Lagos State Governor, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode has said that a total of one million housing units are required every year between the next five to ten years to fix the deficit in providing shelter for the people.
Speaking at a round-table on infrastructure financing, Ambode said the State and indeed the country was at a critical point in history where careful assessment must be made on infrastructure deficit and deliberate actions taken to address the challenges.
While stating that the State Government was well aware of the challenges confronting it in the area of infrastructure deficit, the Governor said it was time for solid actions that would not only positively affect the livelihood of the people today, but also protect the future of the younger generations to be taken in that direction.
“We have a migration rate of 86 people moving into Lagos every hour, higher than New York, London or Mumbai; we have a population density of 6,939 persons per Kilometre and an average of 5 persons per household. With all these comes challenges and pressures on the physical and social infrastructure,” he said.
Ambode added that “Lagos State requires 1 million housing units every year for 5-10 years to fix the housing deficit. As at 2015, our State had 16,000km network of roads but with a daily human traffic of over 7.5million people and 2.8million cars.”
He added that the major issues would be how to bridge the gap in infrastructure considering the fact that revenues were not growing at the same rate as the rapidly increasing population, and that government was unwilling to increase taxes unnecessarily or tax residents to death, a development he said necessitated the discussion.
“In government, we do not have all the answers. That is the truth. That is why we are here. Our primary role as government is to be enablers. Our major responsibilities are to protect the lives and property of residents and to improve their welfare,” he said.