Dr Idris Salako, the Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Lagos State, has reiterated the commitment of the government to zero-tolerance for illegal building constructions in the state.
Salako said this while delivering a keynote speech at an interactive session with the Lagos State Physical Planning Permit Authority (LASPPPA) Stakeholders in Lagos.
The theme of the meeting held at Agege was: “Repositioning of LASPPPA For Better Service Delivery”.
He said that the state government had made efforts to remove bottlenecks and enhance the performance of the physical planning approving agency.
According to him, the administration has instituted policy reforms toward making the processing of planning permits seamless and in conformity with international best practices.
The commissioner added that the government had put in place the Physical Planning and Building Control Appeals’ Committee, as a public engagement channel, to amicably resolve complaints bordering on physical planning and development control in the state.
“Chief among these reforms are the creation of more district offices, the devolution of planning permit powers, the revision of standard operating procedures of the agency and the ongoing digitalisation of its processes.
“Also, the Electronic Planning Permit (ePP) platform is being upgraded to full automation for a hitch-free, virtual and online planning permit processing.
“It is worth mentioning that planning permit can now be granted within 10 days of submission and compliance with statutory payments and documentations.
“Therefore, as stakeholders in the built environment of Lagos State; be it property owner, developers or uptakers, it is your responsibility to ensure that you build right in accordance with the physical planning laws of the state.”
He said that it was mandatory for builders to obtain the necessary approvals from LASPPPA before carrying out physical development.
He added that such physical development had to be supervised by the Lagos State Building Control Agency, for stage certification, thus, necessitating the restatement of our policy on zero-tolerance for illegal building construction.
Mr Kehinde Osinaike, LASPPPA General Manager, said that the essence of the interactive session was to dialogue with the residents of the state to know their challenges in order to serve them better.
Osinaike said that the huge population of Lagos State and the limited landmass of the state, called for a serious and effective physical planning.
With that, the incidences of haphazard development and building collapse would not continue to pose a threat to the citizens’ collective existence, he said.
“Specifically, within this environment, Agege and the neighbouring communities, there is a surge in the rate at which people convert residential buildings for commercial purposes.
” There are cases where old buildings are being redeveloped into new structures without obtaining necessary approvals from government.
“This type of practice must stop. We need to cooperate with the government in this regard because the consequences of these uncontrolled physical developments, usually come with huge human and material losses,” he said.
The Chairman, Orile-Agege Local Council Development Area, Mr Johnson Babatunde, assured the agency of the readiness and the commitment of the LCDA’s residents, to comply with the stipulations of the government regarding physical developments.
Babatundesaid that the overall motive was to collectively achieve a more sustainable and livable environment for growth and development of Lagos state.