Former Member of Parliament for North Dayi, George Loh, is asking the government to find better ways of solving Ghana’s housing problem and stop its concentration on the revision of the country’s rent law.
In his view, the revision of the rent law with a year’s advance payment of rent is not a better way to solve the issue of rent and housing among Ghanaians as the problem has to do with housing deficit.
“We are approaching this as if it is the panacea of the problem; it is nowhere near a solution in itself, when we have a housing deficit on the gargantuan scale” he stated on TV3 magazine morning show New Day on Monday.
The current Ghana rent law allows landlords to take six-month rent advance.
But the government has initiated moves to intervene and control the upper hand of landlords by proposing an amendment to the Act, Act 220 of 1963. Among many reforms in the act is a proposal for tenants to pay a year’s rent advance.
Works and Housing minister Samuel Atta Akyea has said the government is deliberating with stakeholders to peg rent advance at one year, indicating the passage of the revised act will give authority to the Rent Control to set the ceiling on rent charged by landlords.
But Mr. Loh who is also a legal practitioner said the government must resort to certain ingenious ways of improving the current housing situation in the country such as building affordable houses for people to apply for.
“We must find ingenious ways of improving the housing stock. I would prefer that government focuses on the provision of simple basic houses for workers and also all Ghanaians, sometimes these things work because for instance in the US, the houses exists and the individual just needs to apply” he said.
According the MP, requirement of a high advance payment is one reason for increased social vices in this country since the salaries of most workers are not so encouraging.
“Some high ranking workers pay are not as flamboyant as we think and hence if asked to pay a 2 to 3-year advance rent… it is almost like killing them. So many vices are as a result of this because people have to find money to pay rent and the fact that they have to house their families” he noted.
He however, urged government to research and adopt innovative ways of creating housing for Ghanaians.
By Portia Gafah|3news.com|Ghana