By Princely Onyenwe,Imo
A front line social critics in Imo state,
Dr Nnaemeka Onyeka Obiaraeri, FICA, MIRA has dared the government to cushion the immediate needs of Nigerians and relieve their conditions to save the nation.
This statement was made public on a chat with press men few moments ago.
According to Obiaraeri,”It is an incontrovertible fact that over 98% of Nigerians, excluding Diasporans, cannot legitimately and honestly build or own their own homes without cutting corners.
He maintained that Nigeria currently has a huge housing deficit of over 20million houses. It is conservatively estimated that it will require over N120trillion to fix this huge housing infrastructure deficit gap because the demographics are damning and too stunning.
He however berates the government since according to him, Over 100m Nigerians today live on less than N700 income per day or N21,000 per month.92% of Nigerians live on less than N60,000 per month income or N2000 per day income. And that barely 1% of Nigerians live on income of N1m per month and above .
Of a fact for anyone to build a very decent 2 to 3 bedroom apartment will require at least N6m to 10m. What a harsh leadership system.
Unfortunately, there are no coordinated, tangible, focused , systemic, scientific, and long term plans, policies and programs amongst the three tiers of governments to solve this huge infrastructure challenges. It is all mouthing, grandstanding and no tangible strategies and execution frameworks.
He futher stated that there are no truly long term mortgages and property development financing arrangements in place. The cost of financing is outrageous and out of this world .
In a third world economy with such atrocious 20 million units housing deficit total cost of exchange and transfer of properties from buyer to seller should not be more than 0.5% and should not take more than 15days .
Regrettably,the large pool of funds that should have been generated domestically through the reformed pension regime are not there .Our cumulative pension funds assets in Nigeria is just less than 5% of our GDP , with less than 7% of qualifying Nigerians enrolled.
This is very much low compared to that of other developing countries around us . South Africa , Malaysia, Chile , Mexico etc all have pension funds assets numbers/values that are over 75% of their GDP. The enrollment is top notch . In the developed countries like the US and Britain , their pension fund assets is almost 120% of their GDP.
No incentives to drive this enrollment. Scientific proposals forwarded to the PENCOM to help us address this huge gaps are gathering dust in their shelves and swamped under stifling bureaucracy and politics .
He further adviced people not to jump in here to argue with him, but to kindly bring out their calculator to check their honest free revenues and income, look yourself sincerely in the mirror and swore to your image that you are not amongst these 98% Nigerians.
Please what is your honest income bracket ?
However, we can fix all these challenges simultaneously. There is no challenge that is staring us in the face to in this country that we cannot easily surmount as a people, if only we can start by telling ourselves the truth, starting from you and me in the mirror first.
WHAT IS THE WAY FORWARD?
HOW CAN WE BRIDGE THE 20MILLION HOUSING UNITS VALUED AT OVER N120TRILLION WITHIN THE NEXT 20- 30 YEARS?
- Let’s destroy the 1999 satanic verses and replace it with a contemporaneous version of the progressive 1960 independent constitution.
- Amend the land use Act to make it far more easier to transfer land assets without recourse to the overbearing antics of governors.
- Amend the Reformed Pension Funds Act to make it a jailable offence ( 6 months without option of fine) for any employer, who does not enrol his or her employees into the scheme. ( employees numbers of 1 to infinity ) . This will help us to unlock long term funding for infrastructure and housing development plus mortgages.
- Pursue monetary policies and fiscal reforms that encourages longer term mortgages of not less than 25 years for mortgage financing at lower single digits.
- Design, structure, digitize, remove all the bureaucratic bottle necks and put in place policy and program frameworks that reduces the total costs of transfer of landed assets to more than 0.5% and period of transfer to not more than 30days .
He insisted that we have the people and resources to fix this contraption and turn it to paradise. But unfortunately, the wrong demographics are holding all of us down, and a majority of us have refused to say enough is enough.
9News Nigeria (Owerri)
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