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HDAN urges FG to address housing deficit

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By Abraham Adekunle

A call to action to tackle the crisis for which Nigeria ranks first.

The Housing Development Advocacy Network (HDAN) has urged the federal government to take immediate action to address the housing deficit in Nigeria, emphasizing that every citizen has the right to a safe and secure home. This appeal was made by Festus Adebayo, Executive Director of HDAN, in a press statement. Adebayo highlighted the dire situation of inadequate shelter globally, citing a 2024 Habitat for Humanity estimate that 1.53 billion people worldwide live in inadequate housing.

Nigeria ranks first with 25 million homeless people, followed by India with 18 million, a situation he described as shocking. Adebayo lamented that Nigeria’s housing policy is not being effectively implemented at all levels of government, resulting in increasing poverty and homelessness rates. He criticized state governments for their poor performance in providing affordable housing, neglecting the most vulnerable citizens who need access to low-income housing. “Nigeria’s housing policy is not being effectively implemented at all levels of government, poverty and homelessness rates are increasing daily, and there are no real solutions in sight,” he said.

There is enough funds to cater to every housing need in Nigeria.

This housing crisis is a global issue, affecting various regions, but the effectiveness of government responses varies significantly. Adebayo noted that state governments often promise land in remote areas without necessary infrastructure, leading to high costs for the end product. He emphasized that Nigeria must make a critical decision regarding its citizens who cannot afford market rents. “Will it let them die on the streets, or will it use some of its wealth to ensure people can live with dignity, regardless of their poverty?” Adebayo asked.

Adebayo stressed that Nigeria is wealthy enough to ensure that no citizen should live on the streets, calling on the government to study successful housing policies in countries like Japan, Thailand, Switzerland, Finland, Denmark, Slovenia, and Costa Rica, which could be replicated. He noted that these countries have implemented effective housing policies that have significantly reduced homelessness and increased access to affordable housing. The crisis requires urgent and effective action, and every Nigerian deserves the dignity of a safe and secure home.

Call on FG to establish a national housing fund.

His appeal emphasizes the need for the government to take immediate action to address the housing deficit and ensure that every citizen has access to affordable and decent housing. This includes implementing policies that promote affordable housing, increasing funding for housing programs, and providing incentives for private developers to build affordable homes. Also, Adebayo emphasized the need for a comprehensive approach to address the root causes of homelessness, including poverty, lack of education, and unemployment. He noted that addressing these underlying issues will help reduce the demand for housing and ensure that citizens have the resources they need to afford decent housing.

In addition, Adebayo called on the government to establish a national housing fund to provide financing for affordable housing projects. He noted that this fund could be sourced from a combination of government allocations, private sector investments, and international funding agencies. This fund would provide a dedicated source of financing for housing projects, ensuring that funds are available to support the development of affordable housing. He as well emphasized the need for community engagement and participation in addressing the housing crisis.

Related Article: Affordable housing for citizens from FG

He noted that citizens must be involved in the planning and implementation of housing projects to ensure that their needs are met and that they have a sense of ownership and responsibility for their homes. In all, the housing deficit in Nigeria is a critical issue that requires immediate attention and action. The government must take a comprehensive approach to address the root causes of homelessness, implement policies that promote affordable housing, and provide financing for housing projects. Adebayo’s appeal emphasizes the need for urgent and effective action to ensure that every Nigerian has access to a safe and secure home.


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