Our Stand (69) —
Africa’s leading housing advocacy organisation, Housing Development Advocacy Network (HDAN), yesterday successfully hosted the 2022 edition of the Affordable Housing Hall of Fame.
The event which was a reward for excellence, recognition of outstanding achievements of key stakeholders, firms and government housing establishments that have promoted the provision of affordable housing in the country, honoured housing stakeholders, even posthumous awards were given to those who made huge strides in positively impacting the provision of affordable housing for Nigerians, leaving indellible marks for the emulation of others and inspiring many, due to their immeasurable contributions to the development of the built sector.
In his opening speech, the convener of the event, Barr. Festus Adebayo recognized the housing achievements of the Yobe State Governor, Alh. Mai Mala Buni whom he said “provided fifty percent for houses civil servants were supposed to pay fully for”.
“He did not only allow them to pay the remaining fifty percent, but told them the fifty percent will be paid for a spread period of time”, he said.
The Governor was represented by his Deputy, Idi Barde Gubana, in company of the Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Secretary to the State Government, three Commissioners , Permanent Secretary of the state’s housing ministry and Managing Director of Yobe State Housing Corporation, among others.
Chairman of the event, Surveyor Suleiman Hassan, a former Minister of state, Works and Housing said between the 2021 and 2022 editions of the event, a lot of housing stakeholders have gone to higher places, while some have retired, citing yesterday’s appointment of Dr. (Mrs) Chii Akporji as Chairman of Shelter Afrique. He said it’s a win for the Nigerian housing sector.
He added that these set of persons can serve as inspiration to the younger ones who are coming up and act as mentors to many who are aspiring to be like them.
“Look up to those who can inspire and make you a better person than you are today”, Hassan concluded in his speech.
The 2022 Africa Housing Awards had thirty-four winners for thirty categories, while its Affordable Housing Hall of Fame induction recorded only one inductee which is the Late Abdul Abubakar, founder of Imani and Sons Nigeria Limited, a housing firm that is still waxing strong, despite the demise of its founder.
Applause should be given to the brains behind the continued existence of Imani and Sons, particularly, Bello Abubakar (Majidadin Keffi), Director Projects and Suleiman Abubakar (Walin Keffi), Executive Director, Planning. Both and other family members were in attendance to receive the posthumous for their late father. As they continue to stir the company forward, they are encouraged to put in more efforts to contribute to the growth of housing development in the country.
Also, the iron horse behind the annual organization of the awards, Festus Adebayo should be commended for this thought-provoking idea of celebrating icons in the hosuing industry. And as the Chairman of the event, Suleiman Hassan earlier pointed out, oustanding figures like Adebayo is a pillar whom the younger generation are looking up to in moving the housing industry forward. As a vibrant stakeholder in the industry, he is therefore encouraged to sustain this unparralled idea of rewarding excellence in the sector.
In addition, the fight by the President of the Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria (REDAN), Alh. Aliyu Wamakko, against using the real estate industry as a channel for money laundering must be commended. Wamakko was given the Anti Money Laundering Real Estate Advocacy Award.
The event which had in attendance Commissioners from Niger, Plateau, Edo, added to Yobe State’s, also saw other personalities that graced the event. They include the Managing Director of the Federal Mortage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN), Madu Hamman, the Chairman Board of Trustees of the Nigeria Institute of Architects, Arc. Musa Sada, the Acting CEO of Family Homes Funds Ltd, Yakubu Sanni, the President of the Nigerian Institute of Town Planners, Tpl Nathaniel Atebije.
Others include the Nigerian Ambassador to Burundi, Amb. Elijah Onyeagba, representative of Labour Party Presidential Candidate, Ibrahim Husseini Abdulkareem, Arc. (Chief) Gabriel Aduku, former Minister of state, Health, representative of the Honourable Minister of Works and Housing, GMD of Odua Group of Companies, Members of House of Reps, among others.