In what real estate operators and business owners have described as a major turnaround for ease of doing business in the state, the Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki has slashed to a minimum of N50,000 the cost for processing Certificate of Occupancy (C-of-O), assuring a 30-day turnaround for processing land titles.
Obaseki, who disclosed this during an inspection of ongoing work at the Edo Geographic Information Service (EDOGIS) office in Benin City, said that the development is made possible as a result of the deployment of Geographic Information Service (GIS) technology by the state government in processing land titles.
According to him, “We are drastically reducing the cost of obtaining C-of-O. The minimum will be N50, 000. That means that we have come down drastically from the current rate of about N300,000 to slightly about N50, 000.”
He explained, “Our hope is that Edo will be one of the foremost states in Nigeria where you can come in, buy land and within 30 days, you have all the documents and titles to the land. If you want to sell, we will ensure that granting of approvals such as building approvals follow the same speed.
“What that will do is that investors will find out that it is much easier to do business in Edo because of the speed at which we can register titles and the speed at which people can obtain licences.
” Obaseki said the state government would not relent in providing a conducive working environment for workers in the state, adding, “The idea is to improve the work experience of public officers and public servants. Their offices should be more comfortable than their homes so that they can spend more time at work and be more productive.”
He urged staff of the agency to imbibe the culture of maintaining facilities, noting that “maintenance is key to keeping the standard.”
The Managing Director, EDOGIS, Arch. Frank Evbuomwan explained that titles for land, C-of-O, governor’s consent, mortgage consent, among others, are processed at the new office site.
“Very soon, we will start the process of recertifying C-of-O and issuing of new C-of-O. The processes here are automated,” he added.