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May 21, 2018
A 4-day facilitating increased access to affordable housing through inclusive market approaches begins this morning in the conference room of the National Housing Authority, in Monrovia..
The participants include representatives of the Habitat for Humanity International (HFHI), Cities Alliance, South Africa Department of Human Settlements and the National Housing Authority.
According to the Country Director of Habitat for Humanity International (HFHI), Mr. Matthew Ndote the four-day gathering is the second phase of the project began last year which HFHI carried out assessments on how to seek support both locally and abroad to respond to upgrade slum communities of West Point and Clara Town in Montserrado County.
He said a team from the South Africa Department of Human Settlements, four representatives of HFHI from Atlanta, United States, Nairobi, Kenya and Pretoria, South Africa will participate in the meeting. The South Africa Department of Human Settlements may provide support in improving openness and transparency in the slum settlement sector, that will increase public confidence in the government in its pro-poor agenda, among other necessary support to the discussion.
The program, according to Mr. Ndote will include policy discussions with the Government of Liberia, represented by National Housing Authority, the Central Bank of Liberia, Ministry of Internal Affairs and visitations to slum communities of West Point and Clara Town. He said a consultation meeting will be held at the Young Men Christian Association (YMCA) offices on Crown Hill and also with private groups in the sector that will also include officials of the National Housing Authority. The group will also pay site visits to TVET-BWI and the Monrovia Vocational Training Center (MVTC) and hold discussions with artisans and observe their innovative housing designs, their technologies, and materials.
The team will also pay site visits to the two slum communities earmarked for the project and hold forum meetings with their representatives and to also inform them of relocation guidelines and how to make them effective at the appropriate time. Mr. Ndote said while his group does not implement projects when there is a sitting government, they join a partnership with the responsible agency, like the NHA to develop a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) and in this case, the MOU will be signed to take care of the project for the next four years.
“So, our role is to work with the NHA to assist the two slum communities to upgrade their environment and develop or build affordable housing for the people,” he stated. The current initiative is intended to bring greater Monrovia’s slum dwellers into the national development process and help them improve on the living and working conditions of the majority poor, which amounted to about seventy percent of the population.
April 23, 2018
The National Housing Authority, in collaboration with the Liberia Institute for Statistics & Geo-Information Services (LISGIS) Monday, April 23, began a three-day survey of the Township of West Point as part of NHA’s effort to upgrade the community into a modern city and put in place an ocean defense system that will protect the township from sea erosion.
At a meeting with the West Point Township officials, including commissioner William T. Dennis and community elders and youth representatives, NHA representatives re-emphasized the decision from President George Manneh Weah to, among other things, upgrade the township with improved living conditions.
The survey will include information about the number of residents in the township; any resident with any piece of a document on any piece of land that a copy should be submitted to the office of the Commissioner of the Township. Commissioner Dennis expressed appreciation to President Weah for his decision to provide better living conditions for the people of West Point and possibly change the community’s designation of a slum.
He said since the exercise was discussed in the community, many people want to know whether it is not a clever attempt by the government to evict them from their homes. West Point officials admit that the little more than 99 acres of land belonging to the Liberian government but noted that the people have resided on the land for more than 40 years. Other groups participating in the exercise are the Liberia Land Authority (LLA), the Ministry of Lands, Mines & Energy and the Ministry of Public Works.
Commissioner Dennis meanwhile recommended to the NHA that community leaders should be allowed the opportunity to get involved in the discussions about the future of West Point that are held on the radio so that they can adequately explain the nature of the exercise to those directly affected.
The NHA representatives informed him that his recommendation meant the township’s preparedness to work along with the NHA and President Weah to develop better residence for the people. The survey will document how much land belongs to the Liberian government, the number of schools, market centers, religious areas, among others. According to the NHA, it is the wish of President Weah to build a more affordable community that would transform West Point from a slum to another level where the community will have access to modern living standards.
The NHA Managing Director said the government is seeking at least US$10 million from the funder which is a pan-African finance institution created to exclusively support the development of the African real estate and housing sector. Through its strategic partnerships, it offers products and related services, which support the efficient delivery of commercial real estate and affordable housing. “The money is intended to develop about 2,000 units of affordable houses in West Point that will be exclusively given to low-income Liberians who as part of the Liberian government’s pro-poor governance agenda,” the NHA said in a statement. Other details on temporary residence during the upgrading exercise are currently being consider by the NHA but urges West Pointers not to panic during the exercise.
May 16, 2018
The Management of the National Housing Authority (NHA) has with immediate effect placed a stay order on all extension and construction works in the form of alteration / modification at the various housing estates under the direct mandate and supervision.
The call for said stop order exercise came in the wake of numerous complaints from residents of these housing estates as management conducted an independent investigation and found out that said information about extension and construction works was confirmed and has decided to place a stay order indefinitely.
In the same vein, the NHA Management is reminding tenants about the stipulations in the tendency guidelines they dully signed which states that before any alteration or modifications are done to any of the unit, they must meet the approval of the NHA Management through a written communication
The National Housing Authority said it will provide technical advice to anyone interested in any extension or modification of their units. The NHA said the beauty of the estates, as originally constructed need to be maintained by residents. The NHA management wants to encourage all residents of the various housing estates to abide by the regulations enshrined in the guidelines to ensure a smooth working relationship with its Management.
The Housing Estates in question are New Georgia Estate, E. J. Goodridge, (Barnersville) Stephen A. Tolbert, Old and New Matadi, NASSCORP Village, and Ben Town. Meanwhile, the NHA Management said it has instituted an inspectorate Division charged with the responsibility to consistently monitor it estates, vacant land and other assets across the country to ensure no illegal land sale, easements or encroachment occurred.
The NHA is therefore sending a team of inspectorates to visit all those mentioned estates with a view to dialogue with tenants and other residents to promote the government’s pro-poor agenda that places the interest of Liberian citizens above the simple desire to make money. Anyone caught violating this pronouncement will be charged a penalty up to USD$500 or it’s equivalent and that said easement will be destroyed accordingly.
May 16, 2018
When President George Weah gave his inauguration address to the nation, upon his election, he did not mince his words about the intention of his government. He told thousands of eager listening Liberians that in a philosophical nutshell, the “Struggle of the people must end.”
That conclusion or ending of the struggle of the people, was predicated upon the long time help declaration, even as far back of 1979, which was exploited by emerging political organizations, including the Progressive People’s Alliance (PAL) and the Movement for Democracy for Africa (MOJA) that the struggle for economic and political emancipation should continue.
Because at the time the political and to a larger extent the economy of the country was not in the hands of the people, and now without doubt while the efforts to control the economy has been slow with challenges, political power is obviously in the hands of the people.
Therefore, according to President George Weah, while the political struggle is with the people, with the reference to the overwhelming welcome of his election, his government would lead the vanguard to ensure economic emancipation and that way we can say that ‘In the cause of the people, the struggle must end.’
Ending the people’s struggle has several phases: Finding jobs for the thousands who are unemployed that could improve their living standards, through affordable provision of infrastructure, and also the demonstration of confidence in the political establishment as the people no longer struggle but to join each other to march forward in building a viable economy, infrastructure, among others in the country.
And this leads to the objective of this article as it concerns the realization of the goal of the National Housing Authority (NHA) consistent with President George Weah’s mandate to provide an affordable housing for Liberians in the low-income bracket to own their homes. In this country, people take pride in the dignity that one has his or her home. In fact, man’s existence is the ability to provide life’s basic necessities, including a secure accommodation to lay your head.
The NHA under Hon. Duannah Siryon is working to realize the objective to ensure that a low-cost housing, around US$15,000 is available for Liberians to own a decent home that includes a master bedroom, a living room, a kitchen and a living room. Hon. Siryon has held several important meetings with groups from La Cote d’Ivoire, Nigeria and Dubai to make that happen.
“The President’s objective is to ensure that slum communities are upgraded,” Hon. Siryon says, “and we can get that done when we work with partners in West Africa and elsewhere to seal the best agreements that would not place any future financial burden on the government and the people.” The first group that expressed interest in constructing affordable housing towards the government’s agenda came from Shelter Afrique, a pan-African finance institution that exclusively supports the development of the housing and real estate sector in Africa.
It is a partnership of 44 African Governments, the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the Africa Reinsurance Company, that Shelter Afrique builds strategic partnerships and offers a host of products and related services to support the efficient delivery of affordable housing and commercial real estate. Their support also includes project finance, institutional lending, equity investments & joint ventures, trade finance, and social housing and also offers practical advice and technical assistance to a wide range of industry stakeholders.
The NHA completed a concert document and presented it to President Weah who would attend a regular meeting with Shelter Afrique to make a case for Liberia to get the government’s pro-poor agenda and its housing sector moving forward. Meanwhile, Hon. Siryon attended additional meetings in Abidjan, La Cote d’Ivoire and Nigeria.
March 20, 2018
Hon. Duannah Siryon, Managing Director NHA welcomes and commended representatives of the Disaster Victims Association of Liberia (DVAL) who paid an acquaintance visit at his Capitol Hill’s office on Tuesday, March 20, 2018.
According to a press release, the visitors, included Mr. Othello M. Musah, Abraham V. Conneh, chairman on membership, S. Pantee Swen, head of sanitation, Madam Finda Johnson, chairlady and James J. Korvah, secretary general.
The spokesperson of the group Mr. Othello Musah told the NHA MD that they were happy to have an acquaintance meeting with him since his appointment by President George M. Weah.
Musah narrated the previous working relationship with past administration and has come to jump start similar approach for continuity Musah said with a smile. He also revealed during the meeting that there exists a pressing situation that is currently ongoing and required the immediate attention management between they as Disasters Victims Association and Hon. Soko Wiles commissioner of the Township of Brewerville. Musah explained that when they were forced to be resettled in the VOA Community, Commissioner Wiles offered a place to stay while habitation was being prepared by the National House Authority.
After some time according to him Commissioner Wiles decided to ask them to leave the property for an unknown reason according to Musah. He said the situation did not go well with them but anyhow they had to leave. Later, he said a burglary occurred when most of their properties were stolen and therefore the case was forwarded to the NHA for redress. For his part, Hon. Siryon admitted running across such a complaint in that nature and forwarded same to his deputy managing director for administration, Mr. Tugbeh C. Tugbeh to amiably find resolution between the commissioner office and the Disasters Victim Association which he has already begun.
Hon. Siryon meanwhile recommended that since the case was already being looked into, he would allow that to go on and would wait and if his involvement was necessary, he would intervene in the matter. He thereafter congratulated the representatives of the Disaster Victims Association of Liberia for using the legal means to handle their situation and assured them that they would work together for their common good. Hon. Siryon said he was planning an extensive tour of NHA communities across the country and would make further contact with them when the time comes.
“It is because of you that I am employed to be here,” Hon. Siryon told them. “So don’t hesitate to come to me whenever you need me.” The Disaster Victims Association of Liberia has a membership of over 7,000 and they include kids, women, disabled, old men and women. The organization was formed following erosion that swept hundreds of their homes away in the Township of West Point. The membership includes Liberians who have become sea erosion victims across the country. The Township of West Point in Monrovia, hosts their headquarters he concluded.
March 20, 2018
The National Housing Authority (NHA), according to the Act that established it, among others, is charged to build affordable homes for Liberians. Taking over as its new Managing Director and with support from the Deputy Managing Director for Administration, Hon. Tugbeh C. Tugbeh, Hon. Duannah Siryon has been reviewing the NHA’s immediate targets and how to work out an effective plan to attain the objectives.
The most immediate objectives are: The establishment of an ocean defense system to protect West Point and overcome the difficulties in relations to the erosion due to negative effects of climate change, the completion of 108 homes (54 duplexes) to resettle the 64 family heads from West Point who, are already in temporary homes in VOA and the construction of 2,000 units in West Point for low-income Liberians.
“President George Weah feels passionate about the situation in West Point and therefore he gave the NHA a mandate to work along with our partners to make sure that there is some relief in the shortest possible time for our people,” Hon. Siryon said.
As a result of the NHA recently welcomed an official of Shelter Afrique, also known as Company for Habitat and Housing in Africa, toured West Point and outlined the Liberian government’s priority project to find relief for the residents by securing a US$10million to build 2,000 affordable homes for the people. The Shelter Afrique’s official (SAF), Mr. Zachary Munene, expressed interest in helping Liberia to secure the amount as its support to developing the housing sector of Liberia, through the National Housing Authority, (NHA). The NHA’s partnership with Shelter Afrique (SAF) is interesting since Liberia is a member of the body but has not received or applied for any benefits as a member. The SAF is a pan-African finance institution created to exclusively support the development of the African real estate and housing sector and also offers products and related services which support the efficient delivery of commercial real estate and affordable housing.
The NHA and President Weah’s initiatives have been welcomed by West Point residents who said they are not surprised at President Weah’s passionate support to change West Point for the better. “President Weah is a leader who cares about us and that is why we have always supported him,” said James Weah, who resides in West Point. The West Point project has been welcomed by any resident who is told about it and many of them see it as the best option, particularly the ocean defense system to save the remaining habitable land in the township. Many other applaud President’s decision to build 2,000 affordable homes for them and prayed that God should bless him because he wants the better for the community.
Another group that demonstrates appreciation for the president and the NHA leadership is the 64 family heads who are presently in temporary homes in VOA, near Brewerville, waiting for the 108 units to be completed for them to be resettled in them. At a visit to VOA, many expressed appreciation for the 108 Units (54 Duplexes) that they are waiting to be completed. “I am happy that I came over to VOA,” said Mr. David Broh, coordinator of Disaster of Liberia (DVAL), organized in January 2018, with membership from the 60 family heads in the community. “Today I have a small farm that I take care of my son and so within several months I will be harvesting to take care of myself and my family.” Broh said he lost three houses in West Point and believes that the provision of an ocean defense system could prevent additional homes from being destroyed by the erosion. “I am happy to be in VOA,” he said.
West Point residents are also excited about the ocean defense system and the upgrading of the community with 2,000 new affordable units, as they are being worked out by President Weah with partners through the NHA management. “We have lived here for many years and we will be glad to make this place our home,” said a long time resident William Jarboh. Another booming area that has drawn greater interest is the popular NASSCORP Village, where 163 two-bedroom units in three phases have been completed and rented out. “It is a relief for me to get this home,” said a resident of NASSCORP Village in Brewerville, outside Monrovia. “Today I own my own home and I am happy about it.” As the Liberian government pursues its pro-poor agenda, the management of the NHA is determined to reach its goal of easing the residential difficulties for the majority poor.
Of course, the NASSCORP Village came out of a tripartite agreement with the Liberia Bank for Development and Investment, the National Social Security and Welfare Corporation (NASSCORP) and the National Housing Authority. Though a house in the sector is priced at US$20,000 with a US$4,000 cash deposit and the rest paid through a mortgage agreement through the LBDI for 10 years, the pro-poor government of President George Manneh Weah realizes that not many Liberians can afford it. The 4th phase of around 70 housing units should begin soon but with a lesser cost of the unit. Hon. Siryon believes that with the speed of which offers are being sent from international partners and housing estates companies, it will not be too soon when the government’s objective is realized with affordable homes for the Liberian poor.
March 20, 2018
Several State-Owned Enterprises and other agencies located near the Executive Mansion grounds in Monrovia Thursday, March 22, held a meeting with the objective of embarking on making each other’s acquaintance as well as finding solutions to ensure effective security and improving on the environment.
The meeting, held in the conference room of the NHA discussed issues such as security, how to ensure effective flow of water to the facilities from the Liberia Water & Sewer Corporation (LW&SC), and how to clean the environment.
Heading the discussion was the managing director of the National Housing Authority (NHA), Hon. Duannah Siryon who upon taking over the NHA saw how urgently the environment needed to be cleaned and therefore invited representatives of SOEs and other agencies of government to the meeting.
Hon. Siryon said the idea for the meeting stemmed from security concerns that he has observed needed reorganization and cooperation with other SOEs’ on the compound.
“We want to end this meeting to be able to come up with how we can get to know each other and more importantly come to conclusions that could help all of us make our compound better,” Hon. Siryon said. Meanwhile, Mr. James Fromoyan, Chairman of the Liberia National Commission on Small Arms, welcomed the initiative, and admitted that it was necessary for such a healthy discussion to take place and promised his organization’s support. It was also agreed that a technical committee should be set up, including representatives of all the SOEs and other agencies to draw up a plan, among others, to get the assistance of the Ministry of Public Works, and the Liberia Water & Sewer Corporation as well as deciding to carry out a large-scale cleaning campaign to put the environment in proper order.
A representative of the security sector noted that it was necessary for the EPS officers to respect any of the security agencies that are operating in the compound so that they can achieve their objective to provide efficient security to everyone at the compound. At the end of the meeting, the representatives expressed appreciation to Hon. Siryon for his farsightedness to cite the group together to pursue a common action that may lead to the security improvement on the compound, improved water supply from the LW&SC and a cleaner environment. They said there had been recent burglary at the compound and therefore the gathering was necessary.
Among the representatives at the meeting were the Liberia Agency for Community Empowerment (LACE), Executive Protective Service (EPS), National Authorizing Officer- Ministry of Finance and Development Planning (NAO-MFDP), Liberia Institute of Statistics and Geo-Information Services (LISGIS) the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Liberia National Commission on Small Arms (LINCSA). Meanwhile, other SOEs that will be invited for the second meeting on April 5, 2018 at LACE’s conference room will be representatives from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ministry of State and the Public Procurement and Concessions Commission (PPCC).
National Housing Authority is a government of Liberia Agency created by Act of Lagislature in 1960 intended to provide low income housing
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