The Commissioner for Housing in Lagos State, Mr. Moruf Akinderu-Fatai, has revealed plans to build ten new housing estates in the next 24 months to address the enormous housing needs of Lagosians. He disclosed this during a forum organized by the Nigerian Institute of Building (NIOB) in Ikeja. Akinderu-Fatai explained that the new schemes were already in the pipeline, and the state government had completed nineteen housing estates so far.
The commissioner stated that the housing projects were funded through direct budgetary allocations and joint ventures with the private sector. He added that the state government had created a conducive atmosphere for private sector participation in housing delivery through various initiatives such as digitization of land titling to reduce bottlenecks in land documentation.
According to Akinderu-Fatai, the state government had also engaged an average of 170,657 persons per year in the last three years and retrained and certified building artisans under its Master Craftsman program.
He emphasized the need for the builders to focus on mass production of homes, involving multilevel or vertical homes that are well-built and safe. He also urged private investors to consider the long-term gains in rental schemes as opposed to outright sales, pointing out that 80.7% of Lagosians were tenants and needed decent accommodations.
Akinderu-Fatai drew the attention of builders and investors to the old and declining estates located at all divisions of the state, saying they needed to be regenerated to yield more homes. He stated that if rebuilt or regenerated, they could yield more homes than the existing number and create more opportunities for all actors in the built sector.
The commissioner stressed the importance of safety and ethical practices in the building industry and urged all stakeholders to work together to achieve the goal of providing affordable homes for Lagosians.