INSTITUTIONAL BARRIERS TO SUSTAINABLE URBAN HOUSING DEVELOPMENT IN LAGOS
Practical field work and analysis.
The twenty-first century has been defined as the urban century characterised by more than half of the world’s population living in towns and cities. The demographic movement to the majority of urbanised states is expected to be reached before (WUP 2005) and in Africa not before 2030. The trend, however, is clear with ‘the urban’ continuously outgrowing ‘the rural’ in terms of housing infrastructure and amenities. In the next two decades, cities in the developing world will absorb 95% of urban growth (UN-Habitat, 2006). Moreover, the rapid rates of urbanization have led to the growth of megacities of over 10 million in developing countries. In 1975, there were three megacities in the world: Tokyo, New York and Mexico City. In 2005, there were 20 such cities, 16 of which were located in the developing world (WUP 2005). Nigeria is the most urbanized and largest population of black in sub-Sahara Africa. In its last official census in 1963, Nigeria’s population was 55.6 million. In 1973, it was estimated to be 79.7 million; in 1983, 90 million and in 1986 close to 106 million, in 2006 it was 160 million and currently Nigeria population is estimated to be 180 million. All of this population resides in a land area roughly equal to California and Arizona combined. Urban areas represent less than 10% of the land area of the country, yet accommodate 28% of the population. The urban growth rate is 3 to 5 times greater than the rural growth rate (Okaye, 2009). Throughout the country of Nigeria, the annual urban growth rate is estimated to be between 6 and 10% (Olotuah & Bobadoye, 2000; Oladunjoye, 2005). However, Nigeria has a large and ever-increasing housing deficit which stood at approximately 8 million housing units in 1991 and 12-14 million housing units in 2007 and, also a more recent estimate puts the figure even higher at 16-17 million housing units (Akeju,2007; Aikhorin, 2008). At an average cost of N2.5 million per housing unit, Nigeria would require N35 tri ck of adequate political will by the government to deal with the housing problem (Akomolafe, 2007llion to fund a housing deficit of 14 million housing units. The situation is worsened by the high incidence of corruption in all other relevant sectors of the Nigeria economy and the la). Consequently, the 21st Century Nigeria Inherited a serious problem of inadequate housing, resulting from many years of neglect, underdeveloped housing finance system, limited supply of long term funds, low household income levels, high unemployment, high inflation rate, high interest rate on mortgages, high cost of land and building materials, poor planning and poor implementation of housing policies and programmes, existence of administrative bottlenecks That make the processing and securing of approvals for building plans, certificate of occupancy and other necessary government permits very difficult, and the unmitigated corruption in the allocation government land within the frame work of the Land Use Act, cap. 202 LFN 1990 (Ogwu, 2006; Onyike, 2007). However, Nigeria at large has an ever-increasing housing deficit which stood at approximately 8 million housing units in 1991 and 12-14 million housing units in 2007. Another estimate puts the figure even higher to be between 16-17 million housing units (Akeju, 2007; Aikhorin, 2008; Sombo, 2007; Uroko & Akintola, 2008). On the basis of an average cost of construction, N2.5 million per housing unit, Nigeria would require N42.5 trillion to fund a housing deficit of 17milllion housing units. Therefore, the need to substantiate the effort of government by private housing sector to augment the deficit is therefore bedevilled by institutional barriers and further handicapped the effort of private bodies and individuals to make up the deficit. The aim of this paper is to examine the various institutional barriers confronting private housing development and how they stand as challenges to private housing developers and finally to identify the ways forward toward achieving sustainable urban housing development.
- Staff Articles8226