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Lagos Tenants To Start Paying Monthly Rent In 2022 —– Sanwo-Olu

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The incessant issue of land grabbing may become a thing of the past anytime soon in Lagos State, as Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu orders complete excision on untitled land across the State.

The Governor’s directive represents a major turning point in land administration in Lagos, as the exercise would enable the State Government to carry out documented delineation on communal land and land owned by the families. At the end of the exercise, the issues of land grabbing by thugs working for landowners are expected to be curbed.

Sanwo-Olu gave the order at the Lagos Real Estate Market Place Conference and Exhibitions organized by the Lagos State Real Estate Regulatory Authority (LASRERA) at the Eko Hotel and Suites, Victoria Island. The two-day event with the theme: “Lagos: 21st Century Real Estate Investment Hub”, is the second edition to be held by the agency.

Land is a limited asset in Lagos, which is a coastal State. Activities of land-grabbers have created an unpredictable climate in land acquisition in Lagos, robbing private real estate investors and individuals of fortunes.

Sanwo-Olu said a technical committee will be set up to fine-tune the framework for the excision process on untitled land, with the objective to granting Certificate of Occupancy (C-of-O) to landowners for transparent sales of the asset.

The Governor condemned an effort by State officials to frustrate and sabotage the full take-off of the State’s Enterprise Geographic Information System (e-GIS) project initiated to automate approval of land surveys and allocation titles in one talk shop. Sanwo-Olu issued a stern warning, saying he would be ruthless in purging out saboteurs in the ranks of Government.

He said: “One of the issues we are working on is the ownership of land. There is a large parcel of land across Lagos that doesn’t have the Government title.

“It is to announce to this gathering that I’ve made up my mind that we are going to do excision for untitled land. This process will kick off next year and we will set up a committee whose composition will represent all traditional divisions in Lagos. With equity and fairness, we will yield proper titles on all the land, so that the issue of land grabbing can be reduced to the minimum.

“We will also be carrying out genuine reform in our Survey Department. We need to have our e-GIS platform up and running after 10 years that it was initiated. I’m expressing my disappointment in some Government officials sabotaging these efforts. I will look for the culprits and I will be ruthless in meting out punishment. I will ensure these saboteurs have no place in my Government.”

By next year, Sanwo-Olu said a new policy of monthly tenancy on property occupancy would kick off in Lagos. The concept, he said, is not to punish the landlord or reduce the expected revenue of the property owner.

He said monthly tenancy would ease off the pressure of yearly rent on tenants, as the new policy is designed to make people pay their rents according to their monthly earnings. The policy, Sanwo-Olu said, emanated from an agreement reached by the association of tenants, consortium of financiers, and the Government.

Addressing the cause of the high affordability of property in Lagos, the Governor said the State’s partnership with the private sector had raised the housing stock but added that the non-availability of long-tenure mortgage bonds made it impossible for low-income earners to benefit.

The Government, he said, is thinking out of the box to design a financing model that would reduce the burden on mortgage applicants, while also charging real estate developers to reduce the cost of developing property by engaging local competence for skills outsourced to foreigners.

He said: “We should not just build property only for consumers, we must also build skills and integrate them in our built environment to showcase great output. Technical and vocational skills are things we must deliberately harness and reflect in our work. At the end of the day, we must be able to design a housing development and ownership model that is fit for our purpose and peculiar to our local needs.”

Special Adviser to the Governor on Housing, Mrs. Toke Benson-Awoyinka, said real estate remained the most sought-after investment, noting that the market, apart from creating sustainable jobs, also has the highest potential of growing the economy of any nation.

She said the State Government realized the need for investors and consumers to know policies put in place and how the knowledge of all the policies could assist stakeholders in making informed decisions in investing in the real estate market.

Benson-Awoyinka said: “As a Government, we have realized this fact and as such, have been making business-friendly policies that can assist would-be investors and consumers to operate in a conducive business environment. LASRERA has strengthened its efforts to make this sector more vibrant by ensuring that practitioners operate within the ambit of the law.

“The agency has registered over 100 individuals and organizations that approached the Government to regularise their operations with us. We have seen positive results from this undertaking, as the State, through the LASRERA, has resolved several reported cases of fraudulent practices brought to the attention of the agency in a very professional manner.”

As a regulator, the Special Adviser urged investors and consumers to make LASRERA their first point of contact before investing in real estate in any part of Lagos.

There was a panel discussion with the theme: “How the real estate sector can drive social implications and opportunities in Lagos”, moderated by the Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget, Mr. Sam Egube.

The audience at the conference comprised stakeholders in the built industry, including property developers, landlords, market facilitators and potential property buyers.

The stakeholders agreed that the Government’s primary business in the real estate sector must be the maintenance of rule of law and effective regulations to protect investors and consumers.

Stakeholders also called for improvement in housing finance and the introduction of affordable insurance policies in the sector.

They said LASRERA, as the regulator, should be an enabler that must make the market happen and not be a police in the sector. They urged the Government to resolve issues around the titling of property to bring back confidence in the real estate market.

BIG STORY

JUST IN: Amaechi Resigns As Minister Of Transportation

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Chibuike Rotimi Amaechi, a presidential aspirant on the platform of the All Progressives Congress, on Monday, officially resigned his position in the cabinet of President Muhammadu Buhari as the Minister of Transportation.

In a press statement issued by the Amaechi Presidential Media Committee (APMC) signed by Kingsley Wali, in Abuja, Amaechi in his resignation letter expressed profound gratitude to the President for considering him fit to serve in his administration.

He equally thanked Buhari for the enormous support given him, which he said, was responsible for the tremendous record of achievements he made in the Ministry of Transportation over the last seven years.

The statement quoted Amaechi as saying in his resignation letter: “It is with mixed feelings that I tender my resignation as the Minister of Transportation of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to contest for the Presidential ticket of our great party, the All Progressives Congress.

“Your Excellency, it has been a great honor and privilege serving as a member of your cabinet following your historic victory at the polls in 2015. Under your administration, the Ministry of Transportation has recorded significant achievements, made possible by your visionary support and commitment to ensuring that we deliver on our mandate.

“As I embark on the next phase of our mission to work towards a better Nigeria for ALL NIGERIANS, I humbly seek Your Excellency’s prayers, and blessings, and look towards your continuous support and guidance.

“Your Excellency, whilst humbly seeking your kind consideration of my request please accept the assurances of my highest esteem.”

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BREAKING: EFCC Arrests Accountant-General Of The Federation, Ahmed Idris, Over Diversion Of N80bn

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Nigeria’s Accountant-General, Ahmed Idris, has been arrested over alleged money laundering and diversion of public funds.

Those familiar with the development said Mr. Idris was intercepted in Kano by operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) on Monday evening and is being flown to Abuja, the nation’s capital, for interrogation.

Report has it that the EFCC has for some time been investigating a case of diversion of at least N80 billion in public funds which were allegedly laundered through some bogus contracts.

The companies used in laundering the funds have allegedly been linked to family members and associates of the accountant-general, investigators said.

Our sources further said after progress was made in the investigation, Mr. Idris was summoned repeatedly for interrogation but he failed to honor the invitations.

“We kept inviting him but he kept dodging us,” one of our sources said. “We were left with no choice but to keep him under watch and arrest him.”

The spokesperson for the EFCC could not be reached to comment on his story. One of his subordinates said he is traveling in the United Kingdom at this time.

However, a top EFCC official confirmed the development but asked not to be named because he had no permission to discuss the matter with the media.

President Muhammed Buhari appointed Mr. Idris’s accountant-general on June 25, 2015.

The position became vacant at the time after the former Accountant General, Jonah Otunla, left office on June 12, 2015.

President Buhari reappointed Mr. Idris for a second four-year term in June 2019, amid criticisms from labor groups who said the accountant-general should retire after turning 60.

Mr. Idris, a native of Kano State, North-west Nigeria, was born on November 25, 1960, and was until his appointment in 2015 the Director of Finance and Accounts, Federal Ministry of Mines and Steel Development.

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BREAKING: Embattled Ex-EFCC Chair, Ibrahim Magu, Promoted To AIG

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The Police Service Commission has promoted Ibrahim Magu, suspended acting chairman of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to the rank of an Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIG), along with five others.

AIG Magu Ibrahim who is proceeding on retirement is the most senior in the CP cadre and missed the last two promotions after returning to the Police from the EFCC.

It was gathered that the decision to promote Magu follows the recommendation of the Inspector-General of Police, Usman Baba. The PSC had last July declined to promote Magu during the promotion of 24 CPs and other officers.

This is just as the PSC confirmed the promotion of Mr. John Ogbonnaya Amadi as a Deputy Inspector General of Police, to take over from late DIG Joseph Egbunike who represented South East in the Police Management team. Also promoted DIG is Zana Bala Senchi.

The other Commissioners of Police promoted to AIG are CP Abraham Egong Ayim; Okunlola Kola Kamaldeen; Andrew Amieengheme; Akeera Mohammed Younous; Celestine Amechi Elumelu; Ngozi Vivian Onadeko and Danladi Bitrus Lalas (Airwing).

A statement by Ikechukwu Ani, Head of Press and Public Relations said 23 Deputy Commissioners of Police were promoted to Commissioners of Police

The new 23 Commissioners of Police are; Taiwo Olusola Jesubiyi, former DC, Admin and Finance, Akwa Ibom State Command; Kolawole Olajide former DC, Force CID Annex, Alagbon, Lagos; Julius Alawari Okoro, former DC, Maritime, Lagos; Adelesi Ebunoluwa Oluwarotimi, former DC DFA, Kwara State Command; George Chijioke Chuku, former DC Ops Ebonyi State Command; Paul Alifa Omata, former DC Ops, Kwara State Command; and Effiong Dominic Edem, former DC Ops, Zone 2 Lagos. Others are Yusuf Adesina Akeem, presently at the National Defence College; Mary Gbemudu George, former DC, Anti Human Trafficking Abuja; Etim Aqua Efiom, former DC Ops FHQ, Abuja; Mohammed Yakubu, former DC SCID Anambra Command; Ganiyu Alhaji Salami, former DC ZCID Zone11 Osogbo; Magaji Kontagora Ahmed, former, DC Ops, Lagos State Command; and Kolo Yusufu, presently O/c IGP Special Tactical Squad & TIU.

Also promoted CPs are Bzigu Yakaba Kwazhi Dali, presently on secondment to ECOWAS Commission, Guinea, Bissau; Ahmed Ammani, presently at the National Defence College; Afolabi Babatola Adeniyi, former DC, Ops Yobe State Command; Njoku Henry Eronini, former DC, JTF, Yenagoa, Bayelsa State; Abiodun Oladimeji Asabi; Dankwara Adamu Mohammed, former DC, SPU FHQ, Abuja; Mohammed Usaini Gumel, former DC TIU FHQ, Abuja; Ogundele Ayodeji, former DC Central Intelligence, Force CID Annex, Lagos and Idris Nagoya, former 2i/c Force Animal branch.

The Commission also approved the promotion of 23 Deputy Commissioners to the next rank of Commissioners of Police; 31 Assistant Commissioners to Deputy Commissioners of Police.

Magu’s ordeal began in July 2020 when he was suspended from office as acting EFCC chairman by President Muhammadu Buhari, over Malami’s allegations against him and he consequently appeared before a presidential panel headed by retired Justice Ayo Salami set up to probe him for alleged graft and insubordination.

More to come…

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