Sunday, 25 February

Rent assistance: Publish names of beneficiaries – Tenants Union to Minister

General News
An estate housing in Accra

The National Tenants Union of Ghana has called on the Minister of Works and Housing, Mr Francis Asenso-Boakye, to publicly disclose the list of beneficiaries who received disbursements from the National Rental Assistance Scheme (NRAS). 

The Union contends that transparency in publishing the names of beneficiaries, along with their respective regions, will alleviate doubts among its members.

Mr Frederick Opoku, President of the National Tenants Union of Ghana, emphasised the importance of the Minister releasing the names to clarify whether any union members had received assistance from the Ministry.

Mr Opoku raised questions about the disbursement when he spoke on Accra100.5FM's morning show, Ghana Yensom, hosted by Odehyeeba Kofi Essuman on Wednesday, February 7, 2024.

He revealed that, as of now, there is no record within the union indicating its members had benefited from the NRAS.

He hoped this may not turn out to be one of the government's public relations gimmicks.

Approximately GH¢19 million has been disbursed to 1,492 beneficiaries since the inception of the NRAS a year ago. 

The disbursements, which averaged GH¢500.00 per month, were allocated for two years' rent and distributed across six operational regions, with Accra having the highest number of beneficiaries.

The Minister of Works and Housing, Mr Asenso-Boakye, provided an update on the scheme's implementation, noting that beneficiaries have consistently met their monthly repayment obligations, achieving a 100% repayment rate.

Launched on January 31, 2023, the NRAS seeks to address market failures in the rental segment by providing low-interest loans of 12% per annum to eligible Ghanaians. 

The scheme aims to assist individuals with reliable income sources, including public and private sector employees, and self-employed individuals. 

The eligibility criteria include Ghanaian citizenship, possession of a valid Ghanacard, adulthood (18 years and above), verifiable employment and income, and a rent payable not exceeding 30% of the household income.

The Minister assured that the government is committed to expanding the NRAS programme to cover all 16 regions of the country, aligning with broader objectives of ensuring access to adequate, safe, and affordable housing and basic services, in line with Sustainable Development Goal 11.

Source: Mensah