Lagos State government on Tuesday said it has confiscated two houses used in defrauding unsuspecting residents in the state, warning that any fraudster caught henceforth would be prosecuted.
Special Adviser to the Governor on Housing, Mrs Toke Benson Awoyinka, disclosed this at a press briefing to commemorate the first year in office of Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu led administration in the state.
According to her, the government has resolved to take such strong measures to stop developers or agents from defrauding members of the public in the state, disclosing further that her office is currently prosecuting a developer who duped members of the public in Ketu area, and also another developer who defrauded people in Mafoluku area.
Benson, who is also in charge of the Lagos State Real Estate Transaction Department (LASRETRAD), said the government had also seized their properties, adding that her office was working on how to sell the properties while the proceeds from the sale would be used to settle the defrauded members of the public.
She, however, appealed to members of the public to always patronise agents and developers who were registered with her agency.
“We have successfully reviewed the Lagos State Estate Agency Regulatory Law, Cap L28, Laws of Lagos State, 2015 (“Law”) presently in operation in the state, which provides for the establishment of the Lagos State Real Estate Regulatory Authority.
“The essence of this Law is to regulate real estate transactions in Lagos State by identify persons eligible to be licensed as Real Estate Practitioners and provides for the issuance or renewal of annual permits,” she said.
Benson said the authority had the responsibility for maintaining a register of Licensed Real Estate practitioners and sanctioning of unlicensed Estate Agents in the state, declaring that there was a need to sanitise real estate transactions in the state.
“However, there is a need to sanitise Real Estate transactions in Lagos State. In achieving this, the state must have a database of persons dealing in real estate transactions for it to control their activities.
“Thus, the state must amend the Law to reflect its efforts in monitoring the transactions of real estate in a way that is proactive so as to protect its citizens and rid the state of fraudsters,” she said.
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