The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, and the Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, are divided over the state of housing in Nigeria. The duo expressed their divergent views at the inauguration of Woodhill Estate, in Abuja)
While Mustapha admitted that the housing deficit in the country, which is within the range of 16 million and 22 million, is unacceptably high, the former Governor of Lagos disagreed stating that the figures of the deficit hadn’t been ascertained and that there are houses available but no one is occupying the apartments.
“As we all know, Nigeria’s housing deficit has been said to range from 16 million to 22 million, the chairman (of FMBN) just said 17 million but that the minister will tell us where it is.
“However, whatever value it is, the housing deficit is unacceptably high. It is for this reason that the government is determined to provide affordable housing as a strategic imperative to guarantee the wellbeing of Nigerians,” the SGF said.
But Fashola insisted that there are houses available but no one is occupying the apartments. He stated that the housing deficit was more experienced in urban areas than what was recorded in rural areas. He said that does not mean that there are no houses available to occupy.
The estate, which was inaugurated by Fashola, has 154 housing comprising 80 units of two-bedroom semi-detached bungalows and 74 units of three-bedroom detached bungalows. The construction of the estate was in two phases.
Meanwhile, Nigeria has continued to face housing problems as the shortfall is being recorded in the face of rising population and costly apartments. According to a new report, Nigeria has a deficit of 16 million to 22 million housing units.
The shortfall has become a cause for concern among Nigerians as the gap between demand and supply widens. Apart from the fact that several Nigerians find it difficult to get a roof over their heads, experts urged the Federal Government to address the housing deficit menace.