The Enugu State House of Assembly Committee on Lands and Foreign Investment has frowned at the high rate of N160, 000 that surveyors in Enugu State charge to survey a plot of land.
The Chairman of the Committee, Mr Ibenaku Onoh, frowned at this in Enugu on Thursday during a meeting with the Surveyor- General of the state, Mr Godwin Ishiwu and other principal officers of the department.
Onoh said that the meeting was a follow-up to the previous meeting they had with the Deputy Surveyor-General, Mr Boniface Odiha at the Assembly complex in August this year.
He said that the committee urged the deputy surveyor general then to furnish the House with the rate of survey within the neighboring states which he declined to provide.
The committee’s chairman said that the cost of surveying a plot of land in Enugu is N160, 000 since May this year which was not applicable in any part of the country.
He demanded to know the cause of the increase and how to remedy it to suit the current economic challenges’ in the state.
Onoh also complained that out of N160, 000 that was charged by surveyors in Enugu, only N1,000 was remitted to the state government’s purse.
While responding to the questions, the surveyor-general of the state said that the decision was the making of the surveyor private practitioners of in Nigeria which comprised mostly of private surveyors in practice in the state.
Ishiwu said that they domesticated the fees based on their own perception of what was obtainable at the national levels in 1996.
“The Federal government gives scale of fees to practitioners in construction industry and it has been a guide for practitioner in the construction.
“Some variables like inflation, cost of equipment, cost of transport and accommodation is what we base our reviews on,” he said.
In 2008, the Nigeria Institute of Surveyors (NIS) printed the national charge list the professionals had been using in which the minimum rate for national is N120,000, so states are cuing in based on the economy of their states.
“By 2017, the NIS met and said that the national review has brought out a booklet for reviews so they now decided to domesticate that in Enugu.
“Enquiries from other states reviews that Anambra collects N60, 000, Abia collects N80, 000 and Ebonyi collects N70, 000 per plot of land.
“The above mentioned neighbouring states price is just official price but can be negotiated depending on one’s bargaining strength, practitioners predicate based on what is giving to them at the national.
“So that is why they placed that of Enugu at N160, 000 minimum,” he said.
While contributing, the member representing Igbo-Etiti East Constituency, Mr Ezenta Ezeani, requested to know the mandate of the surveyor-general, their regulatory body and the protection policy domiciled in the office of the surveyor-general of the state.
While responding to the question, Ishiwu said that his mandate was to ensure that what surveyors did at the site was in conformity with the ethics of the profession which include the way they handled their surveying and instrument they used at work.
He said that his primary duty was to take care of the government surveys, supervise the survey department under the ministry of lands, executes public surveys for government and to ensure that they were done well.
He said that the price list was controlled by the NIS, noting that he did not see what prompted the increment.
In a closing remark, Onoh said that the committee would invite the Nigeria Institute of Surveyors and Association of Practicing Private Surveyors in Nigeria, Enugu State chapter to see how they would remedy the situation.
The lawmaker said that the Assembly members could not fold their arms and watch Enugu residents to suffer untold hardship.