Lagos Residents Urged To Accept Tenancy Law


Honourable Odueyingbo Moses Olusesan has urged Lagosians to adopt and adapt to the new tenancy bill that was recently passed into law by the state House of Assembly, saying that the law could benefit both landlords and tenants.

Odueyingbo told P.M.NEWS that he intends to organise training clinics to educate the public on government policies. He said the bill has not restrained landlords from making profit from their properties but rather, it provides a soft landing for tenants who have found it difficult to meet their needs as a result of the prevailing global recession.

Odueyingbo who is presently eyeing the chairmanship seat of Ikorodu North Local Council Development Area, (LCDA), concedes that paying a year rent for a start is not easy. “I think we can sit and talk this issue over. Many landlords do not understand that they are still going to get their money in full but only that it will be on yearly basis,” he said.

A member of the Action Congress of Nigeria in Diaspora, United Kingdom, he believes that the practice abroad can be replicated in Nigeria, although our tradition and regard for landed property differ.

Odueyingbo promised to build low-cost houses through the funds that will accrue to his council and via internally generated revenue. “My administration will look at the possibility of building low-cost houses for our people. Shelter is a basic need and we have put it on top of our list along with medical care, education and infrastructure,” he stated.

The new bill stipulates that it is unlawful and criminal for a landlord or his agent to demand or receive from a sitting tenant, rent in excess of six months in respect of any premises without prejudice to the nature of tenancy. It also implies that those who are already tenants are not expected to pay more than six months in advance to their landlord. Before the bill was passed, tenants were compelled to pay for even more than two years in some cases.

The bill places a fine of N100,000 or three years imprisonment on any landlord or new tenant who pays in excess of one year and N100,000 or three months imprisonment for any landlord who fails to issue a receipt to a tenant for payment of rent.

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Some of the lawmakers who commented on the law this morning explained that the receipt would enable the authorities to monitor compliance with the law by the landlords.

They said they were aware of the dubious activities of some landlords, adding that the new law was amended to take care of those areas.

The bill titled: “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,” states that “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.”

Odueyingbo, a graduate of Banking & Finance and a Masters holder in Business Administration, said that having worked with the Action Congress of Nigeria from its inception and his passion and zeal to serve his people and better their lives have spurred him to contest.

“I know that I can positively change my community and looking at where we are now, I know that there’s still a lot more that can be achieved in the area of empowerment, welfare and education.

By the grace of God, I’ll continue the good work Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, Governor Fashola and others have begun in Lagos state,” he submitted.

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