LAWS OF NASARAWA STATE OF NIGERIA
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RENT CONTROL AND RECOVERY OF PREMISES LAW
ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS
A LAW FOR RENT CONTROL AND RECOVERY OF PREMISES
BE IT ENACTED by the Nasarawa State House of Assembly and by the authority of same as follows:
Title and commencement
(2) The Government may from time to time by order in a gazette classify or vary the classification of types of residential accommodation, zone the area of the State and fix the standard and maximum rents for such accommodation for the purposes of this Law.
(2) Each payment of rent shall be entered in the rent book and each entry shall be signed by the landlord and the tenant.
(3) Any landlord who fails to comply with the provisions of Subsections (1) and (2) of this Section shall be guilty of an offence and shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding Ten Thousand Naira (N10,000.00).
District Courts to have jurisdiction
Jurisdiction of Court
(a) Any dispute between a landlord and a tenant in relating to the amount of rent payable in respect of any accommodation which this Law relates whereby any special circumstances relative to the accommodation it is claimed by a landlord or a tenant that an increased or reduced rent is payable.
(b) Any other dispute between a landlord and a tenant relating to the payment of any rent under the provisions of this Law.
(2) Until any regulations are made regulating the practice and procedure of the court and forms to be used therein, the rules of the court regulating the practice and procedure of a District Court and forms applicable their shall mutatis mutandis apply to and be used by the court.
(3) A landlord may apply to the court for the recovery of premises for a genuine cause. A genuine cause shall include:
(a) Nonpayment of the appropriate rent by a tenant.
(b) Misuse of the premises by a tenant.
(c) A genuine desire by a landlord to carry out repairs on his premises; and
(d) Any other reasons that the court considers reasonable having regard to the surrounding circumstances.
Power of the Court
(a) To summon any person to appear before it either as a party or as a witness in any proceedings pending before it.
(b) To require any interested party or witness to produce any document which it considers relevant.
(c) To administer an oath to any person testifying before it.
(d) To make any interlocutory or final decision as the justice of the pending case may require.
(e) To order any person to be arrested and charged for contempt.
(2) Any person charged with contempt of the court shall be liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding of N10,000 or to a term of imprisonment not exceeding two months or to both.
Restriction on contracting out
(a) Purports to preclude the tenant from exercising any right conferred upon him by law; or
(b) Provides for the termination or the surrender of the tenancy in the event of his exercising such a right or for the imposition of any penalty or disability on the tenant in that event.
Security of Tenancy
Representation of parties
(b) A legal practitioner
(c) Any other person of his choice provided that person has the power of attorney.
(2) In respect of any matter before the court the Government may be represented by:
(a) A Law Officer; or
(b) Any other person authorized in that behalf by or on behalf of the Attorney General.
Length of time
(a) In the case of tenancy at will or a weekly tenancy, a week’s notice.
(b) In the case of a monthly tenancy, a month’s notice.
(c) In the case of a quarterly tenancy, a quarter’s notice.
(d) In the case of a yearly notice, six months notice.
Provided all notices to quit premises shall be routed through and endorsed by the District court.
(2) The nature of a tenancy shall in absence of any evidence to the contrary be determined by reference to the time when the rent is paid or demanded.
(3) The tenancy shall determine where a tenant is in arrears of rent for a period of three (3) months after the commencement of this Law, and the court shall on application of the landlord make an order of possession and arrears of rent.
Landlord may claim for mense profits
Claims of arrears of rents and mense profits
Improvements on accommodation by tenant
Payments into court
Sub-tenants deemed to be tenants of the landlord
(2) An appeal under this section shall not preclude the court from making any appropriate order.
Courts to conform to the provisions of the Law
Distress Cap 123
19 (1) A landlord shall not exercise the power of distress for rent except in execution of the judgment of a court and in accordance with the Sheriffs and Civil Process Law, but courts on being satisfied that a tenant has defaulted in paying:
(a) The standard rent fixed by the court.
(b) An agreed rent that is lower than the standard rent, it may be ordered that the tenant’s property be detained until such payment is made.
(2) Notwithstanding the provisions of Section 11 (1) above, if the premises is locked up by a tenant for a period of six(6) months, the landlord should apply to the court for possession whereupon the premises shall be force opened by the court and the property therein detained by the court and the landlord be let into possession.
(3) Section 19, 20, 21, 22 and 27 of the Sheriffs and Civil Process Law shall apply in relation to distress made under this Section as they do in relation to attachment in execution under process of the court.
Offence and Penalties
(2) Any person who:
(a) Forcibly ejects or attempts to eject a tenant.
(b) Harasses or annoys a tenant by words or actions.
(c) Does any act or thing whatsoever calculated or likely to stultify the provisions of this Law, shall be guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding Ten Thousand Naira (N10,000) or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three(3) months or to both such fine and imprisonment.
(3) Any tenant who harasses or annoys a landlord shall be guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding Ten Thousand Naira (N10,000) or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three(3) months or to both such fine and imprisonment.
(a) Regulating the procedure on applications to and hearing by the court and the fixing of fees for the filing service and hearing of applications.
(b) Permitting a tenant or sub-tenant whose landlord or sub-landlord refuses to accept any rent tendered by him, to pay the same to the court and for regulating payment due to the landlord or sub-landlord or any sum so paid, the hearing and determination of applications in respect of payments.
(c) Prescribing forms to be used for the process and procedure of the court.
(d) Prescribing the forms and records to be used or to be kept by the court or as the record of payment under any tenancy agreement; and
(e) Generally for matters coming before the court.
“Agent” means any person usually employed by the landlord in the letting of premises or in the collection of the rent thereof or specially authorized to act in a particular manner by writing under the hand of the landlord in relation to the premises.
“Attorney General” means the Attorney General of the State.
“High Court” means the High Court of Nasarawa State.
“Landlord” in relation to any premises means the person entitled to immediate reversion of the premises or if the property therein is held in joint tenancy in common, any of the persons entitled to the immediate reversion and includes:
(a) The attorneys or agent of any landlord; or
(b) Any person receiving (where in his own right or as an attorney or agent) any rent from any person for the occupation of any accommodation in respect of which he claims a right to receive same.
“Functions” includes powers and duties.
“Mense Profits” means the rents and profits which a tenant holds over as a trespasser which might have been given during his occupation of the premises and which he is liable to pay as compensation to the person entitled to possession.
“Governor” means the Governor of Nasarawa State of Nigeria.
“Premises” includes a house or building or any part thereof together with its gardens or other appurtenances.
“Prescribed” means prescribed by this law or regulations and orders made thereunder.
“Rent” includes any money or monies worth whether in the form of crops, labour or otherwise paid or given as the case may be, in consideration of which a landlord has let a premises to a tenant.
“State” means Nasarawa State of Nigeria.
“Tenant” includes a sub-tenant or any person occupying premises whether on payment of rent or otherwise but does not include a person occupying a premises under a bonafide claim of rights as the owner of the premises.
“The Court” means a District Court sitting to entertain matters under this Law.
“Temporary Building” means any building other than a permanent building.
This printed impression has been carefully compared by me with the Bill, which has been passed by the Nasarawa State House of Assembly and is found by me to be true and correct copy of the Bill.
Clerk of the House
Nasarawa State House of Assembly
I ASSENTED THIS ……………. DAY OF ……………………., 2002
ALHAJI ABDULLAHI ADAMU
Nasarawa State of Nigeria