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13.10.2008 General News

$10m Released For Workers Housing

By Clement Atagra -

THE government has released 10 million dollars to the  HFC Bank Limited as a revolving fund for the Public Sector Employees Housing Scheme.

Under the scheme, public sector workers can access up to GH¢25,000 to complete or purchase their own houses.

The Minister of Water Resources, Works and Housing, Alhaji Abubakar Saddique Boniface, announced this last Friday, at a news conference to brief the media on the housing situation in the country, as well as the draft housing policy.

He said many investors had shown interest in providing houses for Ghanaians and the Ministry had signed a memorandum  of understanding with the prospective investors in that regard.

“Some of the proposals are quite advanced”, he said, naming  the four companies as the Renaissance Management Group of the U.S.A which is to invest  250 million dollars, and Sithru Mhalysia, 120 million dollars.

Alhaji Boniface said the Ministry had sourced 50,000 acres of land in the Greater Accra Region and some regional and district  capitals for the National Housing Programme and the associated infrastructure development.

“The main objective is to establish land bank systems to facilitate the access to land by developers”, he said.

The Minister said about 325 local  contractors had been engaged on the government's affordable housing projects in all the six sites, namely Borteyman, Nungua, Kpone, Asokore-Mampong in Kumasi, Koforidua, Tamale and Wa, all estimated at  GH¢52.67 million.

He said a total of 5,162 units were under construction and at various stages of completion.

“It is also intended to build a total  of 600 housing units under the  first phase in the remaining six regional capitals”, he assured.

On the draft National Housing Policy, he said the Ministry was awaiting a report from the Environmental Protection Agency on the strategic environmental assessment for unward submission to Cabinet.

He said “the government envisions a country in which everyone is able to access good quality, affordable, secure and appropriate housing scheme.