Demolition of Illegal Structures: Hope for Builders as Lagos State Gov. Sanwo-Olu Finally Addresses Issues

Following the agitation against the demolition of illegal structures in the state, the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has urged stakeholders in the housing sector to embrace global best practices to mitigate disasters in the sector.

The governor, who was represented by the State Commissioner for Housing, Moruf Akinderu-Fatai, said this at the Real Estate Market Place Conference and Exhibitions, themed “Real Estate Regulation: A Panacea for Disaster Mitigation and Recovery in the Built Industry”, held in Lagos recently.

He said, “To minimize the risk of disasters and enhance the resilience of structures, it has become compulsory for relevant authorities to require individuals/organizations to purchase insurance coverage against natural disasters. We will adopt a holistic approach that combines regulatory measures with other strategies to achieve more comprehensive disaster mitigation and recovery outcomes.

“Real estate regulation, when wielded effectively, becomes a shield against the vagaries of the industry. It begins with the establishment of stringent building codes and standards that ensure our structures are not just habitats but fortresses capable of withstanding the tumultuous winds, floods, and quakes that nature may unleash. “Through systematic zoning and land-use policies, we can intelligently plan our urban spaces, steering development away from high-risk areas and minimizing the potential for disaster-induced damage.”

He said by prioritizing safety, enforcing building codes, and promoting transparency, stakeholders could create resilient communities that are better equipped to withstand and recover from disasters.

Sanwo-Olu noted, “Let us work hand in hand to advocate for robust real estate regulation, for it is through our collective efforts that we can build a safer and more sustainable future.”

He stated that his administration was aware that the various unprecedented challenges in the sector if not addressed could contribute to loss of sanity and lack of confidence of all relevant stakeholders in the real estate sector.

In the same vein, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Housing, Barakat Bakare, said the sector had been bedeviled with various disasters in recent times, ranging from building collapse, demolitions, inability to recoup investments, agents’ fraud, etc.

She declared that there was a need to unite and consciously change the narration.

She said, “Considering the huge opportunities in real estate, the stakes are higher as there are several risks and dangers that could make or mar us as players. However, embracing best practices is the sure way to mitigate disasters in the sector.

“There are established quality control measures, time-tested ethics, and operational principles applicable in all professions. Despite laid down rules and tenets, we cannot curb the innate human tendencies of some who will always attempt to circumvent and sabotage extant rules.”

Bakare, therefore, urged stakeholders to embrace regulations and compliance, which would help mitigate potential disasters that may occur due to non-compliance.

“Our work ensures that investments are also secured, return on such investment is guaranteed, lives are preserved and major tragedies of life are averted,” she averred.


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