Lagos Identifies 169 Slums, Plans Regeneration for Eight
The Lagos State Urban Renewal Agency (LASURA) has revealed that a total of 169 slums have been identified across Lagos, with plans to regenerate eight of them. Adeola Olagoke, the Head of Public Affairs at LASURA, shared this information during an exclusive discussion with The PUNCH at the agency's office in Lagos State.
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The identified slum communities include Badia, Magbon, Obawole Agege, Olusosun, Alaba Rago, Obun Eko, Makoko, among others. Among these, 49 have been mapped out, including areas such as Mazamaza, Agidingbi, and Otunmara, while 12 have been profiled, which includes Ipodo, Isale Oja, and parts of Oregun.
Additionally, 16 slum communities have been declared as such in national dailies. Of these, eight have been earmarked for regeneration, which includes parts of Alausa, Olusosun, Bariga, and others.In June 2023, Professor Taibat Lawanson, an expert in Urban Management and Governance at the University of Lagos, disclosed that the city had over 157 slum communities in need of attention.
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This information was compiled by the Committee on Slum Identification and panel by the Lagos State Urban Renewal Agency and the Nigerian Slum/Informal Settlement Federation.Femi Oyedele, the Managing Director of Fame Oyster & Co. Nigeria, stressed the importance of regenerating slums in bridging the housing deficit gap in the state.
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He explained that slums, despite their squalid conditions, are often strategically located near Central Business Districts or commercial precincts. According to him, slum regeneration is essential for optimizing these areas.Adeola Adenikinju, in the book 'Bridging Housing Deficit in Nigeria: Lessons from other jurisdictions,' highlighted that slums tend to develop around economic hubs, making slum regeneration a crucial solution for eradicating slums and addressing housing deficits. The housing deficit in Nigeria is estimated to be between 17 million to 28 million, with over 150 slums in Lagos alone, housing more than 20 million people, according to a report by Human Rights Watch and Justice and Empowerment Initiative.Estate surveyor Olorunyomi Alatise emphasized the need for urban slum revitalization, particularly the redevelopment of these areas.
He noted that sensitization and fair compensation would be essential to encourage slum dwellers to vacate their properties for redevelopment. Affordability concerns should also be addressed to ensure the success of slum redevelopment initiatives in mitigating housing deficits.