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FG Set To Restore 46 Abandoned Housing Projects Nationwide

Housing

The Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria has initiated a rehabilitation process to revive about 46 abandoned housing projects nationwide.

The bank said this would be achieved through a partnership with Shelter Afrique Development Bank, a pan-African finance institution that exclusively supports the development of the housing and real estate sector in Africa.

The FMBN Managing Director, Shehu Usman Osidi, stated this while hosting the management of Shelter Afrique Development Bank recently in Abuja, noting that the bank had made reviving the housing estates a priority.

According to him, the intensified collaboration will help provide construction and mortgage financing to developers in Nigeria.

He said, “Nigeria has over 46 abandoned projects in the 36 states and the FMBN is determined to revive them.

“Our findings show that banks have entered into a housing financing agreement with states where the state governments are expected to provide infrastructure for these estates, but unfortunately many states reneged and the projects were abandoned.

“We have explored the product offerings of Shelter Afrique Development Bank and found out that they offer infrastructure financing, so we want to bring them on board to offer this financing so we can finish up the projects and hand them over to many Nigerians who need shelter.”

Osidi further noted that Nigeria, the second largest shareholder in the bank with about 15 per cent holding, will explore areas of funding to achieve its target of delivering 100,000 housing units to Nigerians this year.

He mentioned that the FMBN is currently reviewing previously abandoned memoranda of understanding that were signed with the organisation. This review aims to explore the benefits that Nigerians could gain from this renewed partnership.

Also speaking, the CEO of Shelter Afrique, Thierno-Habib Hann, said the organisation was in Nigeria to promote its development financing agenda and identify Nigeria as a destination for investments with over $25bn in Diaspora remittances each year.

He said, “We are ready to collaborate with FMBN and other institutions across Nigeria to address the housing gap. The challenges are there and the opportunities are also there. As a development finance institution, we are very well positioned to collaborate with the government of Nigeria and in this trip, we met all the leadership including the vice president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria who is fully committed to driving the growth of the sector and invest more in the sector knowing that housing creates jobs.”

Meanwhile, the bank has said it collected about N100bn in remittances through the National Housing Fund in 2023.

The NHF scheme was established by the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria to facilitate the continuous flow of low-cost funds for long-term investment in housing, through 2.5 per cent monthly deductions from employees earning a basic salary.

The former FMBN Managing Director, Madu Hamman, stated this in his handover document obtained by our correspondent.

He said, “The highlight of our achievements in the last 22 months includes that for the first time, in 2023 the National Housing Fund collection for the bank exceeded the N100bn mark. This is the first time in the history of the bank that the annual collection exceeded N100bn.”

“You have to think deeply about how you’re going to be able to satisfy the demands of the numerous contributors to the scheme through various innovative ways of raising finance, which should include going outside the NHF because if we continue to rely on the NHF that would not be achievable.”