Former Minister, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola (SAN) has urged states to reform tenancy laws and make monthly rent payments mandatory. He believes Nigeria’s housing challenges are worsened by the common practice of 1-3 years advance rent.
Speaking at his book launch in Lagos, Fashola lamented the heavy burden of lengthy upfront payments on tenants. He suggested bringing them down from 3 years to 1 year, or ideally to monthly collections that will coincide with payment of salaries.
The SAN questioned why so much housing in rural areas remains unused while cities face deficits and high rents. He blamed outdated rent structures, saying: “If we have not consciously addressed this, we have not done anything.”
As author of the new book “Nigerian Public Discourse : The Interplay of Empirical Evidence and Hyperbole” Fashola also emphasized the importance of accurate data for development planning. He described information and data as the most vital currency that will enable governments properly assess needs around water, food, shelter, and more.
The event featured speakers like presidential aide Tolu Ogunlesi and entrepreneur Toyosi Akerele-Ogunsiji. Dignitaries in attendance included Chief of Staff, Femi Gbajabiamila, Lagos Deputy Governor, Obafemi Hamzat; and Mrs Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire, former Senior Special Assistant to the President of Nigeria on Sustainable Development Goals, former Deputy Governor Sarah Sosan, former Rivers State Governor Rotimi Amaechi, other politicians and Students