@50: You performance below expectation, FG knocks FHA 

The Federal Government Thursday called on the Federal Housing Authority (FHA) to scale up its housing units’ delivery as it marked its 50th anniversary,  saying that 50,000 housing units delivery since its inception is not acceptable. 

The Minister of Housing and Urban Development, Architect Ahmed Musa Dangiwa, who spoke at the FHA’s golden jubilee celebration held in Abuja,  also lamented that the Public Private Partnership (PPP) that the agency entered into over the years delivered little or no value to the country. 

To this end, Dangiwa asked the FHA to wake up to its responsibilities and urged the agency to see its 50th anniversary as a moment of soul-searching. 

He said: “Pursuant to the re-defined roles, the National Council on Privatization in May 2013, approved FHA’s commercialization. The aim was to reduce the magnitude and scope of financial support of the Federal Government and allow the Authority to adapt to changing business requirements. At this time FHA had only managed to deliver 37,000 houses in its 40 years of existence. 

“Now, ten years after commercialization, records show that FHA has only delivered a cumulative of just over 50,000 housing units. That shows an average of 1,000 houses per year in 50 years. This is not acceptable, especially from Nigeria’s foremost housing agency that has so many institutional advantages that it can leverage to deliver more results.

“Last month, during the Shelter Afrique EGM in Algeria, I discovered from my engagements with the Algerian Government that an Agency like the FHA delivers between 400,000 and 1m houses annually. In fact, in a particular year, that Agency delivered 1,060,000 houses.  This underscores the need for FHA to aggressively upscale its delivery capacity.

“I am also pained to say that analysis of all the PPPs that the FHA has entered into over the years has delivered little or no value to the country. This is also not acceptable. FHA needs to wake up to its responsibilities.  

FHA must see this 50th anniversary as a moment of soul-searching and resolve that the next 50 years will tell a different story. Like they say, we cannot change the past, but we can shape the future by doing things differently.

“FHA is the one agency that has the license to play in all income segments, so the ministry expects the FHA to make judicious use of this advantage in the broad strategy of the government to deliver housing to Nigerians. 

“I want to see the FHA go to the capital market, issue bonds, and raise funding to deliver mass housing projects across the country, market them, pay back the loans, and declare profit.”

In his address, the former Head of State, General Yakubu Gowon, under whose regime the FHA was established in 1973, remarked that the agency was established as part of the socio-political development plan and fulfillment of the post-civil war.

Gowon also expressed his appreciation that his administration had the foresight to establish the FHA to lay the foundation for a more secure and prosperous future. 

Earlier, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of FHA, Senator Gbenga Ashafa, who said the agency’s journey in the last 50 years was full of turns and twists, noted that it had recorded many achievements.