By Monsuru Olowoopejo
Worried by property owners’ circumvention of approvals while erecting structures in Lagos State, the state government has approved a six-month relaxation of its property regularisation policy.
The six months window is to help those that had erected structures without building permits to approach its offices with duly stamped receipts obtained from the families they had purchased lands for approval without any penalty, according to government.
Speaking with journalists at the stakeholders’ meeting organised by the Lagos State Physical Planning Permit Authority, LASPPPA, at Amuwo-Odofin, Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Mr. Rotimi Ogunleye, stressed that the action was to assist property owners to have legal backing on their structures.
While urging prospective landlords to also use the six months window which commenced March 2018 to 31st August, 2018, Ogunleye noted that the window was an act by the government to encourage property owners to obey the law.
He said: “We are out to inform the people of Amuwo-Odofin on the activities of the Lagos State Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development in particular about the window we have opened from March 2018 to 31st August,2018. Those who have contravened by building their structures without building permit, are to take advantage of this opportunity.
“Within the period, you are not going to face the hurdle of registering document of title and planning permit because the administration of Governor Akinwunmi Ambode, has made things easy for the landlords of the existing buildings and the yet- to- be-built structures.
“Currently, you will get provisional approval which will enable you to start building, then you can now go on to the Lands Bureau to finally get the registered title. Before if you built without getting approval, which means you would be penalized. But if you also build after August 31st, you will also face the penalty as prescribed by the law”, Ogunleye noted.
He, however, warned residents against abusing the privilege to erect structures on government’s land or illegally acquired land, urging people to seek land information about their purchased land at the Surveyor-General’s office , if in doubt about the status of the purchased land before embarking on the building.
He said that the planning information at the ministry would also reveal the master plan of the area and show if the land is free from government’s acquisition or not as well as what can be built in the area.
Earlier, General Manager of Lagos State Physical Planning Permit Authority, LASPPA, Mr. Funmi Osifuye, while explaining reasons for the six months window approved for property owners seeking government permits, noted that the opportunity was to assist property owners protect them. According to him, within this window, property owners could approach the government with land receipt and obtain the required government permit.