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Planning and environmental issues

Planning

Which government authorities regulate planning and zoning for real estate development and use in your jurisdiction and what is the extent of their powers?

The following authorities regulate planning and zoning for real estate development and use in Nigeria:

  • the Department of Development Control;
  • the Department of Lands Administration;
  • the Ministry of Lands and Survey; and
  • the Development of Urban and Regional Planning.

The powers of these authorities are clearly stated under the different laws which established them.

What are the eligibility, procedural and documentary requirements to obtain planning permission?

To obtain planning permission, developers must provide:

  • a building plan or drawing;
  • details of the proposed purpose of the land use;
  • details of the area’s density;
  • an environmental impact assessment test report;
  • a soil test report; and
  • a valid title.

Can planning decisions be appealed? If so, what is the appeal procedure?

Planning decisions can be appealed through various procedures before the Urban and Regional Planning Tribunal.

What are the consequences of failure to comply with planning decisions or regulations?

The consequences of failure to comply with planning decisions or regulations include:

  • prosecution;
  • demolition of the structure; and
  • government revocation of the title.

What regime governs the protection and development of historic and cultural buildings?

UN conventions and domestic laws governs the protection and development of historic and cultural buildings, which are usually enforced by the Department of Museums and National Monuments.

Government expropriation

What regime applies to government expropriation of real estate?

Real estate is not generally subject to expropriation in Nigeria except where there is an overriding public interest or the real estate is a proceed of or connected to fraud or another crime. In such cases, the courts can issue an order as to the right of the investor or the government.

What is the required notice period for expropriation and how is compensation calculated?

Nigerian law does not provide a specific notice period, but the owner of the statutory right of occupancy must be duly served with notice of revocation. Failure to do so may result in the expropriation being successfully contested in court.

Expropriation is usually compensated by the provision of alternative land to the owner of the right that has been expropriated. Monetary compensation by the government is uncommon.

Environmental issues

What environmental certifications are required for the development of real estate and how are they obtained?

Developers must obtain the following certifications from the Department of Development Control:

  • building plan approval;
  • an environmental impact assessment test report; and
  • a soil test report.

These certifications are usually obtained by submitting an application to the relevant department and paying the official processing and approval fees.

What environmental disclosure obligations apply to real estate sales?

Details of the proposed purpose of the property’s use must be disclosed.

What rules and procedures govern environmental clean-up of property? Which parties are responsible for clean-up and what is the extent of their liability?

The rule of strict liability applies.

Are there any regulations or incentive schemes in place to promote energy efficiency and emissions reductions in buildings?

No.

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