(AGENDAWATCHDOG) – In its bid to complement government’s housing initiatives, Nigeria’s apex financial regulatory institution, the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has approved a whooping sum of N200 billion as mortgage finance loan to Family Homes Fund (FHF) targeted at low-income earners.
According to a statement on the CBN’s website on Tuesday, the fund would be used to construct 300,000 housing units in the country’s 36 states, including Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), and is projected to create approximately 1.5 million jobs within a five-year period.
The statement further added that “The programme will house up to 900,000 children and adults (at an average of 3 persons/home) on a low income with direct impact on health, education and economic outcomes”.
“Most of these would currently live in informal settlements with shared facilities in unsanitary environments. Towards targeting people on low-income level across the country.”
In order to prevent capital flight, the CBN disclosed that the proposed structures would be built using approximately 90 per cent local content.
According to the CBN, “In that regard, the programme will deliberately aim to revitalize local manufacture of construction materials including doors and windows, ironmongery, sanitary fittings, concrete products, tiles, glass, electrical fittings/fixtures and bricks etc”.
“For example, it is estimated that the programme will require up to 1.7m doors, 7m door hinges and locks etc.”
The CBN further stated that Beneficiaries of the housing scheme would be expected to pay an interest rate of about 5.0% p.a. (all-inclusive), which will be subject to review from time to time, as necessitated by exigencies.
POTENTIAL IMPACT: The CBN’s target of providing 300,000 housing units in the country’s 36 states, including Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), via the projected fund, will boost the country’s drive towards providing adequate housing for its citizens, as about 900,000 children and adults from low income background will be directly impacted, alongside the health, education and economic benefits.
Again, the approximately 1.5 million jobs projected to be generated within a five-year period will no doubt help ameliorate the country’s unemployment conundrum.