The Oyo State Governor ‘Seyi Makinde has commenced the payment of Land Use Charge by paying bills on his private properties, urging property owners in the state to follow suit.
The governor, who spoke after the 11th Executive Council meeting in Ibadan, maintained that the payment of the charge would help the government to generate additional revenues to develop the state.
A statement by the Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, said the council also granted approvals for the commencement of the Oyo State Residents’ Registration Programme.
The state’s Commissioner for Finance, Akinola Ojo, while making clarifications on the Land Use Charge, maintained that the charge is not a new tax, adding that it is “to ensure that Oyo State has the revenues required to carry out projects and uplift people from poverty to prosperity.
Ojo said that the state government had embarked on data capturing and enumeration of properties. He said the charge, which would be paid yearly, has been designed in such a way that the value of properties would determine the amount to be paid.
He added that the payment could be made over a period of time, with incentives for early payment and penalties for defaulting, saying, “the governor flagged off the payment of the Land Use charge, which was one of his cardinal electioneering promises.’
“He made it known that throughout the time he has been living in Oyo State, he has never received a bill for Land Use Charge. And what we have done in this administration is to enumerate all the properties in Oyo State and all the properties in the state now have a unique I.D and we have also delivered bills to every property in the state.
Ojo added, “The process is easy and quick. Anybody who has a smartphone can use it to take a picture of the QR code on the top right corner of the Bill. With that, you get a quick populated screen where you just need to insert some fields, capture some essential details, which is your name, email address, contact phone number and follow the prompt. And at your convenience, you can pay your land use charge bill as long as you have an ATM card and a smart phone. That is the easiest way of paying your land use charge bill.
“You can also go to the Ministry of Lands, where there is a dedicated office where you can pay the bill and get the receipt. We encourage every resident of Oyo State to embrace this lofty idea and ensure that we find a way to revolutionise this state.”
Speaking on the approval for the commencement of residents’ registration programme, the Special Assistant on ICT, Akande, explained that as a government that believes in using data, science and logic to drive development, the state government is embarking on the residents’ registration programme to develop a database that will enable it to plan better for the development and security of the state.
He noted that the state government has embarked on similar exercises for farmers, government workers and other sectors and that the results have been helpful in planning and executing different policies, adding that the enumeration and registration of residents would be an ongoing exercise.