Uganda’s National Social Security Fund (NSSF) has officially commissioned the construction of a US$400 million Lubowa housing project which it says is aimed at expanding its investment portfolio allowing it to give its members more competitive returns on their savings.
The 2,740 unit, housing project in Lubowa, Wakiso district in Uganda will be constructed on NSSF’s 565 acres of land along Entebbe Road. It is expected to be one of the most upmarket housing projects in Uganda.
The Lubowa housing development will have retail and offices space, school, hospital, leisure and commercial areas, police post, fire stations and places of worship, a central Park and a plantation Garden Park, creating a desirable environment for the residents.
Speaking during the ground breaking ceremony NSSF managing director Richard Byarugaba said the decision to come up with the housing project in the area was also informed by rising demand for housing in the area especially to cater for the expanding middle class.
“We also aim at delivering competitive returns on our members’ savings,” he said.
NSSF gave a 12.3% return on members’ savings last year and is set to announce a new interest rate at the 5th Annual Members Meeting this Thursday.
To be sold at prevailing market rates at the time of completion of the project, the houses will be sold on the open market to both the Fund members and the general public. But priority will be given to the members.
NSSF has indicated that its real estate strategy going forward will be to build low cost houses in and around Kampala. However as board chairman Patrick Byabakama Kaberenge said that the Fund will continue to diversify to cushion itself from risks.
Housing deficit in Uganda continues to grow by an estimated 300,000 units per annum. Currently, 2 million units are needed to deal with the problem according to the National Planning Authority plan of 2015-2020.
NSSF says that the Lubowa Housing project is part of the wider plan by the government to tackle housing shortage in Uganda.