New Land Administration Policy to be ready soon

Golfa Francis, Abuja

Aerial view of Abuja city

The National Council on Lands, Housing and Urban Development has approved that the process of formulating a new National Land Administration Policy for the country be accelerated.

It also approved the initiation of a systemic implementation of a Nationwide Cadastral and Township Mapping of Nigeria.

This will be used as a basis for establishing an enterprise Geographic Information System and Land Information System in Nigeria by the Office of the Surveyor-General of the Federation.

1st January, 2017 has also been approved by the Council as the date for adoption of Exchange of Letters for the transfer of interest in land between Federal and State Governments.

The Council, at its 5th Meeting in Ilorin, Kwara State, approved that States that were yet to respond to the Circular on Exchange of Letters should do so before 30th November, this year.

On housing finance and affordable housing delivery, the Council approved that the Federal Government and other stakeholders should re-capitalize the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria  from its present capital base of N2.5b to N500 billion.

Governments at all levels were asked to support the quest for affordable housing through the provision of free and unencumbered land for mass housing projects.

They are to also underwrite infrastructure cost through mortgage discount financing in partnership with mortgage banks, and the waiver of registration fees for mass housing project, to reduce the selling prices of such houses.

States, Local Governments and corporate bodies that have withdrawn from the National Housing Fund scheme were asked by the council to return, to facilitate their access to  home renovation loans and other funds.

As the use of recently launched Building Energy Efficiency Guide for Nigeria by all relevant stakeholders in the building industry was accepted by the Council, agreeing that the initiation of a follow-up process of passing a law enforcing compliance with the provisions of the National Building Code by the National Assembly be domesticated by the various States Houses of Assembly.

Council approved that relevant agencies that offer rebates/incentives be requested to grant incentives for any solar panels and Solar Hot Water systems installed in Residential and Commercial Building projects.

Government and corporate bodies were urged by the Council to provide adequate funds for research and development activities in higher institutions.

They were also encouraged to establish factories to produce the required local materials for solar electricity, batteries, Photo Voltaic Panels and Direct Current in home appliances.

The private sector in the building industry will also need to be supported for the delivery of new housing units with off-grid energy provision, such as  solar powered homes, to reduce dependence on the national grid.

This will also provide the enabling environment for the sale of privately generated excess renewable energy to the Electricity Distribution Companies.