Where is home for the Abuja, Nigeria urban poor?
Although Abuja officially became the capital of Nigeria in December 1992, the plan to relocate the capital of Nigeria from Lagos to Abuja was conceived in 1975. A Master Plan of the Abuja Federal Capital Territory was designed but successive governments in Abuja neglected these principles leading to inadequate housing and perverted urbanization. The current Abuja settlement patterns (formal and informal) are not concerned with integration and sustainability. The most vulnerable, the urban poor, had to arrange, on their own, where to live and that resulted in shanty settlements. The study areas are characterized by Quick-Fix homes, made with abandoned and used building materials from construction sites. This paper argues that successive Abuja governments have not considered all the housing options in housing the urban poor and in other to stay close to work, the urban poor infiltrate the formal settlement areas of the city and that resulted in dualistic and pluralistic settlements in Abuja.
Keywords: dichotomy; environment; development; housing; architecture; commerce