An unprecedented scale of valuation jobs may have opened up for estate surveyors, after months of uncertainty that pervaded the property market, leading to slowing down of transactions and cut in the rental values in some highbrow areas of the country.
In this latest move, the Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers (NIESV) is attempting to edge out quacks and standardise the valuation process in order to ensure that the outcome of valuation for compensation guarantees the sustainability of the Nigerian environment.
NIESV president, Dr. Bolarinde Patunola-Ajayi told The Guardian that the institution has received the backing of the National Oil Spill Detection and Response Agency (NOSDRA), and their cooperation would ensure its members have a positive impact in the oil and gas sector, especially valuation of oil spillage.
Specifically, NIESV is also lobbying to ensure that its members are engaged during the Ogoni clean up exercise and victims get their due benefits; and valuation is carried out by estate surveyors on wetlands following international approved standards.
By virtue of Decree No. 24 of 1975 (now Cap E13, Laws of Federation of Nigeria 2004), the Estate Surveyors and Valuers (Appraisers) are the sole professionals statutorily recognized in Nigeria to provide advice on the value of pecuniary interests in land or landed property for various purposes including compensation arising from oil spillage.
He disclosed that the estate surveyors and valuers are working with the agency to harmonize models and methodology for compensation valuation of oil spill sites. According to him, the NIESV has set up a committee to come up with institutional perspective and official position on the appropriate methodology to compensation valuation for oil spillage, which would be approved by the national body before being forwarded to the agency.
Dr. Patunola-Ajayi said that the estate surveyors are the professional body enabled by the extant laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria to act in all matters of asset/property valuation in the country and that its member are well trained, equipped and licensed to offer valuation services for all purpose including mortgage, sales and purchase, merger, asset sharing, probate, taxation, accounting standards, insurance, compensation, rental and so on.
Meanwhile, Patunola-Ajayi during a meeting with the NOSDRA Director General in Abuja spoke extensively on the relevance of the Estate Surveying and Valuation practice to the agency.
He requested for the establishment of a Directorate of Assessment in the agency with a registered estate surveyor and valuer as a head and the need to amend the NOSDRA Act to capture all aspects of compensation for damages, by setting up of a joint committee to work out schedules of rates for the compensation of economic trees, crops and other environmental losses resulting from oil spill pollution.
According to him, the grey areas in the NOSDRA Act that needs Amendment includes; that the agency should have as part of its functions, the right to engage estate surveyors and valuers in executing works in the management of pollution and polluted environment in Nigeria; that estate surveyors and valuers should be included as members of proposed Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund (Section 5); and that the use of the term “Claim or Independent Adjusters” in Section 10(vii) should be amended to read “Estate Surveyors and Valuers.”
The Director General, represented by the Director Planning, Policy Analysis and Research, Mr. O.J. Abe, in responds to the presentation of the NIESV president, commends the Institution on their visit stating that both NIESV and NOSDRA has a lot to share and that they have hitherto advocated the need to collaborate and adopt a standard format for compensation to avoid disparities.he however promised that NOSDRA will look into every issues mentioned and ensure that they are implemented.