. I was facing outside and when I tried to look back, I saw fire from the explosion.

”One of the gas cylinder was stationed outside the restaurant in the open space, and there is another gas inside where we used to put meat.

She said that the gas cylinder outside was the one that aided the fire which ignited the gas cylinder inside the restaurant.

Another victim, who simply identified himself as Promise, said that the explosion was sudden, adding that he was attending to customers when he heard a loud noise.

Housing News reports that Promise suffered some degrees of injuries on his two hands and a partial burn on his face.

“I went to carry sachet water when the gas exploded; as I turned back the fire was already burning my hands.”

Rose Kenu, a worker at the restaurant whose face was affected by the explosion, said what happened was beyond explanation.

“I was in the restaurant when the gas exploded, we were cooking inside the restaurant because that is where the kitchen is located.”

Dr Aminu Mile, the Acting Managing Director, Health and Human Services Secretary (HHSS), Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) while on a visit to the victim, said the circumstances surrounding the explosion would be unravelled.

He said that the HHSS was already doing his own part to help victims of the explosion, adding that everything would be done to help the victims.

Dr Nnabuchi Chidi, Acting managing Director, Asokoro Hospital said that the hospital would refer some of the victims to the National Hospital.

He said that 11 of them were brought to the hospital and the hospital would do everything to ensure they are stabilised.

Source: NAN

AUHF to Set the Stage for Affordable Housing in Africa


The opportunity for African countries in supporting the growth and development of their affordable housing industries is immense and transformative

The 34th African Union for Housing Finance (AUHF) conference (www.AUHFConcerence.com) and Annual General Meeting will take place for the first time in Abidjan, Cote D’Ivoire between 23 & 25 October 2018.

This year’s theme: Building Africa’s Housing Financing Chain will be unpacked by the leading figures from Africa in one of the primary economies of the continent’s fastest growing economic regions – the West Africa Monetary Union (UEMOA).

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While the conference will provide stakeholders with an opportunity to examine the unique regional context, the three-day conference and AGM is pan-African in focus with more than 61-member institutions and several key partners from across the continent coming together to address the challenges and opportunities in Africa’s housing finance chain.


Key Partners

This year’s partners include: The Centre for Affordable Housing Finance in Africa (CAHF), the African Development Bank (AfDB), and Caisse Regional de Refinacement Hypethecaire (CRRH).

Providing affordable housing opportunities to Africa’s rapidly urbanising population is a major policy driver for African governments and an opportunity for both local and international investors and developers. Recent estimates by the World Bank suggest that more than 1 billion people will live in African cities by 2040, more than double the current urban population on the continent. The capacity of Africa’s cities to respond to this challenge, and to turn the demand for affordable housing into an opportunity for stimulating local economic growth and development, is critically dependent on an efficient flow of finance.

African Growth

It’s against this rapidly urbanising landscape that this year’s AUHF conference will explore the key links in the housing financing chain: the finance instruments that support each link in the housing delivery chain, and the funding instruments that make these possible.

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Mortgage Lending

As the conference takes place in a leading regional economy, Cote D’Ivoire, and hub for the West Africa Monetary Union (UEMOA), one of the three-day conference’s focal points is Building UEMOA’s housing finance sector. Mortgage lending is a key issue, and Director General of the UEMOA mortgage refinance institution, the Caisse Regionale de Refinnacement Hypothécaire de l’UEMOA Christian Agossa will deliver a keynote address on this key focus area.

According to Mr. Agossa, mortgage lending products need to be well-targeted to the demand side; however, adjustments to product design, including mechanisms to underwrite informal incomes, savings-linked and micro-mortgage products, and pension-backed lending will expand the potential market for mortgage lending dramatically in affordable housing.

The affordable housing challenge promise to be a significant driver of economic activity, says one of the key stakeholders of this year’s summit, the executive director for the Centre for Affordable Housing Finance’s (CAHF) Kecia Rust.

The Economic Opportunity

On an annual basis, CAHF analyses the most affordable homes which are being built on the continent. In Nigeria, Millard Fuller has developed a starter house for a total cost of $7,500. If this were available for purchase with a mortgage across the continent, the potential effective demand would translate to about 52 million houses. A simple “back of the envelope” calculation suggests that this could generate $400 Billion in economic activity just with the construction of the housing units and related infrastructure and provide more than 1.3 million jobs in the construction sector alone. The opportunity for African countries in supporting the growth and development of their affordable housing industries is immense and transformative.

Investors are clearly interested. Although still relatively small in relation to the potential opportunity, investment in residential real estate and in affordable housing in particular, is growing. Reports of targeted, local investments are increasingly finding their way into the local media, and many of these stories will be shared at the conference. Development Finance Institutions, as well as international and local investors all working towards maximising the impact investment potential that the numbers suggest. The 34th Annual AUHF conference will give them a platform for the growing number of affordable housing stakeholders to accelerate their conversation.

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Policy Drivers

This interest is encouraging to policy makers, and many are responding with supportive rhetoric and explicit programmes. President Kenyatta’s commitment to see the construction of half a million affordable homes in Kenya is one example; governments in Nigeria, Uganda, Côte d’Ivoire, Rwanda, South Africa, and others have all expressed a commitment to affordable housing in the past year. Rust makes the point “Governments have a critical role to play in land assembly and the awarding of development rights that support affordability; infrastructure investment must accommodate the expected densities and should ultimately be funded over a longer time frame than the housing itself. The capacity of developers to deliver truly affordable housing at scale is another issue that will require policy support and private sector construction financing. And then there is the question of end user financing, the cost of capital, and the trust lenders have in the underlying security. These are all policy and regulatory issues on which the government will need to focus – beyond simply visioning a magic number.”

Top Thought Leaders

With more than 200 delegates and stakeholders travelling to the summit in October, some of the confirmed regional speakers include Mr Christian Agossa, Directeur Général at Caisse Régionale de Refinancement Hypothécaire de l’UEMOA, Mr. Stefan Nallemtaby, Director Financial Sector Development Department African Development Bank, the Chief Executive of the Federal Bank of Nigeria Arc. Ahmed Musa Dangiwa, Kehinde Ogundimu, acting chief executive officer of the Nigerian Mortgage Refinancing Company – the summit is a strategic platform for the continent’s affordable housing financing thought leaders to build a more robust housing finance value chain.

As Mr. Nalletamby of the African Development bank stated, “We will have a robust discussion on the affordable housing value chain and Abidjan, as one of Africa’s high growth economies is the perfect host city for this conference and AGM”.


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