The Trade Union Congress (TUC) has commended the Federal Government on waiver of the initial payment of 10 per cent housing equity on mortgages below N5 million from housing off-takers.

Mr Bobboi Kaigama, TUC President gave the commendation on Monday in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja.

The Federal Government had recently approved that henceforth mortgages below N5million (five million naira) will not attract the initial payment of 10 per cent equity from offtakers.

According to him, this is to demonstrate its commitment to the provision of affordable housing to Nigerians, especially the low income earners.

Bobboi noted that the waiver was a welcome development, especially in this period of economic recession being experienced in the country.

“The government is using the same fund contributed by workers to build houses for them, if it can as well give out houses at much lower rate it will be nice development because it is workers’ contribution.

“The Federal Government has no contribution in the fund and the worker’s representatives do not have a say on how the funds are being managed,” he said.

Commending the effort of the government, he said that it needed to do more in the course of delivering houses to Nigerians.

The TUC president said that the number of houses that have been delivered to workers since the constitution of the National Housing Fund (NHF) programme was not impressive compared to the percentage of workers contributing to the fund.

He, however, called for an urgent review of the NHF law, adding that the representatives of Nigerian workers should also be allowed to be on the board of the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN).

According to him, being board members will make the representatives to be able to contribute and moderate the cost of housing units compared to the contributors’ salaries.

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