By Yinka Kolawole, with agency report
When acquiring a property, you have to take necessary steps to ensure that what you are buying is genuine. Then you have to obtain the proper title if none existed before or perfect the title as the case may be. Obtaining the Governor’s consent to all land transactions is a means of perfecting land titles.
The Land Use Act of 1978 puts all land in a State; town and rural area under the control of the Governor and Local Government Chairman, respectively, in trust for the people of the state.
Consequent upon this, section 22 of the Act then states that, “it shall not be lawful for the holder of a statutory Right of Occupancy granted by the Governor to alienate his Right of Occupancy or any part thereof by assignment, sublease etc without the prior consent of the Governor”.
Simply put, even though a property has Certificate of Occupancy which makes the beneficiary the legal interest holder on the land for 99 years or the residue, if he decides to resell, mortgage or do anything with the property, since the land is held in trust by the state government, the Governor needs to approve the transaction.
In other words, the first person on a land is the only person or group of persons entitled to obtain a Certificate of Occupancy. Every subsequent buyer of that land must get a Governor’s consent. There can only be one Owner of the Certificate of Occupancy on that land and it will not be replicated for another person once the land has been sold or transferred to another person.
The process that accompanies the issuance of Governor’s consent in Lagos State is usually carried out in the Ministry of Lands. The following documents are required for the purpose of obtaining Governor’s consent: Dated letter of application with addresses and phone numbers; Duly completed form 1c.
The form must be dated and signed by the parties to the transaction and sworn to before a Magistrate or Notary Public; Certified true copy of grantors title document; Grantors’ tax clearance certificate /developmental levy receipt and; Grantees’ tax clearance certificate/developmental levy receipt.
Others are: Four copies of duly executed sublease, deed of assignment (with survey plans attached in each copy), mortgages or power of attorney; Chartable survey plans; Evidence of payment of charting, endorsement, and form 1c; Evidence of payment of ground rent/land use charge; Letter of confirmation of payment of capital contribution from NTDA in respect of Lekki peninsula schemes 1 and 2, Abijo GRA, Isheri North and other affected government schemes and; Building plan or photograph of the property.
After submitting the first set of deed of assignment and survey plan, internal scrutiny of the documents submitted is carried out. Thereafter, the documents are sent to the Surveyor General’s office for charting. If there are no defects in the survey plan, a clean report is sent to the Lands Bureau and a demand notice is issued to the applicant for the following fees: Consent fee – 8 percent of assessed value of the property;
Capital gains tax – 2 percent of assessed value of the property; Stamp Duty fee – 2 percent of assessed value of the property; Registration fee – 3 percent of assessed value of the property and; Current tax clearance certificates of the parties to the property transaction. If you have none, an assessment is raised immediately for you.
Finally, your application (document) is sent to any of the commissioners that are specifically designated for that purpose to append their signature. When this has been done, it is sent back to the applicant to do stamp duty and final registration. Your deed of assignment then becomes Governor’s Consent; it is now a registered title. It’s the registered title that is called deed.