28th March, 2012
The Committee on Physical Planning and Urban Development of the Lagos State House of Assembly has decried what it described as poor record keeping of government property and infrastructure within the powers of the Lagos State Urban Renewal Authority (LASURA).
Chairman of the Committee, Mufutau Egberongbe, who made the complaint recently at a meeting with the senior management of the agency, which is an arm of Physical Planning and Urban Development, said the agency was supposed to be in charge of government property.
“We have come to discover that there is no adequate database as to the number of these properties and the tenancy of these properties, such that some of these properties are now being converted to use by private and individual families,” Egberongbe said at the meeting.
The lawmaker, who represents Apapa Constituency 1 at the Assembly, explained that his committee had also discovered that there are so many occupants of government properties in some places on the Island, who are not paying the proper amount as rent.
According to him, “the committee is set to coordinate and correct these anomalies because we have also discovered that some people that have shops on Nnamdi Azikiwe, Seriki on Lagos Island, owe rents as far back as 2006. This is unacceptable. “We also have in our records, people paying as low as N80,000 per annum for shops on these streets, these are the areas we need to strengthen.
“Landed property in Lagos is worth what oil is to the Niger Delta. The state has enormous responsibilities and all these challenges can only be met with funds.
“This committee is aiming to correct these anomalies and we have equally invited an estate consultant in the circumstance to help us get to the root of this issue.
“Some people are owing the government rent and what LASURA is claiming is that some of these people are untouchables, but we in this committee don’t agree to that, because there is no untouchable name as far as government activities are concerned.”