House of Assembly Moves to Curb Excessive Charges by Estate Agents and Filling Stations

The Ekiti State House of Assembly has passed a resolution to protect the people of the state from excessive charges imposed by estate agents and filling station operators.

The resolution, which was moved by the Majority Leader, Hon. Tolulope Ige (Ekiti South-West Constituency II, urged the state government to raise a task force to monitor and regulate the activities of estate agents who demanded exorbitant fees from prospective property buyers and renters

The resolution also called for a crackdown on fraudulent Point of Sale (POS) charges and fuel pump manipulation by filling station owners and managers, describing the situation as unacceptable and exploitative.

The legislators said they were moved by the complaints they received from the people of the state who had been subjected to further hardship by the unscrupulous practices of some estate agents and fuel station operators.

Hon Ige, in his lead debate, said the House would not fold its arm and allow the people of the state to be cheated by some businessmen who had no regard for the welfare of their customers.

Hon Temitope Longe (Oye Constituency 1), who seconded the motion, said some fuel stations rejected cash transfers from their customers, but direct them to nearby POS operators who charged excessive fees for their services.

He said the Assembly had summoned fuel marketers to a meeting where they expressed their displeasure and disapproval of the alleged exploitation of buyers of petroleum products, especially petrol.

Hon Tunde Idowu (Ikere Constituency 2) suggested that the relevant committee of the House should look at the existing laws and amend them if necessary to address the anomaly.

He also advised that unregistered estate agents should be differentiated from the registered ones for proper regulation and enforcement.

Hon Tunde Oke (Ikere Constituency 1) supported the motion and condemned what he called the extortionist spirit in all spheres of business in the state.

He said a vibrant Consumer Protection Agency was needed to control the prices of goods and services.

The Speaker, Rt. Hon. Adeoye Aribasoye, commended the mover, the seconder and all members who contributed to the debate, describing their nature as altruistic.
He said: “There should be a task force by a relevant agency of government to move into filling stations because we cannot allow such extortions to continue. The Task Force should begin to move round the stations and close down those found carrying out such fraudulent practices. The Task Force should regulate compliance, enough if extortion of our people.

“The unregistered estate agents are the ones creating problems for our people. The government should see to how to regulate them, there should be a Task Force to go after unregistered estate agents.

“The Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment and the State Internal Revenue Service should see to the issue of unregistered estate agents. All estate agents must be registered and their activities regulated.”

After passing the resolution, the House adjourned sine die. The motion for adjournment was moved by Hon. Ige and seconded by Hon. Ayodeji Adegbite (Ado Constituency 1).