The Chairman House of Representatives Ad-hoc Committee on the investigations of the activities of real estate developers in Abuja, Hon. Blessing Onuh, has said that the sector is bedeviled by sharp practices and must be sanitized.
Onuh said in a statement on Monday that the House of Representatives has mandated her committee to ensure that all the complaints by the public against the real estate developer are looked into.
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She said the House has given the committee the go ahead to conduct investigation into the operations of real estate developers in the FCT and also liaise with stakeholders to create legislation to sanitize the sector and curb sharp practices.
She that the committee has called for submission of memorandum and invited all stakeholders in the real estate sector, government agencies, investors, home-buyers and the general public to a one-day public hearing on the investigation.
“The public hearing is slated to hold on Thursday, October 28, 2021 at the Conference Room 028 of the House of Representatives complex,” Onuh said.
There have been complaints that estate developers take money from subscribers without fulfilling their end of the bargain by providing the residential houses as promised.
In August 2021, the Independent Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offenses Commission (ICPC) announced that it had recovered N53bn from one of such developers.
Asides failing to deliver, they also lease or sell the same properties to multiple clients, deliver poorly constructed homes, among other irregularities.
Also, a 2020 report by Civil Society Legislative Advocacy Centre (CISLAC), an affiliate to Transparency International (TI), identified cities like Abuja, Lagos, and Port-Harcourt as Nigeria’s major black spots of high-level capital flights.
The report said media and court reports point to the involvement of criminals running fraud syndicates, drug trafficking and buying up or developing properties.
The report said, “The Nigerian real estate sector has long provided opportunities for persons and companies to launder illegally acquired funds.
“The share of the real estate services to the nominal Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is estimated at around seven per cent per annum. It is a significant contributor to the economy and has the capacity to fast-track the growth of the nation’s economy, if adequately structured.”