The Ghana Real Estates Developers Association (GREDA) is warning of a complete takeover of Accra by foreigners who are acquiring houses from Ghanaians at an alarming rate.
According to GREDA “Accra is becoming like Johannesburg; every property which is good is now owned by foreigners and we are moving to the outskirts”. Speaking at the Housing festival organised by Citi Fm on the topic ‘Fixing Ghana’s housing problem’, Executive Director for the Association, Samuel Amegayibor, attributed the development to the lack of regulation of the real estate industry. “There is no regulation. Everybody is doing anything. For those of us who are selling properties, if you look at the statistics all the fine areas in Accra are being owned by foreigners now.
“Today, we are selling all our properties to foreigners and we are becoming watchmen and house boys servicing those properties. We have to do something about this alarming situation,” he lamented. GREDA recommended the acquisition of large tracts of land and the creation of land banks as one of the solutions to the problems that have bedeviled land acquisition in the country.
On management of lands, GREDA recommended the establishment of an Authority that would be solely responsible for sale of lands, “so that if you are a chief or a family head and you have land, you register the land with that Authority so that its disposal would also go to through the same process so that we are certain that one body is dealing with the issue”. Touching on some earlier suggestions from speakers at the same event, Mr Amegayibor pointed out that government providing infrastructure to ostensibly reduce the cost of lands was unlikely to be achieved.
“Go to where the infrastructure exists now and find out the cost of an acre of land. When you go to places like Labone, and Airport you are buying an acre for $2.5 milion so then what kind of property will a developer put on to even just defray the cost of land?” The GREDA boss called on government to restore macro-economic stability to provide relief to estate developers through reduced cost of production. Chief Executive Officer of Appolonia Real Estate Developers, Mr Bright Amofa, also called for careful definition and articulation of Accra’s development plan to ease the congestion in the city.
“At Appolonia, we believe that the best model is to focus on development of major satellite towns and cities around Accra linked to the main city of Accra via major highways and rail links if possible,” Mr Amofa recommended.