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Business

FG guarantees mortgage loan to low income buyers at low interest rate

The implementation of the social housing plan estimated to cost over N400bn is expected to kick off next week.

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Solar, FG to slash import duties on tractors, buses, others in 2020 Finance Bill, Nigeria will not issue Eurobonds, says Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, FG guarantees mortgage loan to low income buyers at low interest rate, FG inaugurates gold refinery project in a landmark event

The Federal Government has disclosed that it would provide mortgage loan guarantees to low-income earners, on low-interest rates and collateral-free basis, in a bid to ensure that 300,000 housing units are delivered to the intended target, as part of the National Economic Sustainability Plan (NESP).

The implementation of the social housing plan estimated to cost over N400bn is expected to kick off next week, as early sites for the housing projects have now been identified, according to members of the Economic Sustainability Committee working on the project.

READ: UAE firm partners DBillions to address housing shortages in Lagos

It is reported that the Economic Sustainability Committee has already approved that the 1, 2, and 3 bedroom units cost as little as between N1.8 million to N2million under the plan, while financial assistance would be available for Nigerians to pay the mortgage.

Nairametrics had earlier reported that the Central Bank of Nigeria approved the sum of N200 billion, as a mortgage finance facility to the Family Homes Fund Limited and targeted at low-income earners. It was introduced to support the Federal Government’s Economic Sustainability Programme, and it’s meant to fast track the construction of 300,000 homes in the 36 states and Abuja.

READ: FG approves N3.9 billion variation in housing contracts, Abuja’s dam rehabilitation

Earlier in June, President Muhammadu Buhari and the Federal Executive Council approved a N2.3 trillion Economic Stimulus package, after the VP Yemi Osinbajo led Economic Sustainability Committee submitted its report. The President then directed the VP to supervise the implementation of the plan alongside other members of the committee.

Under the Social Housing program of the ESP, there would also be Rent to Own option, as part of the Buhari administration’s resolve to impact the common man in this social Housing plan is expected to generate about 1.5 million jobs and houses delivered to about 1.5 million Nigerian families.

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READ: CBN approves N200 billion housing loan for 300,000 households at 5% per annum

Already, sites for early start projects have been identified in all the 6 geo-political zones in addition to the FCT. The sites include those in Ekiti and Ogun in the Southwest; Enugu and Abia in the Southeast; Delta and Edo in the Southsouth; Yobe and Bauchi in the Northeast; Kaduna and Katsina in the Northwest; and Nasarawa and Plateau in the Northcentral. Sites have also been identified in Abuja.

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READ: Industry Group set to host a national dialogue on taxation and developing the non-oil sectors

The CBN has already committed to a N200 billion facility, to kickstart the social housing projects, with a guarantee by the FG under the Finance Ministry at about 5%. The implementing agency, Family Homes Fund Ltd, an agency under the Federal Ministry of Finance has already mobilized thousands of Cooperative groups across the country, who will participate in the social Housing plan as main warehouse agents and mobilize low-income buyers.

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Chike Olisah is a graduate of accountancy with over 15 years working experience in the financial service sector. He has worked in research and marketing departments of three top commercial banks. Chike is a senior member of the Nairametrics Editorial Team. You may contact him via his email- [email protected]

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    Business

    JAMB bans use of email by candidates for UTME, DE registration

    JAMB has announced that candidates for the UTME and Direct Entry will no longer be required to provide their email addresses at the point of registration.

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    The Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has announced that candidates for the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) and Direct Entry will no longer be required to provide their email addresses at the point of registration.

    The new adjustment is to protect candidates from various forms of manipulation and distortion of their personal details by some fraudulent cyber café operators.

    The Registrar of JAMB, Prof. Is-haq Oloyede, who made the disclosure while addressing newsmen at the board’s headquarters on Wednesday in Bwari, Abuja, said the change, would take effect from Thursday, April 15, 2021.

    What the JAMB Registrar is saying

    Oloyede said, “They gain access to profiles of these candidates under the pretense of creating an email address for them. Then they change and block the candidates from receiving messages from the board. They also extort them after they change their passwords.

    In view of this, the board has come up with adjustments to our operations. The first decision is that beginning from Thursday, April 15, candidates would no longer be required to provide any email address during registration from this year onwards.

    It is by going to these cyber cafes to open emails that these candidates are open to abuse and stealing of their personal data,’’ he said.

    He said that the board now had a mobile app that would allow candidates to deal directly with the board with their smartphones or via SMS to ‘55019’ code option.

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    The code option, he explained, would allow candidates to check admission status as well as all other verifications via SMS.

    He said, “Printing of examination slips, results notification or raising tickets can be done anywhere by using candidates’ registration number only. However, at the close of registration every year, we would need the email addresses of the candidates so we can have access to as many of them as possible.

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    At the conclusion of registration, candidates are expected to send their email addresses through the mobile app or text message to the 55019 code twice, for validation. This is to update their profile with JAMB as the email will no longer be used as access to their profile, but rather as a communication tool with candidates.’

    While advising candidates to guard their phones with utmost care as it was the weapon for all transactions, Oloyede said that henceforth, all JAMB owned Computer-Based Tests (CBT) centres across the country, would only allow candidates with ATM cards into its centres.

    He said that in order to cut down on the activities of fraudsters who hijack candidates to extort money from them, the centres would no longer allow candidates go outside the centres to pay for their e-pins and other cash transactions.

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    The JAMB Registrar said, “Only candidates with ATM cards will be allowed into all JAMB owned CBT centres, it can be that of their parents as long as they have the pin for the transaction.

    “Those without ATM cards can go to other privately owned CBT centres where they can pay cash to register but we will not take cash or transact outside our centres.’’

    What you should know

    Meanwhile, in a related development, JAMB had said that the board lost over N10 million in 2020 to activities of fraudsters who penetrated their payment portal for ad-hoc staff.

    The JAMB Registrar said that the money, which was meant to pay JAMB ad-hoc staff from the 2020 Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME), was hijacked by the suspected fraudsters.

    JAMB had a few days ago confirmed the commencement of registration for the 2021 UTME/DE examinations after the initial hiccup.

    It stated that applicants must provide NIN at the point of registration with the registration by Direct Entry candidates to run concurrently with that of UTME candidates.

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    FG grants 8 barge operations licenses as cargo movement to Onitsha port, others set to commence

    The government is likely to generate billions of naira in revenue from the movement of cargo from Lagos ports to other inland ports across the country.

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    We don’t have $1 billion hidden account – NPA

    The Federal Government has issued operating licences to about 8 barge operators to move containers from Lagos Ports to Onitsha River Port and other inland ports through the country’s inland waterways.

    This is as the government is likely to generate billions of naira in revenue with the planned movement of cargo from Lagos ports to Onitsha River Port and other inland ports across the country.

    According to a report from Thisday, the Federal Government would likely generate as much as N30 billion annually from that operation if well managed, although the Nigerian Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) is yet to make the estimated revenue from the effort public so as not to jeopardize the project.

    This is coming after some government officials had in August 2020, announced that some government maritime agencies are working on modalities for the commencement of transportation of containers from Lagos ports to Onitsha River port through barges.

    The Managing Director of NIWA, George Moghalu, at a meeting with the stakeholders in Lagos, said that moving cargoes by waters through barges would be cheaper than roads adding that the initiative was part of ongoing efforts to solve the gridlock in Lagos ports.

    What the Managing Director of NIWA is saying

    He said that NIWA management decided to have a meeting with the barge operators that it has already licensed to fashion out ways to make the project successful.

    Moghalu specifically said, “So it is all about moving cargo between Lagos and Onitsha and other inland ports. We have licensed about eight barge operators. A lot of people have applied but we are being very careful because we have the Standard Operating manual, which we strictly insist that you have to meet all the requirements. At the same time also we do not lose sight of the fact that NPA also licenses barge operators. We try to synergise our operations so standards are not compromised.”

    He said the use of the nation’s waterways would save the country’s decaying infrastructure and the money spent on repairing and rebuilding them and increase revenue generated by the government.

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    On the security of cargo, the NIWA boss said: “Even on the road, there are security challenges. So, there are security challenges everywhere and there is no way we would discuss the movement of cargoes without looking at the security challenges. There’s a case of getting everybody involved, the Navy, Police, the NIWA Police, Marine Police and even the local communities because security is everybody’s concern and we all have to address it.”

    He pointed out that the charges for using the waterways would be cheaper than moving cargoes by road as the modalities for moving cargoes from Lagos to Onitsha is being worked out.

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    He said, “People are creating unnecessary fear about insecurity, when I came into the office and made up my mind to explore the possibility of using our inland waterways, everybody discouraged me. Then we did a trial run using Onne to Onitsha and it worked.

    It is about identifying the channel, and surveys on a regular basis. We have our report guiding those that are going to use it and they will use it. I don’t want to be discouraged and I don’t want anything to dampen my enthusiasm like the enthusiasm of those working with us, the channels are navigable and the consignment will move.”

    In case you missed it

    The National Inland Water Ways Authority had last month, made public its intention to move 1000 containers per trip from Lagos ports to Onitsha river port within a maximum duration of 4 days.

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    It said that the idea of hauling containers from Lagos ports via Burutu Ports to Onitsha River Port is to deliberately avoid the two small bridges of Gbarekolo and Bumandi, which are too tiny and shallow for sea-moving badges or vessels to ply.

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