Dr. Idris Salako

As part of efforts to enhance the ease of doing business, the Lagos State Government is instituting a number of reforms to boost Physical Planning services and instill public confidence.

This was disclosed by the Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Dr. Idris Salako during the Annual Ministerial Press Briefing, marking the first year of Mr. Babajide Olusola Sanwo-Olu as Governor of Lagos State at the JJT Park in Alausa on Thursday.

He highlighted the reforms to include: the inauguration of an ombudsman in the form of the Lagos State Physical Planning and Building Control Appeals Committee that would among others address petitions on contraventions of the urban development laws and; passage of a new regulation, tagged the Lagos State Physical Planning and Building Control Regulations 2019, serving as the framework for the operations of the Lagos State Physical Planning Permit Authority (LASPPPA) and the Lagos State Building Control Agency (LASBCA) in order to enhance the activities of these agencies.

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Other reforms are the devolution of Planning Permit Approval Powers and the creation of more district offices to fast tract approval process and enhance the ease of doing business in Lagos State and the ongoing digitization of the process of the Ministry and Agencies which the Ministry is embarking upon to adopt electronic technology in order to enhance its performance.

“The Ministry has received and is currently considering proposals for the application of change detection technology, Geo Satellite Images and data for monitoring and tracking changes in developmental activities with a view to detecting and discouraging illegal development,” he said

Salako said that the reforms, which were intended to assist the successful conduct of activities of the Ministry and its Agencies and ultimately enhance the sustainability of the environment, were already assisting in the delivery of the mandate of the Ministry, especially the issuance of planning permits, carrying out regulatory and other activities.

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In this connection, he said that to further enhance the Ease of Doing Business in Lagos State, the state government had rejuvenated the Electronic Planning Permit (EPP) platform and received 232 applications through the platform in the last 365 days.

He explained that the Ministry, through the Lagos State Physical Planning Permit Authority (LASPPPA) granted a total of 2,366 approvals for various uses including commercial, mixed use, institutional and hotel, agricultural, among others”

As part of his Ministry’s scorecard, the Commissioner disclosed that the Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development facilitated the Lagos Island Revitalisation project by clearing and delivering to the Ministry of Health the site meant for health facility on Adeniji-Adele Road, in addition to clearing and delivering the old Jankara Market for other State Development projects.

He said that the aim of the Lagos Island Revitalisation project was to address the issue of over-stretched basic infrastructural facilities and reposition her socio-economic status and enhance environmental sustainability.

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Salako also hinted that the regulatory activities of the Ministry were on course as a total of 14,505 enforcement notices were served on distressed structures and illegal and non-conforming structures through the combined efforts of the Ministry and its Agencies.

His words: “In the same vein, the Ministry and its Agencies identified 8,428 on-going building construction, 543 distressed building and served 2,3.”