By Kingsley Adegboye
The battle between the Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria, REDAN and Development Control Agency of the Federal Capital Territory Authority, FCTA over the demolition of some estates built by REDAN members, has been resolved with both parties agreeing to stop further demolitions of built-up estates in Abuja.
The agreement was the highpoint of a meeting by top executives of the two organisations at the Development Control Office of the FCTA.
The DCA had in recent times carried out various demolitions in some estates’ sites developed by REDAN members in different parts of Abuja. They hinged such demolitions on lack of proper approvals before the estates were built. The situation affected property investment in the Federal Capital Territory.
Visibly disturbed by the development, the developers sought an end to the demolition by calling for a meeting between its members and the Development Control Agency.
At the end of the meeting, series of resolutions were reached which included the immediate setting-up of a joint task force comprising both parties’ representatives to carryout periodic inspection of on-going estate projects as well as putting in place, measures to ensure that the estates are built according to approved plan.
The President of REDAN, Mr. Olabode Afolayan, who confirmed the development in Lagos at the launch of the Sector Co-operative Housing Loan Scheme by the Federal Mortgage Bank of Nigeria (FMBN) said, “together with Development Control Agency, we have agreed to work together to correct a lot of mistakes. And when we say correction, it might require stopping of building projects or even minimal demolition if buildings obstruct the new design that is being prepared.
“We have agreed to work with the Urban and Regional Planning Department of the FCTA, which is currently redesigning the entire layout to jointly appraise the entire thing and we are doing that with all the urgency it requires.
The problem as identified is a lot on the part of the developers and some on the part of government. For now, we want to keep a lot of things to ourselves because the layout is still being worked on. But we have a good relationship in the interest of everybody and developers and even customers need not entertain any fear.”
Asked whether the developers have approvals, Afolayan said many of them claimed to have approvals and that what the Development Control said was that their approvals came from the Abuja Municipal Area Council AMAC . That was before the development control came into being.
They also claimed that the housing developments were not in line with the land use of what was approved for the area. “‘So, we are now looking at how we can marry the two together and get a better design’’.
‘’On the whole, about 95 per cent of developers along Lugbe on Airport Road, Abuja were affected by the demolition exercise. The value of property lost to the demolition is over N10 billion. In a particular site, 172 housing units were demolished and each of the units cost N25 million’’, he said.