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Abuja ground rent deadline extended amidst debt collection drive

FCT Minister Grants Reprieve, but Sanctions Loom as Payment Deadline Shifts to December 14

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The Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Nyesom Wike, has granted a reprieve to land allottees in Abuja by extending the payment deadline for ground rents until December 14, 2023. The move follows the expiration of the initial deadline that was set for those owing ground rents in the capital city.

In September, the FCT Administration published the land titles of individuals, corporate organizations, and government agencies, reminding them of their obligation to pay ground rent annually, as stipulated in their Certificates of Occupancy issued by the FCTA. The publication, signed by FCTA Permanent Secretary Olusade Adesola, warned debtors to settle their dues within two weeks from the date of publication to avoid potential revocation of their titles.

The Minister, Nyesom Wike, had previously emphasized the repercussions of non-payment, dispelling the notion that the ground rent directive was an empty threat. Despite the stern warning, the FCT Director of Information, Muhammad Sule, announced on Sunday that the minister had opted to extend the payment deadline until December 14.

Sule acknowledged that the earlier deadline had opened the door for potential sanctions. However, in response to the sustained engagement from affected allottees and to accommodate those still in the process of settling their ground rent bills, the minister decided to grant additional time.

While providing this extension, the FCTA anticipates generating over N30 billion from ground rent payments across the territory. The administration aims to balance the need for fiscal responsibility with the acknowledgment of the challenges faced by those still in line for bill collection.

As the extended deadline approaches, land allottees are urged to promptly settle their ground rent obligations to avoid potential consequences and ensure the sustained development and maintenance of the Federal Capital Territory.

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