The state government of Lagos has said that the Lagos State Parking Authority is empowered by law regarding the collection of parking fees by the state government.
LASPA had stated in a letter to a company that it had charged the company N290,000 for the parking space outside the company premises.
A senior Nigerian lawyer, Femi Falana, on Sunday described the policy as illegal and urged the state government to immediately withdraw it.
“The Government of Lagos State and all other authorities, as well as other persons, are bound by the valid and lasting judgment of the Court of Appeal regarding the exclusive competence of local governments to regulate and collect parking fees in Lagos State.
“To that extent, the alleged parking charge set by the Lagos State Parking Authority cannot be justified under Article 7 of the Constitution. It must be withdrawn without delay,” he said.
However, responding to Falana’s comments, the senior special assistant to the Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice, Adebayo Haroun, noted on Tuesday that the local government development areas and the local council have assigned their powers to the state to pay compensation. collect. .
The statement read: “The attention of the Lagos State Parking Authority has been drawn to a statement in favor of Mr Femi Falana (SAN) regarding the agency’s authority to collect parking fees related to parking lots in Lagos State.
“The Lagos State Parking Authority Law, 2018 authorizes the LG and LCDAs in Lagos State to assign their powers related to parking fee collection to the state government. Accordingly, the Lagos State LGAs and LCDAs have jointly assigned their powers to the state government to collect parking fees in Lagos State.
“In a similar circumstance where the Court of Appeal was requested to interpret Section 7 and Fourth Schedule of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as amended) in relation to the Land Use Charge Law of Lagos State, the Court of Appeal in Ola Animashaun Harimot Oluwabukola v. Attorney General of the State of Lagos and 5 Ors on Appeal No. CA/L/1046, delivered on 19 November 2018, worded as follows:
“The intent of Section 1(3) of the Lagos State Land Use Act is clearly not to remove the function constitutionally bestowed upon the local government, but to give the local government powers to establish a contractual relationship between it and the state on the issue of tax collection which is clearly the responsibility of the local government without violating any law or constitutional provision.
“The Constitution recognizes that anyone who has power can exercise that power through other persons or institutions. For example, the Attorney General can exercise his powers through other persons.
“It is therefore constitutional for the state government and, by extension, the Lagos State Parking Authority to claim and collect fees related to parking in Lagos State.”