Kingsley U.N Chikwendu
The president of the Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria (REDAN), Alhaji Aliyu Wamakko and his team paid a courtesy visit to Imani Group in recognition of the group’s contributions to the development of housing in Abuja, the country’s capital and to intimate Imani and Sons on how far REDAN as an association has gone in developing the country’s real estate sector.
Wamakko while speaking, acknowledged that despite the negative effects of Covid-19 which he said “has set the whole world backward”, the country and the housing sector in particular can still move on and see what it can do. He emphasized on the REDAN Rural Urban Housing Initiative (RUHI) 774 which has been projected to produce affordable housing for rural dwellers across the 774 local government areas in the country. He said the scheme will help in reducing the housing deficit the country is facing.
According to estimations by the United Nations, the country is in a housing deficit of 17 million.
“We came up with many initiatives, among these include Rural Urban Housing Initiative (RUHI) 774 Project”, Wamakko began.
“We initiated this scheme so that we will be able to assist in reducing the housing deficit in the country and create jobs. We believe the economic downturn is all over the world, Nigeria is not an exception. We believe that in creating multiple jobs in the rural areas, it will surely revitalize the Nigerian economy. No matter how small it is, what we need now is a place that there should be exchange of money in our hands within the rural communities”.
Wamakko also intimated on the synergy initiated by REDAN with other professional bodies that include the Nigerian Society of Engineers, Nigerian Institute of Architects, Nigerian Institute of Estate Surveyors, among others. He said they came to an understanding to have a voice pleading with the federal government to create and implement more favourable housing policies for the country’s housing sector so as to produce good affordable housing for the masses.
He also spoke on the willingness of other bodies like the Nigerian Union of Teachers, Nigerian Union of Local Government Employees, Mortgage Banking Association of Nigeria, Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria, Nigeria Mortgage Refinance Company, these he said have expressed willingness to support RUHI 774.
Speaking on behalf of Imani Group, the Executive Director Planning, Alh. Suleman Abubakar (Walin Keffi) appreciated the strides made by the REDAN president, Wamakko since he assumed office, “I was just amazed”, he said.
“I believe that you have done so much at a time that everyone was paralyzed, the economy was paralyzed and a lot of the agencies and operations of businesses were paralyzed. You have covered so much grounds and I was really impressed. You can always count on my support.
“If you have this kind of energy and commitment, there is no way that we will not also try and keep up with your pace because you know the situation is a crisis”.
Abubakar further advised that stakeholders in the country should be involved in things that will improve rural communities like what REDAN is doing with its RUHI 774. “If we don’t create jobs for our youth, we will be in trouble. The scheme you are carrying out now will aid in its way to improving the lives of many youth in the country, he concluded.