News

By John Ndu

Awka, May 20, 2021 (MOI) Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Anambra State Housing Development Corporation, Mr Willie Okafor said Anambra state has finalised arrangements to partner banks for establishment of housing schemes for the state’s civil servants.

Mr Okafor, an Architect, who said this in an interview noted the arrangements, would be with the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria, the Family Home front, and many others.

According to him such institutions have all kinds of policies such as affordable housing, mass housing, and low-income housing.

Okafor urged the Federal Government to de-emphasize the unilateral policy it had adopted for housing development across all the states of the Federation.

It was gathered that due to the nature of the FG Housing Policies which were usually single-story buildings, it has not been feasible for Anambra State to tap into the various schemes to provide housing facilities for its people.

The MD noted that statistics showed that Anambra had been the second smallest state in Nigeria after Lagos and also the state that had the second-highest population density in the country.

As a result of this, the cost of land, which is a critical asset in housing development, had become expensive, due to the high demands for it and the very low mass.

Architect Okafor noted that it was the plan for Anambra, to develop high-rise buildings, which he said would be the real mass housing, to be able to accommodate more people on the same space of land.

This he, noted, would ensure judicious use of the scarce lands in the state.

The Anambra Housing Development boss advocated for FG to consider developing separate housing policies for different states in consideration of their individual peculiarities.

“Different locations should have different considerations in developing housing policies for states in Nigeria.

“It is a known fact that the Northern part of this country is blessed with ample lands while the South Eastern parts did not have such luxury.

“As a result of this, the type of housing policy you adopt, say for states like Nasarawa or Kogi, with very large landmass, should not be the same for a state like Anambra. In Nassarawa, land is not a challenge but in Anambra, it is.

“While you will be able to develop bungalows in Nassarawa, we cannot afford the same in Anambra because here we want high-rise buildings.

“This is to ensure that more people are accommodated in a building you put up in the same space that you could have built a bungalow.

“By this arrangement, we are trying to encourage high-rise buildings. So, the FG should apply some flexibility because you cannot have a common housing policy for every area. “In developed countries like the US and United Arab Emirates that is what obtains. This will also to ensure that the cost of land is not way higher than the development you put on it.’’ (MOI)
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