ASO Savings to commission N10bn Karsana Estate

ASO Savings and Loans Plc. with its partner, Global High Property Development Company is set to commission the N10 billion ASO Garden Estate, Karsana, Abuja.
The Residential Estate, conceived by Global High Property Development Company was totally financed by ASO Saving and Loans Plc.

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ASO Garden Estate consist of 249 units made up of 129 units of 2 bedroom apartments, 117 units of 3 bedroom apartments and 3 units of 4 bedroom terrace houses and associated external works. Total construction cost of the Estate is put at N10 billion.
The estate, which is located on a 5 hectare site after Gwarinpa along the Kubwa Express Road beside the Papal Grand within the Karsana East District, is part of the Abuja Phase IV.

Risikatu Ladi Ahmed, Executive Director, Corporate Services Directorate of the Bank, in a statement said the successful completion of the Estate lends a further testimony to ASO Savings’ vision to be the Mortgage bank of choice in Nigeria in terms of client service and housing provision for the citizens.
She said: “The successful completion of this project in spite of the daunting challenges due to the difficult operating environment attests to the doggedness of our management team and our never say fail spirit no matter how intimidating the odds are. We are determined to continue to make the expectations of our stakeholders.”


The 249 units ASO Garden Estate, Karsana, which is billed for commissioning the second week of April, is fully subscribed.

NHP Begins Construction Of Cheaper Brick Houses To Suit Tropical Climate

The National Housing Programme (NHP) said it had designed and produced energy efficient brick houses to suit the tropical climate in the country.

The Zonal Director, North Central Zone of NHP, Mr Val Nwaimo said this after inspecting some pilot brick buildings at the NHP site in Minna, Niger State.

According to him, the laterite used in producing the brick houses is non-conductive, thereby preventing heat within the buildings.

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The brick housing project is a pilot in the on-going housing programme, with sites in Niger, Ekiti, Enugu and Ondo States.

“We have seen the various building types especially the pilot building which we want to grow in Nigeria if it gains acceptability of Nigerians.

“Considering the tropical nature of Nigeria, we need materials or buildings that are energy efficient because what makes rooms hot is the outdoor temperature.

“If you have materials that are non-conductive, they don’t conduct heat or transmit heat inside the building; whether there is fan or not, the atmosphere will remain conducive in the building.

“That is what this pilot building is all about.’’

Nwaimo explained that the pilot project was a sample to check its acceptability.

“If people like the brick houses, then we can produce them en-mass for Nigerians.

“The brick is made from a mixture of Laterite (called red earth or clay) with cement.

“The house remains cool when the weather is hot and it is also cost effective while block houses always allow heat to penetrate, in addition to being costly.

“Another advantage of a brick house is that the outer part of the building is not painted; it remains natural but block houses require painting both inside and outside.

“These are cost reducing benefits for using brick houses,’’ he said.


Nwaimo said his visit was to assess the progress made, infrastructure provided to compliment the housing units and the impact of the project on national economic growth and Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in Minna.

He thanked the people and government of Niger state for their support and commended the federal team in charge of the project on the quality of work on site.

The Team Leader, Niger state NHP, Mr Ibrahim Bala explained that limited facilities were added to ensure affordability of each housing unit by low income earners.

“We have 20 indigenous contractors in addition to skilled and unskilled artisans on site working on 52 units of two bedrooms, 24 units of three bedrooms and four units of one bedroom.

“After you have bought a unit, you can add the facilities that you want because there is space created for such.

“We are currently working on the cost of the houses and very soon, you will see the advert.

Bala said that work on basic amenities and infrastructure would commence as soon as funds were made available while the project would be completed in the next five months.

Mr John Adekunle, Chairman of site contractors, said the project contractors had maintained high standard of materials.

“I also ensure that artisans in the state, including 50 community workers are engaged on site, because one of the objectives of this project is for the community to benefit maximally,’’ he said.

NBA gives Lagos seven-day ultimatum to reverse Land Use Charge

Oladimeji Ramon

The Nigerian Bar Association, Ikeja branch, has given the Lagos State Government a seven-day ultimatum to reverse its recently introduced hike on Land Use Charge.

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The Chairman of the NBA branch, Mr. Adesina Ogunlana, disclosed in a statement on Wednesday that the association was set to embark on a mass protest tagged, “Hell Tax Must Go,” against the “Pharaoic tax regime.”

Ogunlana said the NBA was strongly opposed to the LUC, which it described as an “excessive and arbitrary tax regime” calculated at turning Lagos State into a “toxic environment and a living hell” for Lagosians.

He said the association would give Governor Akinwunmi Ambode till next Monday to retrace his steps on the LUC, failing which its members would hit the streets on Tuesday.

NHP: Niger Govt. Pledges Additional 150 Hectares Of Land

The Niger Government has pledged to give additional 150 hectares of land to support the second phase of the Federal Government’s National Housing Programme (NHP) in the state.

Mr Kudu Aliyu, Director, Public Building, Niger State Ministry of Works, made the pledge on Wednesday when some officials of the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing visited the NHP site in Minna.

Aliyu commended the level of work done so far at the housing construction project site, adding that the programme was paramount for national development.
“The state government is pleased with the ongoing housing construction, most of the structures are completed, some are in plaster finishing while some are completely roofed.

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“We are ready to donate between 150 to 200 hectares of land for the second phase of the programme,” he said.
The project, which is 70 per cent completed, is located at ‘Three Arms Zone,’ Eastern Bypass, Metumbi Area, Niger.

Hajiya Habiba Ahmed, General Manager, Niger State Urban Development Board (NSUDB), also assured the officials that the state government would be ready and glad to give out additional land for a second phase of the project due to its benefits.

According to her, in acquiring land, the state government always considers compensation because one cannot take away people’s land meant for their livelihood without compensating them.

She noted that the state government donated the present land free of any encumbrance, adding that the land was initially acquired by the state government and compensations were paid to the customary people.


She explained that the state government endorsed the NHP as a laudable project hence it ceded its acquired land to the Federal Government to execute the project.

The NHP is a vision of the Federal Government and anchored by the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing in collaboration with the 36 state governments

Regulating the Mortgage Industry in Nigeria

It is no longer news that Nigeria has a huge housing deficit, which experts have put at above 17 million units that would require an annual investment of billions of naira for the next 10 years to bridge. Yet there is no coherent housing policy in place to suggest the country is matching towards bridging this housing gap.

Anyone, who drives around Abuja or the Federal Capital Territory, would undoubtedly get a false sense of surplus housing in the country. Several residential estates have sprung up in the city in the last five years, but estate agents will tell you many of these houses are vacant because they are unaffordable to the low and middle-income Nigerians who require housing.

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This is why the recent House of Representatives’ hearing on the repeal of FMBN Act Cap F16 which includes the amendment of NHF Act is coming at a good time. The bill seeks to reform the bank, strengthen its board and ensure better regulation and professionalism in the mortgage industry.

The heavy involvement of stakeholders in the attempt to repeal and re-enact the FMBN Act as well as the NHF Act, and consequently reform the bank is particularly instructive, and suggests there is a consensus in the industry and the need for an urgent and comprehensive reform to take the industry to the next level.

Credit must be given to the management of the FMBN under the leadership of Ahmed Dangiwa, the Managing Director, for involving all the critical stakeholders in the push for reform. A lot of hard work and consultation went on behind the scene to secure the buy-in of stakeholders and harmonise positions. Securing the buy-in of the Nigeria Labour Congress, Trade Union Congress, Mortgage Bankers Association of Nigeria, Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria, Council of Registered Builders of Nigeria, Nigeria Institute of Estate Surveyors and Valuers and the Federal Government Staff Housing Loans Board, among others is a rare feat that must be commended.

Getting a practical, workable consensus among stakeholders is critical to the success of any reform of the FMBN and the mortgage industry. The management of FMBN have realised this and have gone ahead to ensure proper consultation in the industry. There is no doubt that it was this groundwork among stakeholders in the industry that ensured their active participation at the public hearing conducted by the House Committee on Housing in December 2017. It is cheering news that the report of the Committee was laid before the House on Thursday, 22nd February, 2018.


The new bill also seeks the establishment of the Institute of Mortgage Brokers and Lenders of Nigeria (IMBLN) to ensure better regulation of the industry. Such an institute would provide better regulatory framework, eliminate fraudsters, remove speculators, entrench sanity and decency. It will also provide training programmes for practitioners in the sector to promote professionalism.

But most importantly, is the provision that would ensure better recapitalisation for the bank and reposition it to be able to provide affordable housing to low and middle-income persons. At present the FMBN has a meagre capital base of N5 billion despite the fact that the Central Bank of Nigeria and the Nigeria Social Insurance Trust Fund are shareholders.

Stakeholders in the industry are demanding that the Central Bank of Nigeria be divested from ownership of the FMBN and that it should be wholly owned by the federal government to rid its operation of unnecessary interference and also so that the CBN can concentrate on its regulatory role. Such interference is a clog in the wheel of efficient and effective operations of the bank.

If the bank is to deliver on its mandate to provide affordable housing, the stakeholders and the management of the bank are right on track to demand better recapitalisation. While the stakeholders are asking for a recapitalisation of N1 trillion, the MD of the bank is asking for a minimum share capital of N500 billion. Whichever way the pendulum swings, it would be a great leap for the bank and for the housing industry in the country if the bank’s capital gets such a boost.

It would increase the liquidity of the bank and it would then be able to provide affordable housing finance at single digit interest to Nigerians, particularly the low and middle-income groups.

There is a lot to cheer if the signal from the ruling All Progressive Party is anything to go buy. At the 11th Abuja International Housing Show, National Chairman of the party, Chief John Odiegie-Oyegun said Nigeria was set to commit about N1 trillion to the housing sector through a public private partnership arrangement. He said the scheme was part of the new Social Housing Programme of the government that is part of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) launched recently.

The FMBN that would be re-established if the new bill sails through would be able to play a central role in delivering on this ERGP mandate. Recent events have shown that a stronger government mortgage bank is critical to delivering affordable housing.

Private estate developers who borrow funds at commercial bank rates cannot deliver affordable housing to the low and average income Nigerians. All the private estates that litter the FCT are glaring examples of how difficult it would be to deliver affordable housing without recapitalising the FMBN. There are houses in Abuja which have remained empty for years because they are out of the reach of majority of people needing housing.

Recapitalisation will afford the FMBN the ability to provide long term credit to other mortgage institutions to deliver affordable housing instead of the current position where the bank can’t even finance its primary customers. Recapitalising the bank as demanded by stakeholders is the surest way to turn around the fortunes of the bank and re-position it for better service delivery.

The management of FMBN has done an impressive job of getting all stakeholders to be on the same page on the way forward, and it is the reason why the House hearing was successful. Some of the stakeholders I spoke to commended the management of the bank for its patriotism and professionalism. “It is rare to find the management of a government institution and its stakeholders on the same page on critical industry issues,” said a member of the Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria after the hearing.
If the National Assembly is able to perfect the new FMBN bill and ensure its passage with all the stakeholder input, Nigeria is well on its way to delivering affordable housing.

– Suleiman wrote in from Abuja

Government to implement land banks to tackle housing deficit

The Ghana Real Estate Developers’ Association (GREDA) wants government to strictly abide by its promise to implement the proposed land bank policy to address the rising housing deficit by the end of the year.

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Under the policy, custodians of lands such as traditional leaders will offer available concessions to estate developers to be developed and repaid under agreed and flexible terms.

This initiative is also expected to address the huge housing deficit facing the country,estimated at 1.7 million.

Deputy Minister for Works and Housing, Eugene Boakye Antwi says his outfit is liaising with regional ministers and chiefs to ensure this is achieved.

“It’s to make land accessible to would be investors and to also bring equity into the system. We don’t see why somebody should bring his money from a foreign bank, but any attempt to support with land gets the investor entangled in a legal confrontation. That is we these investors portions to develop,” he explained.

Mr. Antwi who spoke at a CEO’s Breakfast meeting organized by the Ghana Real Estate Developers Association (GREDA), Mr. Antwi was also hopeful of rolling out the plan by the end of this year.hy we want to acquire the lands and when these investors come, then we can give

“We have sent out letters to the various regional ministers and chiefs. Some have responded favorably, while some are also working on it. It is work in progress; hopefully by the end of the year, we should give the housing industry players some favorable news,” he added.

Meanwhile GREDA who has been calling for the establishment of the land banks to mitigate land challenges in the country expressed optimism to the approach by the ministry.

Executive Secretary of GREDA, Sammy Amegayibor however says government must live up to its assurance and ensure the policy is implemented to enhance the efficiency of the housing sector.


“Land acquisition has been a hurdle and so we have called for the establishment of land banks. We have made this call on the minister long ago and we believe that is the number one solution to our land issues. If they acquire the land and hand over to us then we will remove this problem of litigation because we have properly acquired it,” Mr Amegayibor explained.

Sam Adeyemi: Land Use Act is a formula for mass poverty…it must go

Sam Adeyemi, senior pastor of Daystar Christian Centre, says Nigeria’s Land Use Act is a formula for mass poverty, and must be removed, for the country to unleash its potentials.

Speaking at The Platform on Saturday, about “unleashing potentials for wealth creation”, Adeyemi said “the elite class makes it difficult, for example, for you to own land, which is the baseline for wealth creation”.

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“When it takes you five years to change the ownershipof landed property to your name at the land registry, how do you derive economic value for it?” Adeyemi questioned.

“You own land, they say you cant own what is under it, they sell what is under it and then spend the money on themselves. You deposit money in banks, and the banks won’t loan you the money; why are you putting your money in the banks?.

“If we want to prosper and see Nigeria develop, we must ensure some deep changes in our economic and political institutions. For the potential of the average Nigerian to create wealth to be unleashed, we need to be given property rights more easily.

“The Land Use Act must be removed from our constitution and must be thoroughly reviewed. To buy a landed property and to wait for years for governor’s consent or the certificate of occupancy, is a formula for mass poverty.”

Adeyemi ended his speech with a message of hope, courage, and prophecies for a developed Nigeria.

“I should say that I see a developed Nigeria. Whatever our situation is, it has been so in other parts of the world. In Europe, yes there was underdevelopment. The elite class ensured there were only a small group of people. They frustrated innovation,” he said.

He said the man who first designed a machine that could mass-produce textile was denied patent by Queen Elizabeth I, and was thrown into jail, when he spoke too much.


His offence, according to her, was that “she cannot afford to see him destroy the wealth of her citizens. Innovations can be destructive, they destroy old ways of making money”.

Reps query Mortgage Bank over N377m tax

By Musa Abdullahi Krishi
The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of the House of Representatives has queried the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) for not remitting taxes totalling N377.4 million to the Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS).

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The committee, acting on the report of the Auditor General of the Federation, said the amount was for both Value Added Tax (VAT) and withholding tax. The queries were raised in 2015.

Members of the panel, headed by Kingsley Chinda (PDP, Rivers) during a session with the Managing Director of the bank, Ahmed Musa Kangiwa, said the total amount not remitted could be more than N377.4m based on records of the bank.

Chinda observed that the amount when properly tabulated could be up to N500m. But Kangiwa said the money was paid via e-platform after the auditor general’s query was raised.

Deliberations on the query could not be concluded due to non-availability of some documents.

In another query, the committee also demanded details of three vehicles purchased at N49 million but sold to a former Managing Director of the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN), Gimba Ya’u Kumo at N4.9m.


The lawmakers were unhappy that the three vehicles, bought in 2015 were sold to the ex-MD in February 2016, when he was removed; at only 10 percent of the actual amount they were bought.

FCTA to clear illegal settlements as train operations begin

Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Muhammad Musa Bello has directed relevant FCT agencies to clear all illegal settlements and structures obstructing the FCT railway corridor.
Malam Bello gave this charge during a test ride of the train service recently.

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The minister, who was led by officials of China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC) Nigeria Ltd, also directed the FCDA to speed up work on the opening of access roads to the 12 railway stations.
The minister said this is to make it possible for passengers access the train services which will start in a few weeks’ time.
At the end of the inspection, the minister expressed satisfaction with the quality of work done and commended the contracts for a good job.

“We hope to open the stations for operations in the next few weeks and we don’t want a situation where the train would be competing for space with illegal structures and settlements,” the minister said.
The Minister also directed the Coordinator, Abuja Metropolitan Management Council (AMMC), Malam Shuaibu Umar to commence sensitization meetings with the stakeholders in the various railway corridors around Kukwaba, Dei Dei, Gwagwa, Kuchigoro and others, with a view to giving them enough time to vacate the railways corridors to create access ways.

The 12 completed stations are the Metro, Stadium, Wupa, Kukwaba 1 and 2, Gwagwa and Dei-Dei train stations. Others are the Idu, Bassanjiwa, Airport, Kagini, Bazango stations.

FG engages 20 indigenous contractors for N1.3b Sokoto housing estate

The federal government has engaged 20 indigenous contractors for the ongoing construction of 80 housing units at Kwannawa in Dange Shuni local government area of Sokoto state.
Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola disclosed this while in Sokoto to inspect some ongoing projects being executed by the federal government in the state.

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The minister said the essence of awarding the contract to the indigenous contractors was to boost their capacity, create jobs and boost the nation’s economy.
“As you can see all the contractors and their workers are local people; so also the food vendors at the site,” he said.
Fashola who was represented by the Director of Highway in charge of the northwest in the ministry, Engr. Busari Sikiru, expressed satisfaction with the level and quality of work done so far and the compliance to the local content executive order.
The contract which was awarded at the cost of N1.3 billion including infrastructures, the minister said would be completed in the next few weeks.
Fashola added that the second phase of the 500 housing unit would commence in the state soon.
Minister has also directed the contractor handling the 133.5 kilometres Sokoto-Jega road to complete the project before the raining season.
The road which also leads to the Southwest region was awarded in 2013 at the cost of N10.5 billion.
Inspecting the Tambuwal bye-pass road as part of the project, the Minister said the project had suffered delay due to poor budgetary allocation in the past.
He noted that the contractor had no reason not to complete the project on time because he was getting his money promptly.

In his remarks, the Comptroller of Works in Sokoto state, Engineer Anthony Animelu said their men were working with the contractors to ensure that all the materials used are of high and acceptable standard.
The Project Manager of Triacta Nigeria Limited, Engr. Walid Joude said all the materials being used for the project were locally sourced.

He added that over 20 Nigerians including three engineers were working for the company in line with the presidential executive order.


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