By Olasunkanmi Akoni & Gbenga Akanmu
Lagos State House Assembly, yesterday, passed the Tenancy Bill into law, after the third reading and sent it to the Governor Babatunde Fashola for assent.
The bill is tagged: A bill for a law to regulate rights and obligations under tenancy agreement and the relationship between landlord and the tenant including the procedure for the recovery of premises and for other connected purposes in Lagos State.
According to the bill, it shall be unlawful for a sitting tenant to offer or pay rent in excess of one year for a yearly tenant in respect of any premises and any person who receives or pays rent in excess of what is prescribed by the law shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable to a fine of N100,000.
The bill further spelt out the rights of parties, which states that the tenant’s entitlement to quiet and peaceable enjoyment of the premises which includes privacy, freedom from unreasonable disturbance, noise, pollution and nuisance as well as exclusive possession of the premises, subject to the landlord’s restricted right of inspection.
The bill consists of 47 sections, including jurisdiction of the courts, obligations of the tenant, obligations of the landlord, length of notice, services of notice, among others.
Also, the bill will allow a tenant to enjoy privacy as the landlord must give a written notice in a case where he/she needs to inspect the house being occupied by the tenant.
This law shall be applicable to premises let before and after the commencement of the law.