Odum, Chinwuba O. and Ibem, Eziyi O.
Securing urban land for housing among low‐income earners in Sub‐Saharan Africa: Case study of workers’ co‐operative society, Enugu, Nigeria.
HUMAN GEOGRAPHIES – Journal of Studies and Research in Human Geography, 5 (1).
Co‐operative societies across the world have age‐old tradition of assisting members gain
easy access to vital resources and services through collective efforts. This paper explores the strategies
adopted by public sector workers’ co‐operative society in securing urban land for housing
development. This study is motivated by dearth of empirical studies on strategies used by low‐ and
middle –income earners in overcoming myriad challenges militating against access to urban land and
housing in Nigerian cities. We used a qualitative research method to carry out an empirical
investigation through one‐on‐one interviews with purposively selected members of Land Acquisition
Committee (LAC) of the NEPA District Co‐operative Thrift and Saving Loan Association Enugu,
Nigeria. Findings show that a mixture of customary,informal and formal practices involved in securing land from indigenous landowners was principally aimed at ensuring customary and statutory
legitimacy as well as secured tenure. The paper concludes that co‐operative approach has great
potentials in addressing problems of multiple payments for land, “indigenous land owners’ factor” and
high cost of urban land in Nigeria, and therefore, should be encouraged and promoted among
disadvantaged urban residents in developing countries.
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