Lagos State Government has promised to create an enduring business-driven property development market in the State, through the digitisation of all land-related transactions with effect from year 2021.

Governor Babjide Sanwo-Olumade this known while addressing property investors at the maiden Real Estate Marketplace Conference and Exhibitions organised by the Lagos State Real Estate Regulatory Authority (LASRERA), with the theme: “Unearthing real opportunities in Real Estate” at Eko Hotel and Suites, Victoria Island.

The Governor expressed belief that the automation of land-related issues including Certificates of Occupancy, C of O, and Building Plans will enhance investor confidence and hasten the approval process.

Disclosing that the Lands Bureau has already concluded plans for migration from its present mode of operations to a digital platform, Sanwo-Olu said that when the web-based platform becomes operational, there will be no need for applicants seeking for Certificates of Occupancy (C of O), as well as survey and building plan approvals, to physically submit paper documents for authorisation.

He envisaged that the new development would bring about quick turnaround time in land transactions and boost private investors’ confidence in the provision of home ownership models that will address deficits in housing because the entire process will be accessible from homes and workplaces.

“We have given our commitment to this, because of the need to improve the turnaround time from when people submit their requests for approval and the time the authorisation is completed. We cannot afford to disappoint private investors and applicants seeking real-time approval. We are raising our capacity so that we can respond to the requests and discharge them,” Governor Sanwo-Olu said.

While warning against sharp practices in the processing and issuance of necessary building documents, Mr. Governor emphasised that, when fully operational, the online procedure will curb unscrupulous practices in the issuance of C of O, Building Plans and other title documents.

Reiterating his administration’s commitment to mass housing through partnerships with the private sector, Sanwo-Olu charged real estate investors and private developers to divert their investment into rebuilding the mainland while he gave an assurance that all parts of the State, including the hinterlands, will receive attention in terms of infrastructural development.

“I need to charge the real estate investors that everybody needs not build in Sangotedo or Ibeju Lekki. Let us go to the mainland and start regeneration of the assets in that part of Lagos. This way, we would be redistributing wealth and creating opportunities for our citizens,” the Governor stated.

The Special Adviser to the Governor on Housing, Mrs. Toke Benson-Awoyinka, in her address said the conference was held with an objective to bring stakeholders in the property business in contact with relevant Government agencies to address bottlenecks slowing down property transactions.

She explained that LASRERA was created with a mandate to bridge the gap of credibility in the property business, pointing out that the government responded to the yearnings of industry players having realised there were genuine real estate practitioners and property developers, as well as genuine home and property seekers, who were desirous of transparency in real estate transactions in Lagos.

Benson-Awoyinka said the regulatory agency, since inception, had set processes in motion to change the negative image of the property development business and check malpractices which the sector had faced in the last decades.

She said: “As a Government that is determined to bridge the housing deficit in the State, we are aware of our role in not just the provision of houses, but to also create an enabling environment for the private sector working hand in hand to a desired end.

“We are making a renewed appeal to investors in the sector to team up with the State Government to create a homeownership model that will help address the deficits observed in the housing market in the State, through Public Private Partnership (PPP) initiative, to provide mass housing for our people”, the Special Adviser added.