Minister of Housing and Urban Development, Arc. Ahmed Musa Dangiwa has revealed that more than 80% of Nigerians lack access to mortgage financing, making homeownership an unaffordable dream for most.

The minister said this on Monday at the maiden edition of the Kaduna International Housing Exhibition, which held at the Yar’Adua Hall, in Kaduna.

According to the minister, statistics have shown that almost half of Nigeria’s population of over 201 million are poor and have weak purchasing power.

He added that the recent macro-economic challenges, including inflation have made things worse.

He said the major issue governments at all levels need to address in the desire to deliver sustainable housing to citizens, is the issue of affordability.

His words: “In fact, of the 43 million households, over 85 per cent have less than N1.1m purchasing power. Of this, 40 per cent (about 17.2 million households fall into the poverty income group and 47 per cent (about 20.2 million) fall into the low-income group.

“On the whole, statistics reveal that Nigeria is a low-income country as it has only 13 per cent of its population as middle class.

“The recent macro-economic challenges including inflation have made things worse.”

Dangiwa however said that against this backdrop, the President Bola Tinubu-led government, through the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development, is planning to establish a National Social Housing Fund (NSHF).

He explained that under the NSHF, the federal government is aiming to pull funds from the government budget, philanthropic organisations and well-meaning Nigerians to provide decent shelter for people with no income, low income and vulnerable citizens who cannot afford to own their homes.

He said: “Some of these units will be delivered at no cost. We have developed the concept which is undergoing review. Once concluded, we will present it to the Federal Executive Council (FEC) for approval and legislation.”ahmed

According to him, “Social housing is not only a necessity, but also a security insurance for the rich and the poor.

“Housing is capital intensive and the government has limited funds. We must find alternative collective avenues to help our brothers and sisters who are underprivileged; it is for our collective good.

“In this way, the underprivileged will know that we are one; that we are our brother’s keepers and that will help social cohesion, understanding and peace.

“This is because home ownership gives individuals a sense of belonging and a stake in the community.”

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He commended the Kaduna State Government for its practical, inclusive and pragmatic vision for housing delivery, part of which led the to the organization of the Kaduna International Housing Exhibition.

Speaking earlier, Governor Uba Sani, represented by Hadiza Balarabe, his deputy, said one of the priorities of his administration is the provision of affordable housing for citizens.

He said the state government is in partnership with local and international investors to frontally address the housing deficit.

The governor said the Qatar Charity, in partnership with the Kaduna State Government, is constructing mass housing for the less privileged.

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