Summary: Interactive Workshop on Housing and Co-Operatives Societies

One-day free interactive workshop on housing and co-operatives societies held at the faculty boardroom, faculty of environmental sciences, University of Lagos, Akoka, Lagos on thursday, 21st july 2016. 

The one-day free interactive workshop was organised by the University of Lagos Centre for Housing and Sustainable Development, with the main purpose of ascertaining the critical challenges facing co-operative societies that have decided to intervene in the housing needs of their members.  The intervention of co-operatives cut across various levels of activities: providing loans for land acquisition, loans for construction activities, purchasing land and even direct housing development. Thus the title of the workshop “Supporting Co-operative from Land Acquisition to Housing Construction: Tackling the Critical Challenges.” 

The well attended workshop was held for co-operative leaders in Lagos State.  There were two major sessions:

The first session was an interactive discussion session between co-operatives that have acquired land, co-operatives that have built housing units and those that are looking to purchase land for housing purposes for their members. The animated discussion helped cooperative members to learn from the experiences of each other. This session lasted for about three hours and several issues were raised. The cooperative societies agreed that one of the major problems they faced in the housing sector is the activities of local land owners popularly known as ‘Omo-oniles’, who tend to elicit multiple payments for land and also resell lands that have not been built upon. The slow documentation process for acquired lands was also an issue raised, and co-operatives were eager for the state government to have a special window for land registration for co-operative societies. 

Another problem identified was lack of finance in sufficient volumes to start building construction as well as low income of the membership of cooperatives. 

In the second session, Barrister Akintoye Adeoye, the National General Secretary of the Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria (REDAN) encouraged cooperatives to work in collaboration with REDAN members in the housing supply process; while Professor T. G. Nubi, Director of Studies University of Lagos Centre for Housing and Sustainable Development and convener of the workshop, urged cooperative societies to engage the right professionals in their quest to assist members in homeownership. He also reiterated that the University of Lagos Centre for Housing and Sustainable Development is ready to support cooperatives societies by providing necessary training in the real estate sector; linking them with professionals, carrying out action research in the area of cooperative housing.   

In his words “…Herein the Centre, you have a shoulder to lean on. Let us work together to reengineer the Lagos State housing sector.” 

Cross section of participants

Cross section of participants