Kampala | RedPepper Digital – In an effort to improve housing standards in Uganda, Housing Finance Bank has partnered with Habitat for Humanity, Uganda Chapter and the kingdom of Buganda to construct two turnkey housing units for vulnerable families with a contribution of UGX40m to support the cause under the “decent living campaign” initiative.
The public-private partnership was formed in 2018 with various partners on board and Housing Finance joined the cause on Thursday after signing an MoU with the organization at their head offices in Kololo Kampala, that will see houses constructed for vulnerable families across all the regions of the country with Buganda and Teso sub-regions being the first two.
Michael Mugabi, the Bank’s Managing Director rallied the public to take advantage of the many mortgage financing solutions that the bank offers among which include the incremental housing solution which he says is affordable to all categories of people, with the minimal requirement of being able to earn at least UGX200,000 monthly income as he added on.
“We can enable you to acquire land given those meagre income resources that you have, previously it was a barrier but with the incremental housing solution that I spoke about, you can be able to build an affordable house.”
When asked about the cause of the 2.4 million housing deficit in the country, Mugabi had this to say: “Uganda has one of the highest population growth rates on the continent; we have one of the highest urbanization rates (5%). So the deficit is about demand and supply, while there is that increasing urbanization, high population growth rate we still don’t have enough houses coming on to the market.”
He further added that to bridge the gap, they have partnered with developers in the housing sector to increase the supply of houses that are affordable to the population.
Robert Otim; the National Director of Habitat for Humanity Uganda chapter, said that their target as an organization is to be able to impact over 60,000 Ugandans in the next five years with 10,000 low-cost houses to be constructed adding on the 40,000 that they have already constructed since they came to Uganda in 1982 that have impacted the lives of over 230,000 people.
Otim also noted that the housing deficit in the country is due to a number of factors besides high urbanization rate and population explosion where he cited the challenges real estate developers face when accessing materials for construction among others.
Present at the function were officials from Buganda kingdom led by the Speaker of the Lukiiko Owek. Patrick Luwaga Mugumbbule thanked the two partners for choosing to work with the kingdom for such a noble cause. Mugumbule further said that the gesture will go a long way in according affordable housing to the vulnerable in the kingdom.
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Peace Kabunga, the Bank’s executive director also reiterated the call to make housing affordable to every Ugandan as enshrined in the National development plan 3 (NDP III) in supporting sustainable and transformational development which she says begins with a roof over one’s head i.e. decent and affordable housing as a human right. Globally, over 1.6 billion people lack affordable housing, and on the African continent there is a housing deficit of 50.5 million according to data from th