Olufemi Atoyebi, Ibadan
The immediate past President of the Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers, Dr. Joshua Patunola-Ajayi, has warned against patronising people he described as quacks, who defraud innocent people in the real estate business.
He spoke in Ibadan during the 48th Annual Conference of the institution, which ended on Saturday and during which Patunola-Ajayi completed his term of office.
According to him, there is a huge difference between real estate professionals and estate agents on the street, while expressing sadness that despite the existence of the law guiding the practice of real estate, many people still boldly go against the law.
He said, “Many people do not know the difference between our members and estate agents on the street. Many people are doing estate agency just to survive but our own business is practised by trained individuals who are certified by the body.
“Despite the law that specifies who should practice the profession, we still have many people going against the law. Eradicating quacks in real estate is a big fight that the government must address to protect the industry and help economic development. There is a code of ethics in the profession that protects tenants and ordinary people from being defrauded. I urge people to patronise professionals in the industry to guard against being defrauded.”
While highlighting the impact of the annual conference on the economy and ordinary people, Patunola-Ajayi stated that members were provided with an avenue to develop their capacities, which would in turn benefit the nation’s economy.
He said, “The annual national conference was an opportunity to give intensive lectures to members on how to improve on their work. It was also an avenue to network and enable our members to update their skills and meet the global best practices in the profession.
“Among the issues addressed were potential of the real estate sector as a veritable tool for economic development and ethical concerns in infrastructural development. When we come together in a conference, we have in our hearts what positive impact we will have on the people.”
The new NIESV President, Mr. Roland Abonta, said the conference was held to address how Nigeria could take advantage of the investment opportunities in the sector.