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UK’s Chartered Institute of Housing Visits Nigeria to Brainstorm with Stakeholders

Mr. Roger Keller

By Eric Ojo

A representative of the Chartered Institute of Housing (CIH) in United Kingdom (UK), Mr. Roger Keller, will visit Nigeria next week to interact and brainstorm with professional colleagues and stakeholders in the housing sector of the Nigerian economy.

Mr. Roger Keller

Mr. Roger Keller

The Institute which currently has over 22,000 members and operates in more than 20 countries where courses in Housing are provided at undergraduate and post graduate levels, equally has a good number of Nigerians based in the UK in its membership.

The visit of Mr. Keller, who is the Head of Education of the Institute, is the result of several years of excellent collaboration between the Nigeria-UK Housing Society (NUHS) and its Nigerian counterpart, the African Housing Professionals Association of Nigeria (AHPAN) and the University of Lagos.

Keller will be hosted by the Faculty of Environmental Sciences of the University of Lagos, on Monday 2ndof December and the event will also mark the official opening of the Centre of Excellence for Housing Studies, which is based in the Faculty of Environmental Sciences at the Akoka campus of the university.

The event will equally provide a platform for CIH to consult with key stakeholders on the specification for CIH membership for Africa.

The visit by the CIH Head of Education, according to a statement signed by Akintokunbo Adejumo,

Country Director, NUHS, is an important step towards the accreditation of CIH courses at the Centre, which will lead to the internationally recognised CIH professional qualifications and membership.

The statement added that Keller will also travel to Abuja on the 3rd of December to meet with key stakeholders there, adding that the audience scheduled to discuss with him while in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) include, university lecturers, students, officers of Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria, (REDAN), Federal Mortgage Bank (FMB), Federal Housing Authority (FHA) and other key stakeholders.

The statement further explained that officers, consultants, and members of NUHS from the UK will be in attendance at the meetings, adding that Keller will also be meeting with stakeholders in Ghana on 4th and 5th of December.

The statement said NUHS and AHPAN are keen to expand the Chartered Membership of CIH to Africa and to increase capacity in the housing management and estate development sectors, noting that there are a number of institutions that focus specifically on Housing across the world.

“However, our research has confirmed that in Nigeria, there is a gap in Housing approach to ensure built communities conform to a standard format, which is essential for robust Housing Management. This vacuum needed to be filled as a matter of urgency and this challenge has been embraced by patriotic Housing professionals of Nigerian origin, resident in the United Kingdom; many of who hold/have held very senior and executive positions in the Housing sector in England.

“As Chartered CIH qualified members of Nigerian origin begin to return home, plans are being made to establish the Nigerian Institute of Housing (NIH) to become an active professional membership organisation along with other built environment professional bodies in the country e.g. the NIA, the NIESV, Chartered Quantity Surveyors, Chartered Builders etc. This will greatly support the Government’s announcement that 1 million homes will be built annually over the next few years in order to meet the 16 million national housing shortage.

“Our vision started a few years ago when the two Co-Founders – Ade Aderogba MBE and Alhaji Nojeem Jimoh – met at the 2007 CIH annual conference in England.  They decided to establish NUHS and invited several Nigerian UK-based housing professionals to join them – there are over 500 CIH members of Nigerian origin in the UK.

“The NUHS vision was further advanced when NUHS made an application for funding to AfDB through DTCA/Nigeria’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Abuja.  The successful award of funding led to the establishment of the African Housing Professionals Association of Nigeria, to deliver the project in Africa”, the statement disclosed.

It also noted that AHPAN was set up to develop and improve professional housing standards in the sub-Saharan region of Africa and that AHPAN is affiliated to NUHS as its founding body.  The organisation, the statement added, is successfully obtained funding from the African Development Bank (AfDB), through the Department for Technical Cooperation in Africa (DTCA) of the Federal Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Abuja, to develop Housing Centres of Excellence in Nigeria and Ghana; in partnership with the UK Chartered Institute of Housing.

“AHPAN also seeks to work with housing professionals in Uganda, Kenya and South Africa. The principal partners in the pilot project funded by the AfDB include the University of Lagos (Nigeria) and Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (Ghana).

The Housing Centre of Excellence at the University of Lagos is the first operational centre funded with the AfDB grant and provides the model for other Housing Centres of Excellence under the project”, the statement stressed.

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