Estate surveyors and valuers in the country have appealed to the National Assembly to accelerate the passage of the social housing bill, which is presently at the Senate.
A bill seeking to provide houses for the poor as a social service with the government picking part of the cost through the provision of land and infrastructure is presently before at the National Assembly.
Senior members of the real estates surveying and valuation profession made the call during the recent induction of new practitioners by the Estate Surveyors and Valuers Registration Board of Nigeria in Lagos.
According to them, the enactment of a law on social housing will compel all tiers of government to play a vital role in housing the poor and the vulnerable, and help in no small measure in bridging the estimated 16 million-unit housing deficit in the country.
Eleh said government owed it a duty to accommodate all the citizens by providing for the poor and creating the right environment for those who could to build on their own, noting that the British government was providing council flats for the low income earners.
The Chairman, ESVARBON, Mr. Ayodele Sangosanya, also supported the passage of the bill, adding that the board and estate surveyors made inputs during its public hearing on May 28, 2012 in Abuja.
"The need for social housing is long overdue if housing for all by the year 2020 is anything to come by. The board is ready to offer whatever assistance is necessary to the National Assembly to ensure that the bill is passed into law," Sangosanya said.
He said the board regularly held interactive sessions with executives and members of state branches of NIESV to ensure that a greater number of members appreciated its duties and responsibilities, and to also get them understand their roles in certain areas, particularly in checkmating quacks and ensuring that practitioners were not denied the positions meant for them in government parastatals and tertiary institutions.
Sangosanya commended members of the Education Committee of ESVARBON, who despite logistic constraints, had continued to inspect tertiary institutions offering estate management and valuation to ensure that high level of tutorial was being offered the students.
He said with induction of the 97 newly registered estate surveyors and valuers, the number of professionals licensed to practice in the country was now 2,888.
Sangosanya said, "In view of the fact that this figure is still a far cry from adequacy when compared to the national population of over 160 million, the present management of the board is determined to find ways and means of producing many more registered estate and valuers as quickly as possible without lowering standards.
"To achieve this objective, in conjunction with the Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers, we are working out modalities for accelerating the registration of estate surveyors and valuers in Nigeria."
The ESVARBON chairman advised the newly registered valuers to appreciate that the stamp, seal and certificate awarded them during the induction ceremony were properties of the board, which reserved the right to withdraw them at any time if abused.
He added that the rules and regulations of the board should be the guide for them and that the violation of these would not be tolerated.
"Therefore, the ethics and ethos of the profession should be carefully guarded by all and sundry. May I emphasise at this juncture that integrity is the hallmark of success of every professional; so, it should be consciously protected with the fear of God," he said.
In a charge to the newly registered valuers, a Fellow of NIESV, Mr. Olatunde Adegbemile, said they were expected to make a difference in the society by broadening their scope and diversifying into many areas instead of focusing only on the agency aspect of the profession which, he noted, had been invaded by all comers and quacks.
Eleh also urged the new professionals to consider forming large firms with many competencies so as to fit into the dynamics of the modern business environment, adding that NIESV and ESVARBON were already considering the use of pseudo names by estate surveying and valuation firms.