Nigeria’s Delta State to Collect Rent that Landowners Owe
|December 12, 2013||Posted by Staff under Geonomics In Action|
Delta State Government has announced plans to start collecting ground rent from property owners across the state.
Commissioner for Lands, Mr. Patrick Ferife said the decision to fully enforce the payment of ground rent was reached in Asaba at a meeting between officials of the state internal revenue board and officials of the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development.
Each property/plot owner was required by law to pay rent to the governor.
According to him, the focus for now will be on urban centres of the state even as he spelt out the rates for both commercial and residential plots/property.
Ferife said ground rent was not new but that property/plot owners have continued to default in their civic responsibility, insisting that the practice must stop as government was going all out to enforce the law to the letter.
“Like I said, we are setting up a task force to move from house to house to collect the rent. One of the challenges we have been having is that those that pay ground rent are those whose properties are registered and you find out that a very high percentage of property owners have not registered their properties or plots.
“But we are going to change that. Whether you register your property with the ministry or not, we are coming to you with the demand notice.”
Ed. Notes: Let’s hope that the government does not demand more than the annual rental value of a location as some businessmen fear.
And however much the Governor receives, let’s hope he uses the recovered rents for the benefit of the whole society.
It’d also be nice if the Governor used some of the public revenue to pay citizens a dividend, so they’d need not fear registering their land and paying the owed rent.
Further, it’d be wonderful if the Governor simultaneously repealed the counterproductive taxes, such as those that fall on income, sales, and buildings. With those taxes off their backs, people would become so much more productive, they’d enjoy greater income, and bid up the price or rent for locations. So government could retrieve plenty of revenue, even without its counterproductive taxes.
Take all these geonomic steps and Nigeria could cure itself of its resource curse.