Increasingly, the good sides of the crippling economic recession are unfolding and one of the areas where it is manifested is in land transaction in Lagos State where land commands high value and is equated to oil well by its owners and managers.
Because of recession, the billions of naira revenue which the state had been raking from land transactions has dropped by as high as 30 per cent to between 250 and 300 applicants per month, down from 400 per month before the recession.
It is therefore, a huge opportunity for those that have bought land in the state and are yet to perfect the titles, as this period of recession has compelled the government agency which has that responsibility to consider and do business with prospective applicants.
The state’s Lands Bureau says it is experiencing a slowdown in transactions and according to Bode Agoro, the permanent secretary in charge of the bureau, applications for governor’s consent which is the highest revenue generating arm of the bureau, has dropped significantly.
The bureau is therefore requesting people wishing to obtain their Governor’s Consent to come up with their applications, assuring that they would make the processing faster. “The only thing we can do is to speed up our processing of governor’s consent, make it quicker and more efficient and hopefully people that kept their C of O or their transactions from obtaining governor’s consent, when they hear that things are moving fast, they will come up”, Agoro said.
The processes leading to obtaining Governor’s Consent in Lagos, before now, were not only costly, but also tedious and time wasting, but the need to generate more revenue is compelling the government to ease the process by shortening the time and making it lighter.
To further encourage land buying, the state government has come up with a property protection law, called the Land Grabbers Law which is specifically targeted at land grabbers.
“The law makes it an offense for someone to sell another man’s land and the average penalty is between 2 to 20 years imprisonment. If you see a grabber on your land, under this law, we can arrest the occupier because whoever is sitting on the land is the grabber. We have arrested many people and they have been prosecuted under the land grabber’s law, Agoro said.