Implement new housing policy, stakeholders tell Sanwo-Olu

Stakeholders have called on the Lagos State Government to expedite the implementation of its new housing policy, to support and sustain the development of mixed-income housing projects.

The stakeholders made the call at the Dissemination Workshop on Community Infrastructure Projects and Lagos State Development Plan 2052, organised by the Centre for Housing and Sustainable Development, University of Lagos, Rethinking Cities Initiative in collaboration with Heinrich Böll Stiftung in Lagos.

They said, “The housing policy document is essential for fostering the development of no-income and low-income housing, as well as the finalisation and passage of the Affordable/Mixed-Income Housing Bill, which supports and sustains the development of affordable and mixed-income housing projects.”

“In addition, the Lagos State Development Plan 2023–2050, proposes initiatives that encourage developers to invest in the creation of mixed-income, inclusive, and environmentally sustainable housing within urban areas. The plan entails offering compelling incentives, such as tax rebates and waivers on permit costs, as well as allocating land at subsidised rates.”

Presenting the outcomes from research ‘Assessing Community Development Projects in Lagos’ on behalf of the CHSD-UNILAG team and results from the asset mapping exercise conducted across the five communities, namely Ajegunle-Ikorodu, Ogooluwakitan, Ago Central, Akoka, and Oworonshoki, Director, the Centre for Housing and Sustainable Development, Prof. Taibat Lawanson, said findings showed that government-sponsored projects faced abandonment.

According to Lawanson, it suggests re-evaluating how resources are deployed to communities.

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She added, “Communities prefer improving existing projects rather than initiating new ones, and emphasising practical solutions. It noted that the cost of accessing community development projects, particularly water is exorbitant, raising concerns about affordability across communities.

“It also observed that private vendors and community-led projects have been more successful than government-led initiatives, revealing a need for effective project management across communities. Community priorities include improved security, power infrastructure, roads, sanitation, education, and prioritising maintenance of existing projects and completion of ongoing projects.”

Lawanson said the main reason for the dissemination event was for the legislators to interact with the communities to understand their needs.

Meanwhile, the stakeholders also advocated for the revival of the real estate developers’ programme.

They asserted that it was a strategic initiative wherein corporate entities were provided with land to construct homes and essential infrastructure.

They urged, “The revitalised programme should prioritise the development of low-income and mixed-income housing, as well as propose the implementation of a robust three-year plan dedicated to the phased execution of mixed-income housing projects across Lagos.”

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