The Independent Commission on Corrupt Practices and Other Related Offenses (ICPC) has disclosed that corrupt individuals are using real estate to launder illicit funds.
ICPC President Bolaji Owasanoye revealed this Thursday in a remark to the House of Representatives ad hoc committee investigating the activities of real estate developers in the Federal Capital Territory, FCT.
A Daily Trust report quoted the ICPC chairman as saying that the commission had carried out a study between 2010 and 2011 that revealed acute practices in the sector, including massive corruption and the injection of illicit funds.
Mr Owasanoye alleged that real estate developers have made a habit of selling land allocated for mass housing to the highest bidders on an ad hoc basis.
The ICPC president further revealed that where the houses are being built, they are said to have been sold to the rich.
He added that during its investigations and prosecutions, the commission recovered 241 houses and 60 buildings from corrupt public officials.
For his part, the chairman of the EFCC’s Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, Mohammed Bawa, who was represented by a director of the agency, Daniel Esei, said that the developers were not following the laws in force. which aggravated the acute practices of the sector.
According to him, developers are breaking the laws by allowing third parties to make payments or buy homes, to the detriment of real subscribers.
He also revealed that there is a need for stricter laws to allow the application of penalties on developers who go against the law.
Also speaking, the president of the Association of Real Estate Developers of Nigeria, REDAN, Aliyu O. Wamakko, said that although what the ICPC claimed to be happening, the developers involved were not members of the association.
He said REDAN members follow established rules in their operations.
He called on the public to be wary of unscrupulous developers who seek to tarnish the integrity of true association members.