…Set for full implementation of URPD law
Disturbed by the frequent collapse of buildings including one of its own last week Thursday at Alausa, the Lagos State government is to embark on full blown demolition of hundreds of identified distressed buildings standing precariously in various parts of Lagos in 2012.
The exercise planned to commence from the first quarter of the New Year, a source in the Ministry of Urban Planning and Physical Development, told CityFile, will see developers and owners of every building brought down by the government forfeiting the Certificate of Occupancy (C of O) and the property to the state.
Majority of the distressed buildings, CityFile gathered, are located on Lagos Island. A good number of them are said to have been constructed over half a century ago, while others not quite old but defective are as a result of substandard materials used in the construction work.
This year alone, 22 of such buildings have been demolished in the state both by their owners and the government.
The state is also to commence full implementation of the Urban Regional Planning and Development (URPD) Law of 2010 aimed at putting paid to incessant building collapse in 2012.
The URPD law was promulgated in July 2010, by the Fashola-led administration as part of measures to achieve zero tolerance in illegal development of property with a view to attaining better physical environment for sustainable development.
Olutoyin Ayinde, commissioner for Urban Planning and Regional Development, said last week at an interactive session with stakeholders and community members in Kosofe area of the state that government is putting its foot down to ensuring full compliance with the URPD law beginning from the New Year.
The purpose of the interactive session with the theme, “The Roles of stakeholders in the Lagos State Urban and Regional Planning and Development Law 2010’ was to sensitise the public on the essence of the law, “It will not be right to administer a law to which people are very ignorant of, it’s one of the interactive sessions that is going to go round, so we are starting off in Kosofe to make them aware of the existing law,” Ayinde said, stressing that having created sufficient awareness about the law, the government is leaving no stone unturned in its implementation and enforcement come 2012.
He called on owners of all the buildings recommended for demolition as published in one of the national dailies few weeks ago to do so or face the wrath of the law. He warned that if such structures collapsed, government would take possession of such land.
He noted however, that the government is giving opportunity for property owners and developers of buildings identified to be defective to request for their buildings to be tested.
He said: “The Building Control Authority which is expected to be charged with the responsibility of regulating erection of structures in the state will take off shortly and the ministry has set up a committee to study the details of the law as well as work out modalities for the implementation of the law in the state.
Corroborating, Bola Adefiha, acting general manager, Lagos State Physical Planning and Development Authority (LASPPDA), said the meeting was in keeping with the norm that “effective implementation of physical planning law requires agreements and coordinated actions by a wide variety of actors from the public, private and community actors.’’