… Engages Stakeholders on Ease of Doing Business

… Pleads for Voluntary Compliance Among Built Professionals

Lagos State Physical Planning Permit Authority (LASPPPA), has said that its policies in the physical planning environment are aimed at encouraging investment in the built sector and also entrenching the culture of wilful compliance to physical planning laws among relevant stakeholders and the citizens.

The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development, Engr. Oluwole Sotire stated this on Thursday at a one-day Seminar organized by LASPPPA and Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria (REDAN) on “Improving the Planning Permit Process for Ease of Doing Business in Lagos State”, held at Oriental Hotel, Lekki, Lagos.

Engr. Sotire, in his presentation at the stakeholders’ engagement, enumerated measures already put in place by the State Government to improve Planning Permit processes in the State.

He added that stakeholders and the general public can also contribute to the ease of doing business in the built sector by ensuring that all documents needed for processing the Planning Permit are complete at the point of application.

The Permanent Secretary revealed that by the time the State Government completes its ongoing digitization of physical planning processes and issuance of Electronic Permit, the populace will better appreciate the ease of doing business procedures of the government.

Sotire noted that the process of introducing a certified accreditors programme from the Private sector to certify drawings and monitor buildings under construction is also ongoing and will further enhance the ease of doing business policy of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu’s administration.

He encouraged participants at the stakeholders’ engagement to download the Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development Application (MPP&UD App) for ease of interacting with the Ministry on issues relating to the Planning Permit.

Engr. Sotire assured the stakeholders that discussion on the ease of doing business will be a continuous one and will be sustained until the plans of the state government are brought to fruition in the built sector.

On his part, the General Manager of LASPPPA, Tpl. Kehinde Osinaike said that the need to foster an enabling environment that supports the goal of carrying out business activities in Lagos State seamlessly, easier and efficiently for everyone necessitates discussions around collaboration with built professionals, and engagement on government policies and programmes as it relates to Planning Permit processes and Ease of Doing Business (EoDB) in the State.

Osinaike stated that although stakeholders’ meeting initiatives have always been part of LASPPPA’s mandate over the years his tenure re-invigorated the stakeholders’ engagement to the level of attracting a huge success given the high level of voluntary compliance to the Planning Permit that followed.

The General Manager further explained that the concept of stakeholders’ meeting was premised on the need to bring residents and practitioners in the built environment closer to the Authority by enlightening everyone on roles expected of them to ensure a more secure, livable, functional and sustainable environment.

Osinaike informed that a well-articulated plan alone will not bring about the expected changes in the built sector if its intent and purposes are not fully adhered to, hence the use of legislation (Laws and Regulations) to enforce compliance, saying that this reinforces the importance of the various laws and legal documents by the Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development and the agencies under the Ministry.

Highlighting some of the provisions of the law, Tpl. Osinaike informed that the Development on a land area of 10,000 sqm must first obtain layout approval from the Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development before proceeding to Lagos State Physical Planning Permit Authority (LASPPPA) for grant of Planning Permit;

 “It is mandatory for ALL physical development proposals (be it government or private project) to first obtain Planning Permit from LASPPPA before embarking on project construction; it is also compulsory to approach LASBCA with approval granted to obtain Authorization to commence construction. All stages of construction must obtain the sign-off of LASBCA”, he noted.

He explained that the administration of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu believes strongly in a voluntary compliance approach to Planning permits and that is why the Authority is playing down the use of force during enforcement in the implementation of physical planning policies and programmes.

While saying that Lagos State is on the path of achieving its goal as a first-choice destination of the 21st-century economy, the General Manager averred that this can only be achieved through the collective efforts of all stakeholders who are expected to key into the seamless process of obtaining Planning Permit before embarking on construction works.

The Chairman of the Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria (REDAN), Dr. Bamidele Onolaja remarked that the event which is a collaboration of the State government and the Association is a testament to a synergistic partnership that can drive positive change in the built sector.

According to him, the theme of the stakeholders’ engagement: “Improving the Planning Permit Process for Ease of Doing Business in Lagos State”, implies that real estate professionals and other stakeholders in the built sector should not only see themselves as builders, but instead, see their roles as that of creators of communities, shapers of skylines, and contributors to economic growth.

He maintained that the process of obtaining planning permits had often been a bottleneck that hindered the collective ability of relevant built professionals to deliver efficient, safe, and sustainable structures.

The REDAN Chairman expressed the hope that the various insights shared at the stakeholders’ engagement will empower the participants to navigate complexities, seize opportunities, and shape policies that will further promote sustainable growth.

He urged built professionals, especially real estate developers, to see themselves as partners united in a shared vision for a thriving real estate sector in Lagos State, stressing that collective effort among stakeholders will reverberate into a more prosperous tomorrow.

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