By Al-hameen Hussein
As part of ongoing efforts in bridging over 22 million housing deficit in the country, Echostone Nigeria Limited has signed a joint development agreement with the Nigerian Police to develop 100,000 homes for its officer nationwide at the total cost of N750 billion.
Over time, stakeholders have been lamenting over an increase in the housing shortage, but with the emergence of Echostone in Nigeria, through its various partnerships with state governments, government agencies, and the most recent with the Nigerian Police is believed that there will be changes in Nigerians social lives, economically and even the financial status of the police officers.
For instance, the police, presently lack decent accommodation for its officers and men, as is visibly evident in the condition of most Police barracks. The more worrisome is that most policemen in Nigeria work and retire without having a home to spend the rest of their life.
Under the agreement, the Nigerian Police Property Development Company (NPPDC) will provide the land and Echostone will serve as the developer. The Nigerian Police Force Mortgage Bank (NPFMB) will provide the mortgage facility and the off-takers. The project consists of a one, two and three-bedroom homes, built to the highest quality standard and in a very beautiful environment with parks, gardens, schools and shops.
Every estate will be provided with infrastructures such as paved roads, drainages, water, power (on and off-grid) and sewage systems and treatments.
The Deputy Inspector General of Police (DIG), Taiwo Lakanu stated that the homes, which will be built over five to seven years period, will have the highest social impact on the families and lives of all policemen.
He, however, called on the parties involved in the agreement to be committed to fulfilling their part for the success of the affordable housing programme.
The Managing Director, Police Property Company, Rudolph Obe said the IGP’s approval of the massive housing programme for police officers and men is direct economic empowerment and huge morale booster that will have a serious impact on the security of lives and prosperity.
He added, “the men will be highly motivated to do more in their sacrifices for the nation.”
On his part, the Managing Director, Nigerian Police Force Mortgage Bank (NPFMB), Suleiman Abubakar stated that the homes will come with mortgages of up to 25 years and an interest rate of only six per cent per annum.
“Some policemen who cannot qualify for a mortgage immediately will benefit from the rental housing programme with an option to buy,” he explained.
Director at Echostone, Mr Sammy Adigun, said the intention of the agreement is to help policemen and women own their homes in their chosen location nationwide.
He stressed that “When our men and women are comfortable and motivated, they will perform better and be more committed to the difficult and challenging work of policing the nation.
“The Nigerian Police Force is the single largest employer in the Nigerian economy and this project when achieved, would be a major boost to the economy, the welfare of our police officers have a very high social impact.”
“Echostone is the only IFC EDGE (World Bank) Certified (Green) developer in Nigeria, which gives the Police huge confidence in the quality of homes that they will be getting from Echostone,” he said.
Also, the Founder/ CEO, Echostone International, Anthony Recchia said the property development company will be mobilising local and international partners to achieve the project seamlessly.
It would be recalled that Echostone already has an existing agreement with Family Homes Fund (FHF) and the Nigerian Mortgage Refinancing Company (NMRC) to facilitate the development of hundreds of thousands of homes all over the country.
Echostone, also recently signed with the Federal Integrated Staff Housing Scheme an agreement to develop 15,000 homes.