The Minister of Housing and Urban Development, Ahmed Dangiwa, on Thursday performed the ground-breaking ceremony of a 480-housing unit project at the Kukwaba area of Abuja.
Speaking at the ceremony, the minister said that growing the housing industry required the participation of the private sector to bridge the housing deficit in the country.
He argued that the quantum of funding required to fix the housing shortage was beyond what the government can provide.
The project covers phases II and III of the company’s Kukwaba housing project and comprises 480 housing units of six-bedroom semi-detached duplexes as well as four-bedroom blocks of flats.
Dangiwa described the ground-breaking event as a significant contribution to the ministry’s ongoing efforts to address the housing crisis in the country. The initiative taken by Citygate Homes aligns perfectly with the government’s vision for sustainable urban development.
“This project embodies the collaborative efforts between the public and private sectors, showcasing how partnerships can drive impactful change and contribute to the growth and development of our nation.
“In a rapidly growing city like Abuja, the demand for housing has surged, and it is our collective responsibility to respond to this need. I commend Citygate Homes for their dedication and investment in this endeavour.
“This housing project will not only provide shelter but will also create job opportunities, stimulate economic growth, and contribute significantly to the enhancement of the local community,” he said.
The minister assured that the government will continue to provide the enabling environment for private-sector investment to thrive, especially with the determination displayed by President Bola Tinubu to cater for the welfare of Nigerians.
He urged them to embrace sustainability, inclusivity, and affordability in their housing and urban development drive.
“I commend Citygate Homes for their dedication and investment in this endeavour. This housing project will not only provide shelter but will also create job opportunities, stimulate economic growth, and contribute significantly to the enhancement of the local community.
“Furthermore, I want to emphasise the importance of sustainability and inclusivity in urban development.
“As we move forward, it is imperative that our housing projects incorporate eco-friendly designs, embrace technological advancements, and cater to the diverse needs of our society, including the low and medium income earners.
“In this regard, I will request that the management of City Gate Homes earmark a certain percentage of the 480-homes as affordable housing with price tags that average Nigerians can afford to buy.
“ As the Minister of Housing and Urban Development, I am an advocate of affordable housing with the focus on the average Nigerian worker, who are indeed, the majority,” he added.
He explained that developers should borrow a leaf from the ministry which has recently designed a housing plan to create integrated communities with housing types that reflect the diverse income segments of the country, using cross subsidies.
“This way we aim to sell high-end homes at market rates and deploy the profits towards subsidising the units for low-and-medium-income households. This enhances inclusivity,” he stressed.
He further urged the management of the company to ensure timely execution of the 480 units, while upholding the highest building codes and standards, as well as operate transparently.
Speaking earlier, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of CityGate Homes, Michael Ejiogu, noted that the company has nine projects in Abuja.
He added that he was committed to partnering the government in its quest to bridge the housing gap in Nigeria, assuring that the company will work to ensure affordability for medium-income earners in the country.
Emmanuel Addeh in Abuja