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Depositors seek inclusion in federal housing schemes

Worried about possible exclusion from completed Federal Government Housing schemes, contributors who are yet to receive letters of allocations have called for inclusion in finished schemes. The affected depositors, who commenced payment for the federal government housing projects since 1994, urged President Muhammadu Buhari to use his good office to ask the Minister of Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola to consider them first in the schemes which are ready for commission.

Recalling their ordeals, one of the depositors, Prof. Bola Akinterinwa said, he paid for three-bedroom bungalow, semi-detached in 1994 but hasn’t get allocation for the building. “It was supposed to cost only N200, 000 at that time. The deposit was N40, 000. “What eventually happened was that when Lateef Jakande was removed as the minister of housing and the late Brigadier General Abdulkareem Adisa succeeded him, he rubbished the whole thing, stressing that it was not possible for anyone to build a house for N200, 000. But Lateef Jakande said it was possible. Adisa said the category of the house that he was interested in, will now cost N800, 000. “So the deposit also increased from N40, 000 to N160, 000. That was how I had to look for money and paid. My own is supposed to be in Festac Town, Lagos. Up till this January 2020, there is no allocation”, he said.

Another depositor, Prof. Victor Ariole, a lecturer at the University of Lagos, recalled that N74, 000 was taken as a deposit on January 1996 against what it was in 1994 because it was said that the initial deposit was small when Adisa took over. “The first time I went to the Federal Housing Authority, (FHA) Abuja during the government of Umaru Musa Yar’Adua, they said that I should bring N8 million for accommodation in Abuja. Where will I get the N8 million? If they say the new house is ten million the money I paid that time was 20 percent. That would be about 2 million. So they should allow us to pay the rest on the mortgage. Not to balance in cash.”

“At the time they took the money, housing materials were not as costly as they are now. If the military government was oppressing its citizens why will it not be corrected by a civilian government?”For Mr. Ijidakinro Adesemoye, he lamented that payment allocation was made for his brother and himself in 1994 for the housing program.

“We paid N80, 000, they said we should open an account at Federal Mortgage Bank Lagos.” He appealed to the government to please include them in the housing program.“We cannot be talking about refund now. We want the government to give us the houses. They should consider the value of the money that we paid for that time. They should give us a priority in their housing program.” He stressed that in places like the United States, allocations for government-assisted houses, are usually without any form of delay.

source: Debo Oladimeji

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