Accra, Oct. 5, GNA - Mr Samuel Atta Akyea, Minister of Works and Housing
has stated that government would partner the private sector in the provision of
affordable housing units to address the housing deficit in the country.
According to him, the Ministry is implementing the Affordable Housing Programme with the aim of providing adequate, decent and affordable housing, particularly for the low and middle-income groups.
Mr Atta Akyea made this known in Parliament on the occasion of this year’s World Habitat Day.
The theme adopted by Ghana for this year’s celebration is “Housing Policies: Affordable Homes”.
The World Habitat Day was first observed in 1985 as an international event to reflect on the state of human settlement and the basic right to adequate shelter for all.
This year’s celebrations are quite special as they coincide with the first anniversary of the New Urban Agenda adopted in Habitat III in Quito, Ecuador.
Mr Atta Akyea also noted that, recognising low income levels as a challenge on the demand side of housing in Ghana, government is adopting cost saving technologies and new technologies of construction as well as innovative mortgage financing.
He said one of the major bottlenecks facing housing delivery in Ghana is financing and as such the government is adopting a two-pronged approach to mobilizing funds both domestically and internationally to support the housing sector.
Mr Atta Akyea said government is undertaking a number of policy reforms and initiatives to ensure sustainable development of the construction industry.
“The Draft Ghana Building Code, which was enacted in 1988 has been reviewed by the Ministry and its stakeholders and is ready for adoption. The ministry is also seeking cabinet approval before the final Bill on the Condominium properties as well as waiting for cabinet’s approval and the establishment of Real Estate Agency to regulate real estate agency practice including the sale, purchase, rental and leasing of real estate and related fixed assets and to provide for connected purposes.”
He said as part of government’s effort to curb the rampant encroachment and illegal acquisition of its landed properties, the Ministry secured a grant from the Japanese government with counterpart funding from the Government of Ghana to create a database with digital images of all government landed properties using Geographic information systems (GIS).
Mr Atta Akyea further announced that the National Housing Policy (NHP) Implementation Plan is at its conclusive stage.
According to him, the document has undergone stakeholder consultative assessment, and contains strategies that would go a long way to solve the myriad of urban housing problems facing the people.
He said the policy, which is a legal housing framework for the housing value chain is intended to help government regulate the housing sector.
He explained that such legislations are meant to streamline the activities of industry players whilst at the same time ensuring professionalism.
Dr Rashid Pelpuo, Member of Parliament (MP) for Wa Central in his contribution to the statement, urged the Minister to back his pronouncement with practical measures on how to resolve the housing deficit in the country.
Mr Frank Annor Dompreh, MP for Nsawam/ Adoajiri on his part called on the Minister to address the issue of affordability since most of the housing projects undertaken by government were beyond the means of most Ghanaians.
He said for government to be able to provide affordable housing to the people it must look at the cost saving technologies and new technologies of construction.