The Lagos State Government has called on residents to comply with the Greening Law or risk being fined N250,000.
The General Manager, Lagos State Parks and Gardens Agency(LASPARK), Mrs Bilikiss Adebiyi-Abiola, in a statement on Thursday, said the state government had resolved to enforce total compliance with the Greening Provision across the state.
Adebiyi-Abiola said that the agency had carried out enforcement operations at Ikeja, Oniru in Victoria Island, Lekki Phase 1 and Ikoyi environs.
She said that the pronounced disregard toward greening requirement by private establishments and other property owners across the state was repressing government’s efforts to mitigate the negative effects of climate change.
”Our resolve to enforce the law against recalcitrant corporate institutions and property owners, who have refused to comply with the state’s provision on beautification of setbacks, is in line with government’s quest to improve the green cover in the state,” the general manager said.
She bemoaned the flagrant defiance towards the law by property owners and commercial establishments, adding that the Act that compelled them would fully be applied henceforth.
”According to Section 19 of the Law establishing LASPARK, all tenement owners and occupiers shall landscape and beautify the perimeter areas of their properties.
”The neglect, failure and refusal of which shall warrant the penalty of Two Hundred and Fifty Thousand Naira (N250, 000.00) or such sums as the State shall incur in doing same on behalf of the tenement, or six (6) months imprisonment or other noncustodial sentence,” Adebiyi-Abiola said.
She said that owners of commercial properties would be strongly compelled to conform to the stated provision.
The LASPARK boss called on owners of petrol stations not to contravene the status of approval granted by the Ministry of Physical Planning, which stipulates that 20 per cent of their property be reserved for greening.
”It is disturbing that owners of Petrol Filling Stations, particularly the new entrants, have imbibed the act of concretising their entire surroundings.
”They are neglecting the provision of the law which specifically states that a certain percentage of their space must be reserved for greening,” she said.
Adebiyi-Abiola said LASPARK was now poised to begin the prosecution of erring owners of these petrol stations and other commercial properties according to the law, unless they show a desire to abide by the State’s provision.
”We have commenced total clampdown on defaulters of greening regulations across the state.
”Just last month, a building at Alexander in Ikoyi was sealed off for cutting down trees without the Agency’s permission.
”We urge those who have been served abatement notices to come forward and engage the Agency for necessary action,” Adebiyi-Abiola said.
She said that the enforcement was a continuous exercise geared toward achieving appreciable conformity and also to constrain prospective property owners anywhere in the state to earmark appropriate portions for greening.
The environmentalist called for private sector participation in the drive towards the attainment of a green society.
Edited by Tayo Ikujuni/Oluwole Sogunle