By Tony Adibe
The Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) said it has spent not less than N15.4 billion to deliver 1,924 housing units in Enugu State within the eight years of the President Muhammadu Buhari administration.
Disclosing this on Tuesday during the commissioning of FMBN/I-Connect Winners Estate, Trans-Ekulu, Enugu, the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of FMBN, Madu Hamman said that successful delivery of the project was a proof that the Cooperative Housing initiative developed by the Bank could be a game changer in the government efforts at tackling the housing shortage facing Nigerians.
Hamman explained that out of the 1,924 housing units, 404 which were commissioned were developed by I-Connect Investment Cooperative Society Limited and financed by FMBN.
Hamman, who was represented by the bank’s Executive Director, Loans and Mortgage Services, Lukman Mustapha said that the transaction with I-Connect Cooperative Society delivered four projects rolled into one. He noted that through the landmark project, the Bank has delivered 404 housing units in four separate transactions, the first three located in Trans Ekulu while the fourth in Nkanu West local government of the state.
According to him, “The journey to deliver these projects with I-Connect started in 2018 with the first loan advanced to the cooperative for the purpose of delivering 52 housing units. In 2019, another loan was approved for the society to deliver another 52 units. In 2020 and 2022, two other separate transactions were approved to deliver 150 housing units each. In total, the Bank has committed more than N5.2 billion credit facilities on these projects. Remarkably, all the projects have been successfully delivered and the housing units taken up by members of the cooperative society who are NHF contributors. This is a successful template that the Bank is replicating across the country.”
Hamman further said: “In addition to the four housing projects that we are commissioning today financed under the FMBN CHDL window, we have nine other housing projects spread across the State that have also been financed and successfully delivered by FMBN under our various loan windows. Through those projects, the Bank has committed more than N10.2 billion to deliver 1,520 housing units.”
He noted that the housing delivery efforts by FMBN was not limited to Enugu State, as the bank was replicating the efforts across Nigeria to continue to reduce the housing deficit and provide affordable homes for the people.
The CEO further said: “It is noteworthy that while we are working assiduously on the supply side to increase the housing stock, we are also steadily increasing our mortgage loan portfolio on the demand side. Within the last 12 months, we have approved a sum of about N14 billion NHF Loan, N2.5 billion Rent To Own and N200 million Individual Construction Loan to over 2000 loan applicants who are NHF contributors.”
In an attempt to enhance the private and informal sector participation, the FMBN “recently approved an increase in the NHF Mortgage Loan ceiling from N15 million to N50 million per applicant to answer the calls from high income earners, majorly from the private sector. In the same vein, over N5 billion was approved by the Board for housing development for employees of some private organisations.”
The Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Raji Fashola (SAN), while addressing the people, lauded the FMBN and I-Connect for the delivery of the projects which he said would impact positively on the people.
He said that the federal government under President Buhari has done so much to reduce the poverty level in the country by providing houses to several Nigerians, adding that “when you talk about solving problems such as poverty, there’s nothing more defining as shelter. And that is a measure of prosperity.
“You have moved from becoming a dependent for shelter to persons who are now reasonably self-sufficient. There are many other people apart from homeowners, such as architects, surveyors, construction companies, artisans and suppliers and transporters who benefited from the projects.”
Commissioning the project, Enugu State Governor, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi expressed deep appreciation to the federal government for what it has done in Southeast zone in fixing the Enugu-Onitsha expressway among other projects, urging it to intervene in fixing the deplorable spots. Ugwuanyi who was represented by his deputy, Mrs. Cecelia Ezeilo, noted that the state government was doing a lot on providing access roads to the FMBN projects in the state.