Land use Charge: ODIRS seals off 85 Buildings, Commercial centres in Akure

The Ondo State government through the State Internal Revenue Service (ODIRS) has started sanctioning defaulters of its Land Use Charge, with over 85 facilities shut down.

79 house residential building and 6 commercial building were served due to seal across Akure the Ondo State capital on Tuesday.

The Ondo State Internal Revenue Service (ODIRS) has therefore given property owners who were served due to seal 15-day ultimatum to pay their charge.

The ODIRS Assistant Director, Property Tax, Bamidele Falade stated this while embarking on enforcement process across Akure, the Ondo State capital.

Officials of ODIRS during the enforcement operations

Falade said: “We’ve been in the media on several occasions and we’ve taken the opportunity to educate people on the need to pay their Land Use Charge. People have been served Bill and some have been given default notice.

“We are now in the last quarter of the year, so we are embarking on enforcement process. Nine months is already gone. They have enough time to have made payment. For those who have failed to comply with the provision of the law, we are now conducting exercise to enforce them to make payment and this exercise may eventually lead to sealing of some properties that have consistently defaulted the land use charge”.

Falade charged residents of the state to to pay relevant charges to avoid sealing of property.

Also speaking, ODIRS Head of Legal Department, Mr. Adebayo Ogunsuyi said the Land Use Charge is govern by the Ondo State Land Use Charge Law, enacted in 2014 which began operation in 2017.

“In that 2017, the governor of Ondo State, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu SAN, out of his magnanimity introduced what is called ‘the amnesty rate’, that is to say, everywhere is divided into three. We have the upper zone, the middle zone and the base zone and each zone has it’s rate of payment for Land Use Charge.

“We are giving them a 15-day ultimatum to pay the land use charge.

Ordinarily, under the law, we are to serve them demand notice. The demand notice is for 30 days, if after that day, they fail to pay, the ODIRS has the power to seal up the property. But ODIRS looked at it that its pertinent to give them further 15 days. But after the fifteen days, if they failed to pay, we will get court order to seal the property”.

Ogunsuyi noted that “this is the first face of the enforcement exercise across the 18 local government areas of the state.

“At the moment, we have identified at least, 500 properties spreading across residential and commercial areas in Akure South Local Goverment”.

He added that the ODIRS taskforce has been empowered to begin enforcement on commercial and industrial properties in the state in the next 15 days, stressing that actions would be taken against property owners who have failed to pay their Land Use Charge.

Ogunsuyi therefore pleaded with property owners to pay their bills to avoid sanctions.