Government alone can’t provide housing – Fashola

The Minister of Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, has said government only cannot meet the housing needs of Nigerians, hence the need to create an enabling environment for private sector involvement in housing provision.

The minister said this during the launch of the National Housing Strategy Blueprint at the ministry headquarters on Friday.

The document is a 10-year strategic blueprint designed to harmonise all extant housing initiatives by various stakeholders into a single strategy.

He stated that despite the numerous housing programmes initiated by the current administration for affordable housing, it still didn’t provide more homes than private enterprises.

According to him, the private sector remains the real driver of housing solutions, adding that the document would unleash the power of private capital in the sector.

He added, “There is nothing the government does in the housing sector that exceeds and provides more than what the private sector can do. Whether it is a state government building or the federal government, the real drivers at the end of the day are the capacity of private capital for providing more houses.

“When you look at the scope of land holding, apart from the state government that owns the bulk of the land, the Federal Government doesn’t have as much land as the collective land holding in the hands of the private sector.”

Fashola reiterated the need for data as he gave an assurance that the scheduled population census would reveal the real extent of housing problems in the country. He noted that one of the data to be collected during the census would be those who live in a rented house, those who own their house, those who have other houses, and the type of houses people live in.

“So, let’s hold our breath and when the figure comes, it will be very reliable, upon which we can see the real size of the problem,” he added.

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