Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has said that sanity in the built environment, which guarantees the protection of lives and property of citizens, is a shared responsibility of all and not only that of the government and its agencies.
The Governor disclosed this in his keynote address at the Lagos State Physical Planning Permit Authority (LASPPPA) Stakeholders’ Engagement on the benefits of voluntary compliance to Physical Planning Permit Laws, held on Wednesday 8th June, 2022, at Landmark Event Centre, Victoria Island.
Sanwo-Olu said the stakeholders’ engagement lends credence to the commitment of his administration to forestall unsavoury incidents that have led to the loss of lives and property in the built sector as well as the desire to ensure sanity in the Lagos State built environment.
He added that the stakeholders’ engagement was convened to provide an opportunity to engage, sensitise and enlighten critical stakeholders, including industry players such as property owners, property developers, builders and citizens at the grassroots, community, local and State levels.
He explained that LASPPPA has been working with relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies (MDAs) of government as well as stakeholders to achieve more sustainable and livable communities devoid of incidents that threaten human lives and cause avoidable building collapse.
Sanwo-Olu, who was represented at the event by the Secretary to the State Government, Mrs. Folasade Jaji, informed that a core part of LASPPPA’s mandate is Public Advocacy, Education and Enlightenment geared towards ensuring compliance with the provision of the physical planning regulations and laws.
He enjoined participants at the forum to air their views, concerns and peculiar challenges bordering on effective compliance and enforcement of the State physical planning permit law and physical development within their areas.
The Governor encouraged all stakeholders in the sector to champion the cause of restoring the State’s physical planning and urban development masterplan by voluntary compliance with physical planning regulations, which are in tandem with the LASPPPA’s new Whistleblower Policy tagged: “See Something, Say Something”.
He noted that the resources committed to carrying out enforcement and compliance exercises in the different parts of the State could be channeled to other areas if all stakeholders embrace voluntary compliance to physical planning standards and report building as well as physical development infractions.
While affirming that the outcome of the stakeholders’ engagement would be given due attention, Governor Sanwo-Olu implored the citizens to see their roles in birthing and maintaining a livable and habitable Lagos as a civic responsibility by always reporting unauthorised physical developments.
On his part, the Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Dr. Idris Salako, stressed that the forum borders on the way forward in the quest to achieve a sustainable built environment in Lagos State, which can only be achieved with the cooperation of all.
He maintained that LASPPPA has the herculean task of issuing Planning Permits and ensuring people’s awareness of and support for the vital planning requirement, saying that the stakeholders’ meeting aptly focused on the theme: “Benefits of Voluntary Compliance”, in tandem with ongoing efforts to promote wholesale adoption of positive behaviour towards the physical environment of the State.
In his contribution, the General Manager of LASPPPA, Tpl. Kehinde Osinaike, explained that the concept of the stakeholders’ meeting is premised on the need to bring residents closer to the Authority by enlightening everyone on the roles expected of them to ensure a more secured, livable, functional and sustainable environment.
In his words: “It is important to inform this gathering that in a total departure from the past, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu believes strongly in voluntary compliance approach to Planning Permit and that is why we have played down on the use of force in the implementation of physical planning policies and programmes”.
“It is in fulfillment of government policy in this direction that LASPPPA recently introduced a series of innovations that made Planning Permit processes attractive, friendly and seamless to the public. Amongst the innovations is the 10-Day Deal that makes it compulsory to complete the process of Planning Permit within 10 working days”, Osinaike stated.