FCT Minister to take over uncompleted buildings

By Hudu Yakubu, Abuja

The FCT Minister, Muhammad Musa Bello (right) in handshake with some of the members of Nigeria Institute of Estate Surveyors and Valuers, (NIESV) in Abuja.

The Federal Capital Territory Administration, FCTA, in Nigeria has said it will take over undeveloped lands and uncompleted buildings in areas where infrastructures have already been provided in the city.

The Minister of FCT, Muhammad Bello stated this when a delegation of the Abuja branch of the Nigeria Institute of Estate Surveyors and Valuers, (NIESV) visited him in Abuja.

 “If you have been following my press statements, we stated that all areas where infrastructure is already on ground and lands are not developed, we are going to apply the law written on everybody’s certificate of occupancy.
So within a certain period of time, all undeveloped land would obviously be reverted to government for re-allocation to others for development. The same thing would apply to buildings under construction but left uncompleted for a very long time,”
he said.

High cost of rent
He said the takeover was necessary because anywhere there was completed infrastructure, it does not help the economy of the city, as well as the people, to leave it empty, stressing that the “uncompleted  buildings obviously block space, deface the town while hoodlums may use the property as a hideout.”

While lamenting a situation where tenants were made to pay either one or two years’ rent advance in Abuja, whereas they got their rents on monthly basis from their employers, he called on the NIESV to help bring down the high cost of rent.

“Tenants are supposed to pay monthly rent as it is done in western countries. I think, if the high rent continues, it may get to a point where legislation would be enacted to bring it down because the rate of unoccupied buildings is alarming in the city,” he said.

The Minister assured the institute that all the issues raised would be addressed and that the ministry would partner with it for the development of the city.

The chairman of the NIESV Abuja chapter, Emmanuel Alao said the visit was to seek partnership with the ministry, especially in the enhancement of revenue generation.

The body, however, appealed to the Minister to appoint some of its members into the land administration committee in order to give professional input that would help the city.