Ambode Bows To Pressure From Lagosians, Reduces Land Use Charge

The administration of Akinwunmi Ambode, governor of Lagos state, has reduced the rates of the land use charge.

The decision was taken at an executive council meeting which held on Thursday.

The government had reviewed the rates upward, charging property solely occupied by the owner for residential purpose at the rate of 0.076 percent per annum; property occupied by the owner and tenant(s) or third parties at 0.256 percent per annum; while investment property fully occupied by tenants or third party(ies) for revenue generation at 0.76 percent per annum.

It also threatened to penalise those who do not make payment after receiving notice. Failure to pay between 45 and 75 days attracted 50 percent increase; after 105 days, a 100 percent increase. The law prescribed that a property shall be liable to enforcement if payment is not made after 135 days of notice.

Addressing reporters at the end of the meeting, Akinyemi Ashade, commissioner for finance, said commercial property owners would get 50 percent discount. Owner-occupier 25 percent, while there would be a waiver for late payment and tax credit for those who are prompt in payment.

Payment in instalment was also introduced in the new arrangement.

The government took the action after the pressure from individuals, pressure groups and civil society organisations (CSOs).

The Ikeja branch of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA) had given Ambode a five-day ultimatum to reverse the law.

When the ultimatum elapsed, the lawyers took to the streets of Ikeja.

Malachi Ugwumadu, a lawyer and president, Committee for the Defence of Human Rights (CDHR), had said so many aspects of the law were murderous.

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