The World Bank has rated the Nigeria Housing Program (NHFP) which was created towards achieving the Project Development Objectives (PDO) low in its assessment of the projects recently.
The latest rating by the global bank revealed that the NHFP which was satisfactory as at January 2017 went down to moderately satisfactory in July 2017. A $300 million International Development Association (IDA)’s was approved by the World Bank Board of Directors to boost Nigeria’s effort to provide affordable mortgages for middle-income and lower income families.
The NHFP is meant to directly benefit new home owners who struggle to find available cash to purchase a long-term mortgage and increase incomes for Nigerian families through the creation of new jobs. However, in order to ensure the full implementation of the program, the Federal Government under the NHFP recently rose to the occasion by launching ‘My Own Home’ Scheme to enlighten those seeking to own houses of theirs across the country on how to key into the scheme and become beneficiaries.
A Social Housing Activist and International Housing Finance Specialist, Mr. Adekunle Faleti, expressing his concerns over the low rating of NHFP, said: “This is indeed a very strong disapproval, in terms of IDA lingo.”
Faleti, on his social media page, said that the programme “is failing” in Nigeria. However, he stated that it should be noted that the Nigeria Mortgage Refinance Company (NMRC) component of the project has remained very successful, largely due to the independence of the institution, its strong corporate governance and transparency of the board of directors”.
Suggesting ways of improvement, he stated that while it was true that the implementation agency is the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), there must be honest, transparency and delegation of authority to achieve meaningful and measurable success. He said: “The consultants, specialists and CBN staff working on the project must be given a free hand to perform at their peak.”