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FHA SETS ASIDE 30% HOUSES FOR LOW-INCOME EARNERS

By NBF News
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… Delivers houses under PPP in 6 states
By YINKA KOLAWOLE
The Federal Housing Authority (FHA) is to dedicate thirty percent of housing units in all its new estates to low income earners as a way of ensuring that all cadres of the society are able to own houses.

Managing Director, FHA, Mr. Terver Gemade, who disclosed this in Abuja, also said that 50 percent of houses in such estates would be set aside for allocation to medium income earners. According to him, FHA took the step as a way of offering succour to such categories of Nigerians who would otherwise not be able to buy houses at the prevailing market rates.

He said FHA was handicapped in doing more for now due to financial constraints having been taken off government budgetary allocation for over 10 years. He said the authority would be better positioned to serve the underprivileged when the social housing policy being pursued by the Minister of Lands, Housing and Urban Development comes into effect.

Gemade declared that the public-private partnership (PPP) deal between the FHA and 27 private developers signed last year has started yielding results, with a set of new housing units in six major cities ready for commissioning.

He said that the completed housing units under the schemes, in respect of which a memorandum of understanding was endorsed between both parties, will soon be allocated to prospective buyers. According to him, the new housing estates are located in Osogbo, Osun State; Odukpani, Cross River State; Gombe, Gombe State; Goningora, Kaduna State; Abesan, Lagos State and; Makurdi in Benue State.

The FHA boss noted that the completed housing units were in the first phase of the various estates, adding that work had already commenced on the second phase under the PPP arrangement, at an estimated cost of over N4.5 billion. He further noted that no fewer than eight developers, 200 contractors and subcontractors are working on the various projects.

Among the completed estates, Gemade said Osogbo has 100 units of two bedroom bungalows and three bedroom semi-detached houses, while the estate at Abesan, Lagos, consists of 78 luxury flats in 13 blocks of six flats each; Odukpani, 86 units of two and three bedrooms bungalows; Gombe, 80 units and; Makurdi also has 80 units.

He said the deal stipulates that FHA has exclusive right of post sale management of the estate, issuance of allocation papers, issuance of title documents, naming of the estate, numbering of the houses, collection of capital development levies and ground rents as well as any other such charges that it may introduce from time to time. He further stated that for effective management of the estates, the parties to the deal have agreed to put in place sustainable facility management structures on completion of construction work, while they shall also decide and put in place sustainable facility management on agreed terms and conditions.

The FHA boss said work had also reached advanced stages on the other partnership estates in Makurdi (Benue State), Yenagoa (Bayelsa State) and Awka (Anambra State), expressed satisfaction with the pace of work. According to him, each of the estates is supported by world-class infrastructure such as roads, electricity, independent water supply, street lights and drainages.

Apart from Abuja where the FHA had secured about 1,000 hectares of land for a new town development, Gemade said the authority would in the next few months move to new locations across the country's six geo-political zones with a view to taking housing to Nigerians wherever they lived.