Abiodun: Meeting the housing needs of Ogun residents
The three basic necessities of life include food, shelter, and safety. Housing is one of the most expensive assets that people aspire to own. But government everywhere is ensuring that the basic needs of its citizens are met. It is common knowledge that the current administration of Ogun State, with its determined governance and sound development plan, summed up as the mantra ‘Building our future together’, has opened up many parts of the state through to capital investments in infrastructure, including housing, as one of the pillars and catalysts, for accelerated economic growth and state development.
In providing affordable housing for everyone, government alone cannot shoulder the burden. Thus, the government is creating programs to provide safe and affordable housing, a number of which still exist in one form or another to make rents affordable or to provide low-income people with opportunities to get loans to buy homes. houses. Nonetheless, it is the determination and commitment of any responsive and responsible government to harness all the resources and manpower at its disposal to reduce poverty and provide affordable housing for the people of the state.
In reality, access to affordable housing has become a huge challenge in a fast growing economy like Ogun State where potential investors have expressed their willingness to open stores, almost daily, thanks to the launch. place of a favorable business environment and friendly help from the government. Strategies. This new housing program, especially in a state like Ogun, as envisioned by the current administration, will help close the housing deficit, if and when it occurs.
In response to the influx of people into the state, a striking feature that is commendable on the part of the current administration is the ongoing revolution in providing housing projects at adequate, affordable and sustainable rates in the three senatorial districts, in order to fill a potential deficit in the near future.
The housing projects that are being built jointly by the Ogun State Housing Corporation, the Department of Housing and the Ogun State Property and Investment Corporation (OPIC), say a lot about the administration’s giant strides in addressing the deficit. .
The inauguration, on Thursday July 1, 2021, of 130 apartments in the “Prince Court Estate” located in Kemta, Idi-Aba, Abeokuta, was the first phase of the 300 single and semi-detached houses with two and three bedrooms. . This was the first in a series of housing projects undertaken by the current administration across the state as part of the 2,500 housing units to be provided in four years.
This ‘Prince Court Estate’ has been provided with amenities, such as paved roads, water supply, good drainage, fencing, security and power supply, a model which now falls to the sound design of the property. current administration for the “Grand Abeokuta” as worthy of the capital.
There is no doubt that this is part of the government’s deliberate efforts to ensure that Abeokuta, the capital of Ogun State, has the proper infrastructure and amenities that will set it apart from its peers. , not only in Nigeria, but across Africa. . And this is what the administration is doing in collaboration with the “United Kingdom’s Future Cities Project”.
Overall, the completed and ongoing housing projects demonstrate the commitment of the current administration to infrastructure development in general and the provision of decent housing in particular.
Gateway Mortgage Bank Limited, which remains a dominant player, provided the essential mortgage to subscribers of the housing units.
In addition, with the state government’s interest in partnering with the Nigerian Mortgage Refinance Company (NMRC), the future is bright for underwriters to access long-term loan at low interest rates. .
During a recent courtesy visit to Ogun State Commissioner for Housing, Omoniyi, NMRC Managing Director / Managing Director, Mr. Kehinde Ogundimu, stressed that affordable housing will continue to remain a mirage until that the housing sector receives massive support from all stakeholders. stakeholders and join forces to make it possible.
The government is unequivocally prepared to provide 2,500 homes across the state in the first four-year term. That’s an unbeatable number that exceeds any housing that any previous administration has provided since the state was established on February 3, 1976.
In the meantime, it’s good news that the recently completed second phase project, Kobape Housing Estate, located on the Abeokuta-Sagamu highway, which was built less than a year ago, is expected to be delivered to successful subscribers ahead of the festivities. Christmas and New Year.
Ogun State Commissioner for Housing, Jagunmolu Akande Omoniyi, who replaced Governor Dapo Abiodun, in an interactive session with subscribers, noted that the housing program, which is a benchmark in government efforts to reduce the housing deficit in the state, is endowed with advanced infrastructure, such as electricity, water, a shopping mall, a health center, an automated teller machine (ATM) and a security post. The 300-unit Kobape housing estate consists of 1, 2 and 3 bedroom apartments, respectively.
The level of structure and infrastructure provided in the first phase of the project at ‘King’s Court, Kemta, Abeokuta, nevertheless, speaks volumes about the interest shown by subscribers in the’ mad rush ‘for the second phase located in Kobape, Abeokuta (Obafemi-Owode local government area).
Subsequently, the moving train should soon dock in Sagamu (Ogun East) for 200 units, 100 units each for Ota and Ilaro (Ogun West), respectively for the third phase of the project, with the aim of covering the three senatorial districts. . as promised by the governor.
Other housing projects already completed and awarded to subscribers retained in this class include the 400 worker housing in Kemta, Idi-Aba, Abeokuta delivered at a reduced rate, while there is a downward revision of the 160 AAK Degun Estate housing located at Laderin Estate Abeokuta with initial sale price of N7 million to N5 million. And for the 92 three-bedroom semi-detached apartment units and also the 68 two-bedroom apartment units which have been reduced from 5 million naira to 4 million naira.
In the magnanimity of the administration, the government also refunded payments to AAK Degun Estate Laderin beneficiaries, Abeokuta, who had previously made full payments. And this translates into the repayment of 1.5 million naira each to some of the recipients of the three-bedroom apartments, just as the government has also relaxed its terms and conditions in the sale of units, including the reduction in the rate of interest from 18 percent to 6 percent.
However, the government is not only making arrangements for affordable housing for residents to fill the gap, but it is also committed to providing affordable, crisis-free land programs to residents of the state who are ready to build on their own. same under the “Site and Service Land Scheme” in different places on a flexible payment plan.
• Ogbonnikan is the media assistant to Governor Dapo Abiodun
So far, on the first phase of Kings Court Estate Kemta, Idi-Aba, Abeokuta, located in the state capital, 130 units have been fully completed with state-of-the-art infrastructure and facilities. In addition, it should be noted that this laudable intervention project, by the state government, is already replicated in the reserved government areas (GRA) and resettlement, such as: Kemta, Idi-Aba 2, Abeokuta (Abeokuta South LGA), Ijebu-Ode (Ijebu-Ode LGA), Otta (Ado-Odo / Ota LGA), Ilaro (Yewa South LGA), Sagamu WAPCO (Sagamu LGA), Lagos / Ibadan Expressway, Sagamu (Sagamu LGA) , Kobape (Obafemi-Owode) and Iperu (Remo Nord).
As part of the government’s desire to live up to its game in this sector, it has also renovated and initiated the construction of comfortable quarters of the 20 primary health care centers (CSP) spread across the state for its residents. health workers. Other arrangements include fixing modern household equipment in these neighborhoods.
In addition, in addition to choosing the State of Ogun as the first beneficiary of the 10,000 housing units to be built by the Federal Government under the Social Housing Program, the State Government has also proposed the provision of 2 500 additional units before the end of the first term. according to the current administration, in order to fill the 12,500 housing units concerned.
A year ago, at an event to commemorate ‘World Habitat Day 2020 with the theme; “Housing for all: a better urban future” in Abeokuta, Governor Abiodun pointed out that, in accordance with the theme and the United Nations (UN) Agenda 2030, his administration had embarked on the construction of a program of affordable mass housing throughout the state, a development, he said, marked the state government’s commitment to the delivery of the housing program that would not be confined to the capital of the city alone. ‘State (Abeokuta).
According to him, “The right to adequate housing has been recognized and enshrined in numerous international instruments and conventions, supported by most governments around the world, and Nigeria is no exception. Therefore, assistance programs in the area of financing and provision of infrastructure have been designed by the government to improve delivery. The governor further stated that:
“For us as a government, recognizing that decent and affordable housing is a human rights issue, we launched our 2,500 affordable housing program to alleviate housing crises in our state, as well as in part of our sustainability. We are also partnering with the federal government for another 10,000 social housing program. ”
In addition to solving the housing deficit, the encouraging development of these projects is that it has provided a component of job creation for unemployed youth teeming with the use of local contractors to manage construction. In addition, the main and subcontractors, many artisans, workers, suppliers and sellers of food are also effectively hired to make a living from these projects.
The second strategy developed by the government to tackle the state housing deficit through the public-private partnership (PPP) mechanism, includes the interest shown by both the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) and the Family Home Funds (FHF) to join forces with the State. government in carrying out housing projects. The PPP option involves the state government providing land to private investors at a subsidized rate, while the investors build affordable housing.
Parts of the waivers were the recent 30% reduction in the cost of land and amenity charges given to commercial businesses as a form of COVID-19 stopgap. By this gesture, the government decided to support investors with the State’s land resources in view of the toll that the pandemic has taken on businesses.
Ogbonnikan is the media assistant to Governor Dapo Abiodun