Mrs Freda Prempeh, the Deputy Minister of Works and Housing, has re-affirmed government’s commitment to acquire some apartments from Sethi Realty, a Real Estate Company, as part of measures to reduce the country’s housing deficit.

“As part of public private partnership, government is considering looking at how best we can at least off take about 200 units of apartments from Sethi Reality, an indication of providing 200 people with quality accommodation to ease the 1.7 million housing deficit,” She added.

The Deputy Minister said this in Accra in an interview with the Ghana News Agency after she inspected 120 two-bedroom and 120 three-bedroom facility of Sethi Realty site in Kpone Katamanso District in the Greater Accra Region.

Mrs Prempeh commended management of Sethi Realty for such magnificent apartments which comes with the state-of-the art facilities on an eight hectare land.

She observed that there were a number of high rise buildings in the city but due to the expensive nature of those facilities it becomes difficult to get people to rent or buy those facilities, and as a result, the Ministry was looking at engaging with the private sector to get quality and affordable houses for its citizenry.

Mrs Prempeh said government was working assiduously to bridge the gap in the housing deficit through effective stakeholder collaboration, saying the current state of the country’s affordable housing project was not the best.

She noted that the affordable housing project was initiated by Former President Kufuor’s government which started work in Kpone, Koforidua, Wa, Tamale, Kumasi among others but had to be halted due to change of government.

The Deputy Minister posited that a two-bedroom apartment now was not affordable because it was expensive for a middle level person to acquire.

Such buildings, she said, cost as high as 200,000 dollars, saying government would look at the social housing scheme to ensure that people below the ladder can afford to rent or buy a house.

She urged the private sector to incorporate the use of local materials into the building industry to bring down the cost of buildings and as well provide job opportunities for the youth.

Mrs Prempeh said government had over 1,000 properties in Accra but do not have a complete database of occupants, which had created a situation where retired public servants stay in government bungalows for years without paying rent allowance to the Social Security and National Insurance Trust.

She warned unauthorised people leaving in state bungalows to vacate the facility and pave way for others to stay, adding that the Ministry would embark on a comprehensive survey and audit on all government properties to ensure that the right people occupied the facilities.

Mrs Prempeh said the Ministry was able to accrue GHC85,000 when they went after unauthorised occupants of state buildings and would continue to pursue them until they paid what was due to the government.

She urged squatters leaving around the Nkrumah flats and other unauthorised apartment to vacate the place to enable government to build high rise buildings to serve a larger population of the citizenry.

She called for attitudinal behaviour among Ghanaians to address the problem of flooding in the country, saying government would not hesitate to pull down building situated in water ways.

Mr Godwin Adjei-Gyamfi, the Chief Executive Officer of Sethi Realty, said the company’s objective was to develop and construct real estate in the country for commercial and residential purposes.

He said their outfit was prepare to partner government to address the housing problem in the country and indicated that their facility comes along with fitted kitchen, DSTV, 24 hours power back up, water reservoir and granite staircase.

Mr Adjei-Gyamfi said a two-bedroom apartment was sold at GHc 300,000 while a three-bedroom apartment goes for GHc 340,000.

Source: GNA/Newsghana.com.gh