INFRASTRUCTURAL DEVELOPMENT, REAL ESTATE AGENCY REBRANDING AND REVIEW OF NATIONAL HOUSING POLICY
1.1 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY
With a population of about 173 million people, Nigeria is the largest country in Africa and accounts for 47% of West Africa’s population. Given these large reserves of human and natural resources, the country has significant potential to build a prosperous economy characterized by rapid economic growth through real estate rebranding leading to infrastructural development that can significantly reduce poverty, inequality and improve standards of living of the population through better access to and quality of health care, education and infrastructure services (Falade, 2007). One of the organization that has been promoting real estate agency rebranding in Nigeria is The Real Estate Developer’s Association of Nigeria (REDAN) which is the principal agency of the organized private sector recognized by government and approved by the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) the apex mortgage lender in Nigeria to facilitate the delivery of affordable mass housing in Nigerians (REDAN, 2015).
Housing policy in Nigeria is as old as the history of the country. Thus, we can broadly categorize its historical development under the five distinct phases of the colonial period (before 1960), the post- independence period (1960-1979), the second civilian administration (1979-1983), the military era (1984-1999), and the post military era (1999 to date). The major characteristic of the colonial period was the provision of staff quarters for expatriates and other indigenous staff of parastatals and organizations. This era witnessed the creation of Urban Councils in 1946, the establishment of Lagos Executive Board (LEBD) in 1954, the formation of Nigerian Building Society in 1955, as well as the enactment of Regional Housing Corporation in 1959. Also, the post-independence period experienced some improvements in housing provision during the First National Development Plan period (1962-1968) and the second National Development Plan 1970-1974). Specifically, the formulation of the National Council on Housing in 1971 led to further improvement in housing delivery.