No tax clearance, no building permit, Ekiti govt declares

Ekiti State government has warned that henceforth, anybody who wants government’s approval for his building or is seeking permit to build on any piece of land, must show evidence of paying correct taxes to the government.

The decision, which was announced on Wednesday, also included that a government team “will duly assess the value of the land, the type of structures being proposed among other steps to either accept or reject the tax paper so presented.”

The decisions, which were reached at a meeting between the governor, Mr Ayodele Fayose and officials of the state’s Ministry of Lands, included that “state government will soon hold an interactive seminar cum session with professionals and others related to the building industry in both the private and public sectors.”

Governor Fayose also gave the directive that some temporary staff be employed by the ministry to further boost its enforcement capacity.

He also directed that some motorcycles be purchased, while he released a brand new pick up van for the ministry.

Fayose, however, warned that any official of the ministry found wanting would be severely dealt with.

“The ministry is supposed to be one of the cash cows of the state government. In other states, they generate huge revenue from the Ministry of Lands because people have to build. I am not impressed with the performance of the ministry so far. What we have are unapproved structures springing up everywhere. We also have a situation whereby people were given approval after being poorly assessed.

“Approving officials must be guided in what they do. They must not make themselves scapegoats on matters that do not concern them. Correct assessment of values of structures must be done. From now on, approving officials must put their names as well as their signatures on whatever structures they approve.

“We must evolve a system that whoever is seeking approval or permit be drawn into the tax net and subsequently followed up. The state government will provide atmosphere for you to work, but you must reciprocate that by improving on your performance,” he said.