To have a contemporary and relevant law guiding planning principles and practice in the state, the Ondo state Ministry of Physical Planning and Urban Development has taken the bold step to review the state Urban and Regional Planning Law in line with constant change in the environment.
According to the Honourable Commssioner, Physical Planning and Urban Development, Prince Solagbade Amodeni, speaking during a stakeholders meeting held in his office at Oyemekun road, Akure,, The law which was domesticated in 1999 is due for review to make provision for new development in order to ensure its functionality and efficiency and further boost the aesthetic value of towns, cities and settlements.
Prince Amodeni stated that after the paasage of the law, the state government will expect total compliance from the populace as this will not only drive revenue, but will also improve on the functionality and livability of the environment . After ensuring that it is not scuttled but successfully passed into law, the government will leave no stone unturned to enforce it, he said
The Chairman of the Review Committee and Director, Physical Planning department in the ministry, Townplanner (TPL) Alonge Zachariah stated clearly that the existing provision has become obsolete, hence the need for a radical change that will enhance citizen’s participation in planning process, and equally give room for variation to suit peculiar situations.
Citing some of the laws, the committee Chairman said in cases of road expansion and other similar developments, compensation for a demolished approved structure must be paid within 24 months of its demolition and the law equally states that legal action shall be taken 21 days after the issuance of Demolition Notice in cases of contraventions.
Professor Omole F.K., the state Chairman Nigeria Institute of Town Planners (NITP), who described the review as a right step in the right direction said without the law, there will be no physical planning and without physical planning, the society will be in chaos. The law, he affirmed will equally serve as succor and amour for town planning, being a legal backing for the ministry’s and Town planner’s actions in the course of duty.
The National Secretary NITP, Tpl Gbolabo Osunsanmi who commended the efforts of the state Commissioner for Physical Planning and Urban Development, Prince Solagbade Amodeni, maintained that, the review must be done in line with what is operational in other states of the federation as 12 states out of the 36 states have their own already domesticated, so Ondo state must not be left off the train.
In addition, Tpl Amodu Idowu, NITP State Secretary, also the Deputy Director, Monitoring and Enforcement Department of the ministry stated that, the law when implemented, will serve as Bible for all Town planners in the state and this he said explained why Town planners in the state were all invited to be part of the review as there must be a synergy between the state government and NITP on issues bothering on town planning. He believed that when the law gets to the State House of Assembly, relevant stakeholders will equally be invited.
Coutesy Folashade Oladeinde