Babatunde Raji Fashola (SAN), the minister of power, works and housing, has deemed it necessary to change the country’s house rent collection system.
Fashola noted this during his inaugural media meeting recently in Abuja, where he unveiled his strategic plans for the infrastructure sector.
According to The Leadership, the minister pointed out that the way rent was paid in Nigeria leads to an accounting mismatch.
He said: “The way we collect rent is something that must change. If we are collecting two years rent in advance from a salary that is going to be earned in arrears monthly, there’s an accounting mismatch.
“This is something many of us have experienced, you pay two years rent in advance money you haven’t earned. Something is distorted somewhere in our accounting model. We must all resolve, property owners alike, that maybe if we changed the way we collected rent alone many houses that are unoccupied, will be occupied.”
Fashola also spoke in relation to the housing deficit in the country, he said: “I am inclined to think that if we just change the payment system for housing we will accommodate a significant number of people”.
The ex-governor of Lagos state went on to emphasize the need to allow the rent payment system match the salary payment system.
He said: “If salaries are paid in arrears, rent should be paid in arears.” He added that a more rigorous enforcement system for eviction would then be worked out for anyone in default.”
It would be recalled that Fashola said he is planning to address housing deficits, provide good roads and increase power generation in Nigeria with extra 2, 000 megawatts.
In his short-term agenda, the minister stressed that the Lagos-Ibadan expressway and the second Niger Bridge are of great importance and would be given urgent attention by the current administration.