The Lagos State Government has placed embargo on the approval and construction of filling stations in all parts of the State till further notice, while a definite action will soon be taken on indiscriminate construction of event centres across the State, the State Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Wasiu Anifowose has said.
Anifowose, who disclosed this on Tuesday at the ongoing 2017 Ministerial Press briefing in Alausa as part of activities marking the second-year anniversary of Governor Akinwunmi Ambode’s administration, said government has already decided not to grant construction permit for filling stations pending the inventory of existing ones.
Responding to questions on the recent oil spillage in Alimosho, Anifowose said the decision of government was necessary in view of the need to take proper inventory of the existing filling stations with the view to determining those that should be removed, all in a bid to ensure public safety.
According to him, “What happened in Alimosho was because of pipeline vandalism. If people have not been greedy to vandalize pipelines, we will not be seeing what is happening. But be rest assured that no permit for filling station in Lagos State will be granted till further notice. I have told the General Manager of the concerned agency; the management team of the agency has taken a decision and we will not grant any approval until we take inventory and see what we have.”
He said the State Government was also working with the Federal Government to relocate Tank Farms in residential areas in Apapa, adding that a definite pronouncement would be made on that in due course.
The Commissioner also warned owners of structures under high tension cables to relocate in their best interest as government would spare no effort in removing such illegal structures, adding that Event Centres illegally located would also be demolished.
He said: “When this government came on board, what we did was that we set up a Committee and they are going round the State to take inventory of Event Centres. I like to state categorically that any development that does not comply with the Master Plan of the area of location will be removed. So, our agency is already working on it and they should be able to give us report in the next three to four weeks.”
Speaking on activities of the Ministry in the last one year, Anifowose said due to proactive steps and reforms initiated, the State Government has achieved considerable reduction in building collapse. He, however, reiterated that it is still an offence in the State for any physical developments including renovation, fencing and demolition to be embarked upon without approval.
“I must urge all Lagosians to partner with the State Government in reporting illegal developments and developers or owners of buildings who cut corners and use substandard materials in construction work. Furthermore, it is considered a necessity that prospective buyers or tenants should demand to see the Planning Permit or Layout Approval of a building or Estate respectively before down payments are made, to deter developers or owners from circumventing the law,” Anifowose said.
He said that efforts are also ongoing to relocate traders in Computer Village, Ikeja to Katangwa in Agbado/Oke-Odo and convert the area into a world-class ICT Park, as well as Mile 12 Market to Imota and Okobaba Sawmill to Agbowa.