His Excellency, President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR, recently declined assent to the National Housing Fund (NHF) (Establishment) Bill, 2018 (“the Bill”) which was passed by the National Assembly in November 2018.
The Bill repeals the National Housing Fund Act, Cap. N45, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 (“NHF Act 2004”). The objective of the Bill is to provide additional sources of funding for effective financing of housing projects in Nigeria.
The Federal Government established the National Housing Fund (“NHF” or “the Fund”) in 1992 with the cardinal objective of mobilizing funds for provision of houses for Nigerians at affordable prices. The Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (“FMB” or “the Bank”) has the primary responsibility to manage and administer the Fund. The Bank provides long-term loans to mortgage institutions for on-lending to developers and registered participants for the purpose of building, purchasing or renovating residential houses. The Bill seeks to expand the size of the Fund by increasing the amount of contributions, introduce additional contributors, revise the amount of mandatory investment into the Fund, increase penalty for default, etc.
We have highlighted below, some of the salient provisions of the Bill:
1. Resources of the Fund
The Bill specifies the national minimum wage as the threshold for qualifying contributors to the NHF. The Bill has now included local manufacturers and importers of cement as mandatory contributors to the Fund and added Pension Fund Administrators (PFAs) to the list of mandatory investors in the Fund. Under the NHF Act 2004, the Fund’s contributors include banks, insurance companies, and Nigerians in both the public and private sectors.
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