… Calls For Collective Adherence by Residents
Lagos State Government has begun its sensitization and awareness campaign on Land Use Charge Matters for Property Owners in Lagos Island, Lagos Island East, Eti-Osa, Ikoyi Obalende, Iru Victoria Island and Eti-Osa East Local Government/Local Council Development Areas in the State as part of efforts to inform and educate key stakeholders on the importance of the payment of Land Use Charge as well as to seek valuable feedback from residents.
Speaking on Monday at the event held at the Adeyemi-Bero Auditorium, Alausa-Ikeja, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Finance, Mr. Hundogan Sewanu Temitope said that the objective of the programme is to encourage property owners to pay their land use charge bill for the development of the State. He averred that there is an urgent need to improve the internally generated revenue of the government to meet the huge infrastructural projects across the State.
In his words, “The Land Use Charge taxes is an integral source of internally generated revenue for the State Government which is used for the provision of socio-economic infrastructure and amenities”. Citing the recent Blue Rail-Line Transport System which has now been launched for public Transportation, the Permanent Secretary emphasised that the development of any society is anchored on the adherence of its residents to the payment of their taxes.
Hundogan, however, frowned at the untoward behaviour of some property owners who deny officials access to their properties and appealed to them to kindly cooperate with the State Government by allowing officials designated to distribute bills to do their jobs without any attack.
In her remarks, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Local Government, Chieftaincy Affairs and Rural Development, Mrs. Kikelomo Bolarinwa emphasised that the sensitization is to enable the government to ensure compliance on the payment of Land Use Charge bills, adding that the payment is for the infrastructural development of the State.
In his overview of the Land Use Charge Law of the year 2020, the Director of Legal, Ministry of Finance, Mrs. Veronica Emily Oni stated that the Law was signed by the Governor of Lagos State Mr. Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu on the 25th of May, 2020 which gives the Government the authority/right to collect Land Use Charge from residents.
According to her, “The persons liable to pay land use charge includes land/property owners, an occupier with a lease of at least 10 years or any person for the time being receiving proceeds on the property on own account or as agent or trustee for any other person”.
The Registrar of Land Use Charge Assessment Tribunal, Mrs. Oyegunle Olayinka stated that the Tribunal was set up by the Lagos State Government as an avenue for aggrieved persons to ventilate their grievances, in respect of Land Use Charge assessments and other related matters, to resolve the disputes and encourage compliance with the law on the payment of Land Use Charge.
She encouraged Property Owners to take advantage of the various platforms available for Land Use Charge Dispute Resolution and enjoy all the benefits attached, to avert all the attendant consequences of non-compliance.
The event was well attended by stakeholders including the Consul General, Benin Republic, Pierre-Plaisir Akowanou; Ambassador to Saudi Arabia, Dr. Ishaq Yusuf Adebayo; Chairmen of Local Government and Local Council Development Areas, Representatives of Lagos State Obas, Community Development Associations, Real Estate Licensed Practitioners of Nigeria, Estate Rent Commission Agent Association of Nigeria and Association of Real Estate Developers of Lagos State, among others.