The Housing Development Advocacy Network (HDAN), a prominent civil society organization in Nigeria’s housing sector, has called for a criminal investigation into the approval of a contentious real estate regulation bill.
HDAN claimed that President Bola Tinubu was given false information and misled into endorsing the bill, which did not undergo the necessary legislative review in the National Assembly.
According to HDAN’s executive director Festus Adebayo, the organisation was shocked to learn through a media report that the bill was rushed through to presidential assent without vetting by the House of Representatives and Senate.
He said “For us at HDAN, we have been monitoring the movement of the bill before it suddenly disappeared which prevented us from knowing how far the bill has gone.
“The last information we heard concerning such a related bill was the passage of the real estate regulation bill for FCT.
“We wondered how many interest groups are pushing for different bills that will serve their selfish interest rather than the overall interest of the sector under the real estate regulation bill”.
“At various times, we have called for the regulation of the real estate sector for the purpose of protecting the integrity of the sector, promoting professionalism in the sector, and protecting both the buyers of real estate products, investors and developers.
“From all indications, this bill they are trying to manipulate the president to sign will definitely not achieve the desired objectives we have just stated for the overall interest of the sector.
“HDAN is therefore calling for criminal investigation of those behind the bill that was wrongly pushed for Mr President’s assent.
“We are also calling the minister of Housing and Urban Development to intervene by setting up a committee that will have representatives of all professional bodies and Civil society to review the available bills for all-inclusive bill that achieve the goal of professionals using the real estate business with clear rules of operations.
According to HDAN, the way out is to repackage the bill for the interest of all stakeholders and professionals in the sector.
“We are using this opportunity to call on the Nigerian Minister of Housing and Urban Development to urgently set up a committee that will look into the failed bill and address all salient areas for the overall interest of the sector.