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May 31, 2016

Real Estate Blues: Landlord and Tenant Romance by Akinyemi Ayinoluwa




Emeka Nwankwo is a legal practitioner with a viable law practice in Lagos. He is a fine gentleman with his head well screwed to his neck.  Temperate, unassuming, a charmer and a typical people-person. Little wonder, in his early 30s he has recorded huge milestones in his law career.

Emeka resides in a peaceful, elitist neighborhood in Lagos, Nigeria. Though of the eastern extraction, he enjoys a chummy relationship with his landlord, a yoruba man in his early fifties.

May 28, 2016

Music Saturdays - @falzthebahdguy



Falz the bahdguy, real name Folarin Falana is a Nigerian lawyer turned rapper and son of legal luminary, Femi Falana SAN. Falz left the practice of law to follow his dreams as an artist, he thrills every audience with his talent in music and comedy. Find him at @falzthebahdguy. Check out his videos, first one is titled "Ello Bae".

May 27, 2016

Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Act 2017

Credits - thenigerialawyer.com


This Act provides for the repeal of the Money Laundering (Prohibition) Act 2011 as amended in 2012 to make comprehensive provisions to prohibit the laundering of the criminal activities, expand the scope of money laundering offences, provide protection for employees of various institutions, bodies and professions who may discover money laundering, enhance customer due diligence, provide appropriate penalties and expand the scope of supervisory bodies whilst recognising the role of certain self - regulatory organisations " address the challenges faced In the implementation of a comprehensive ant - money laundering regime in Nigeria.

Nigerian Senate Introduces Bill to curb naughty professors

Photo Credit - Schoolnews.com.ng

If you are familiar with Nigerian Universities or you probably studied in one, you may be familiar with instances involving sexual harassment, where naughty professors take advantage of students and harass them into having sex in exchange for marks. It’s also both ways as some girls will rather give it up rather than study thereby going out of their way to get the attention of the lecturers, but a willing student who decides to play dirty with her professor is different from one who is forced into the relationship.

Infograph: Legal Rights of the Nigerian Child


Happy Children's Day


May 26, 2016

J.N. YISAPATI - “Incompetence” of Court Processes without the NBA Stamp/seal



Photo Credit - www.nigerianbar.com

It may perhaps be useful to herald this piece with a scenario that played out at the High court in Minna, Niger state;
 
Defendant/Applicant: Your lordship, we are challenging the competence of this suit and we summit that this court is robbed of jurisdiction. The NBA stamp/seal on the Writ of summons (an originating process) bear the year 2015 when the current year is 2016, in fact, we vehemently submit that the said process is without the NBA stamp/seal. It is now well settled that the failure to affix the NBA stamp/seal on any legal document, even Court processes, makes such document incompetent. We therefore urge this Honourable court to strike out this suit, also in line with O.5.r.2(1) of the Rules of this court. One cannot put something on nothing and expect it to stand. We are grateful.

May 25, 2016

Ronke Omorodion - Beware of Oral Contracts




Welcome back to the Chronicles of Becky (insert soundtrack lol)

Last time out, we learnt how a simple waiver clause can protect your business from unwarranted liabilities. In case you missed it kindly follow #LegalBusiness to get updated.

BeWise Digital Limited had only recently started engaging with some major international partners and Becky had come to realise that she needed a website to properly portray her corporate image to the world. She was scheduled to speak at an international conference in 6 weeks and needed her website to be up and running before then.

15 ways to get your desired business name approved for registration



Credit - new.cac.gov.ng

If you plan to use a general word when coining your business name, please don't forget the fact that as humans we sometimes think alike and someone else might have used the name. However there are many tricks to get the name you desire to be available to you even if it is a commonly used word. A client once told me he saw his desired name in a dream, but when we searched, the name was denied, apparently, someone else saw it in a dream before him.

The problem of name denial is real and research shows that many entrepreneurs get frustrated when their desired names are not available for registration. Some have been discouraged to proceed with registration while others cast suspicious looks at the Incorporation agent.  But according to Akin Mate, a Lagos based corporate lawyer, there may be a way out. The easiest way to get the name you desire is to be unique and creative, Akin Mate Said. Unique names will always beat the system.

How To Get Your Desired Name:

May 24, 2016

Busayo Adedeji: Corporate Immigration Practice In Nigeria








There are three classes of visas under which corporate/business visitors can visit Nigeria. These are:


  • ·        Business visa;

  • ·        Temporary Work Permit (TWP visa); and

  • ·        Subject to Regularization Visa (STR visa).

Nelson C.S Ogbuanya: Overview of the National Industrial Court's ADR Instrument & Rules 2015


Credit - www.ledapnigeria.org


Introduction:
The official inauguration of the National Industrial Court of Nigeria (NICN)’s Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Centre Instrument & Rules 2015 on 18th December 2015 marks a significant milestone towards the discharge of the mandate of the Court, as the specialized federal superior court of record with exclusive jurisdiction on industrial, employment and labour related disputes in Nigeria. The inauguration ceremony which attracted major stakeholders held at the Shehu Musa Yar’Adua Centre Abuja, under the distinguished chairmanship of the Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Hon, Justice Mahmud Mohammed, GCON.

May 22, 2016

Adenike Adetifa: Bail in Nigeria (3): A Matter Of Right or Not

Credit - eightballbail.com

“If a person accused of felony talk less of a capital offence, can hide under the canopy of Section 35 of the Constitution to escape lawful detention, then, a flood gate of escape routes to freedom is easily made available to suspected felons and capital offenders which will not augur well for the peace, tranquility and progress of society”. 
  • His Lordship IRIKEFE JSC in ECHEAZU V C.O.P. (1974) NMLR 308 PG.314

Adenike Adetifa: Bail in Nigeria (2): Presumption Of Innocence Until Proven Guilty

Credit - cortniwaltonbailbonds.com

There is no doubt and the law is trite as enunciated by Ba’Aba, JSC in Gwandu v. C.O.P. KEBBI STATE (2006) ALL FWLR PT. 294 P. 537-538 that trial courts should not delve into the substantive case at interlocutory stage because if the court is allowed to revisit the substantive issue at any stage of the trial, it will be tantamount to the Judge sitting on appeal on his earlier decision on the substantive matter there by outraging the sense of justice of an independent dispassionate observer sitting in court. 
  • His Lordship AGUBE JCA in ALI V. STATE (2012) 10 NWLR PT. 1309 P. 624 PARA D-E

Adenike Adetifa - Bail in Nigeria (1): Discretionary Power Of The Court, How Exercised

Credit - iuncuff.com 
Courts are recognized and renowned as the hallowed chambers of justice, where even-handed justice is meted out to all and sundry, without sentiment, emotion, favoritism or being unnecessarily embroiled in crass legalism. Additionally, constitutional and statutory provisions which pertained to presumption of innocence and liberty of citizens are meant to be applied and not treated as totem poles, left untouched in sanctified and sacred deification”.
  • His Lordship Oredola JCA in AHMED V. C.O.P., BAUCHI STATE (2012) 9 NWLR PT. 1304 P. 133 PARA A-B
Basically, Bail pending trial is a constitutional right enshrined under the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (As Amended) to every individual. Section 35 (1) of the Constitution provides that “ Every person shall be entitled to his personal liberty and no person shall be deprived of such liberty save in the following cases and in accordance with the procedure permitted by law…(quotation continues)”.

May 21, 2016

MUSIC SATURDAYS - Who is @kinggfefe


Who is @kinggfefe Find out

MUSIC SATURDAYS - Fefe via @kinggfefe


Fefe is a lawyer and awesome artists. search for her on all your social media outlets via @kinggfefe and jam her songs.


May 20, 2016

Lammy Review of Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) representation in the Criminal Justice System


In January 2016 the Prime Minister invited David Lammy MP to find out why official figures show that Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) groups appear to be over-represented at most stages of the criminal justice system, and what can be done about it.

This is an independent review. It aims to make sure that everyone is treated equally, whatever their ethnicity.

Faruq Abbas - How to avoid Disputes arising from the services of an Estate Agent


Credit - google.com

Introduction

It is not unusual for most adults and corporate bodies in Nigeria to have had a business dealing with an Estate Agent for the sale, purchase or lease of a property. In Nigeria, the fees/commission for most Estate Agents is usually 10% of the total proceeds of sale or purchase price or rental value of the property. 

Sign petition for UK to investigate flight of corrupt funds from Nigeria


The UK has served as a haven for stolen funds for corrupt Nigerian political officials and their associates since the early 60s. These funds are kept as pseudo assets, bank accounts & properties. In law, the receiver of stolen goods is as guilty as the thief. It is about time the UK does something.

Sign the petition here 

I'm just a tenant, why do I have to tidy the premises?





The weather had been very hot for several weeks and they all prayed and wished for rain to fall and dampen the grounds. So when the downpour started, everyone was excited and the relief could be felt in the air. And then the rains continued, and continued…

…and refused to stop. The winds also joined forces and blew ferociously. The joy residents felt began to turn into fear, afraid that God had decided to punish them with flood just as it happened in the days of Noah.

May 19, 2016

Abimbola Laoye- Petroleum Industry Bill (P.I.B), Movement For The Eradication Of Gas Flaring In Nigeria



 
Credit - www.guardian.ng
Nigeria is one of Africa’s top oil producers and largest holder of natural gas reserves with about 187 Trillion Cubic Feet (TCF) of proven gas reserves and 600 TCf of unproven gas reserves[1]. This translates to the fact that Nigeria possesses huge resources, sufficient to cover both domestic and international demand alike.  However Nigeria’s potential and ability to harness and exploit the use of gas in its energy sector is crippled many factors including (and not surprisingly) political bureaucracy.[2]

May 17, 2016

Detail Commercial Solicitors - Navigating the pitfalls of operating an IP Holding Company


Mauritius is all the rage. Due to the favourable tax regime in Mauritius, the country is seen as the gateway to Africa. Foreign companies often route their investments through Mauritius by setting up a Category 1 Global Business Company (GBL1) which has an effective tax rate of 3% and is able to take advantage of Mauritius’ extensive double taxation treaty (DTT) network, or a Category 2 Global Business Company (GBL2), which is treated as a non-resident of Mauritius and therefore exempt from tax in MauritiusMauritius is therefore an ideal jurisdiction for incorporating intellectual property (IP) holding companies.

Magnus Amudi: VAT on Imported Services –Vodacom Business Nig. Limited v. FIRS


Under the Nigerian Value Added Tax Act 2007 (the “Act”), “imported services” are liable to the imposition of value added tax (“VAT”) as they are not specifically listed under the tax-exempt items. The Act defined “Imported service” as service rendered in Nigeria by a non-resident person to a person inside Nigeria.

As a general rule, a foreign company which supplies goods and services in Nigeria without a physical presence in Nigeria is neither required to register for VAT with the Federal Inland Revenue Service nor charge/issue a VAT invoice.  This is because the foreign company cannot be said to be carrying on business in Nigeria, and has no physical presence in Nigeria. This position was supported by the Abuja Zone of the Tax Appeal Tribunal (established to decide tax disputes) (“TAT”) inGazprom Oil & Gas Ltd v. Federal Inland Revenue Service (“FIRS”).Consequently, the consumers of such goods and services in Nigeria were not subject to pay VAT.

May 16, 2016

Ronke Omorodion: Non-Disclosure Agreement- Importance Of…


Hello there my great minds! Our #LegalBusiness series continues
In our previous post, we saw how Joseph’s company Bionic Don Limited was slammed with a fine of N2 million for infringement of Becky’s company trademark.

Paying the fine from the lawsuit dug a hole in Joseph’s finances and he had to work extra hard to cover his losses.

Youth Inclusion: Dogara to Engage with 161 Nigerian University Students in Abuja



In an unprecedented move aimed at broadening the understanding of Nigerian students and setting the records straight for them to understand the  workings of the institution of the legislature and how it functions, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon Yakubu Dogara, will meet with 161 students from all 141 public and private universities across the country to interact with them.

Getting the clients and winning the pitch...a note for lawyers! by Abayomi Okubote


It does seem like a herculean task for many lawyers to attract the big clients and cash the fat cheques. Apart from the Rules of professional conduct in Nigeria, which forbids advertisement (of course the world has moved beyond those rigid rules), many lawyers are unwilling to “market” or perhaps have not realized that marketing and business development are part of being successful lawyers and are essential to operating a successful law firm. We need to realize that the competition in the legal industry is fierce - many large firms (within and outside Nigeria) are now developing robust and sophisticated marketing and client management strategies.

Interview With The Founder Of Urban Lawyers Tunde Okewale


Urban lawyers is a London based organisations that works with local communities, agencies and law students throughout the UK  It aims to make the law accessible and comprehensible for marginalised groups through provision of online resources and delivery of events and workshops.

It was founded by renowned barrister Tunde Okewale who has recently become a patron for Hackney Law Centre. I caught up with Tunde to find out more about his journey, achievements and why he founded Urban Lawyers.

Ivie Omoregie: Divorce Settlements in Nigeria and the Concept of Spousal Maintenance

Photocredit- here

In recent years we have seen an increasing number of marriage breakdowns. In Europe and America, this upward trend has increased periodically over the last 2 decades; with an average of 57% of all first marriages ending in divorce.

However, in Nigeria this is not the case. Due to a significant difference in cultural and social values, divorce is still somewhat of a new phenomenon. But it is definitely on the rise; some people argue that this may be due to globalisation watering down ancient traditions, with others arguing that it is due to a new breed of Nigerian entering into the marriage contract, resulting in parties not having a clear understanding as to what is expected of them.

Investigation, registration & perfection of Title to Land in Nigeria by Mary Akin-Ajayi

Photo Credit - en.urgazenergo.com


BEFORE YOU BUY THAT LAND/PROPERTY

What you must know prior to, during and after purchase:
For many, buying a piece of land or real property is all about finding a vendor willing to sell and meeting the price for the property. Many people fall into the mistake of dealing with vendors of properties in trust, assuming that the fact that they have known one another for donkey years or the fact that an agent has assured them of good title is sufficient to avoid future troubles with respect to the land or real property.

It is of paramount importance to take certain steps prior to the purchase of land, during the course of purchase and even after the purchase has been made for the sake of securing ones interest in the said property. A willing purchase as a matter of importance must investigate the title of the vendor to the said land and in some cases the track record of such vendor in order to forestall any future legal issues. 

May 15, 2016

Benefits of paying your tax


Nigeria as a country and indeed all socially responsible and law abiding individuals, groups, organizations and corporate citizens will derive valuable benefits from imbibing a culture of tax compliance. The benefits derivable include but are not limited to:

Tax Legislations & Tax Policy


Tax legislation is the act or process of enacting tax laws and the body of laws that provide for the levying of taxes and tax administration.

The following are the existing tax legislation in Nigeria, as at 2016:

May 13, 2016

Advertise Here


How much can Nigerian Pension Funds really spend on infrastructure? by Detail Commercial Solicitors


Introduction

Pension funds are a fast-growing and useful asset pool for funding infrastructure projects in Nigeria. The National Pension Commission (PENCOM) recently announced that the asset pool made up of contributor’s funds, and managed by Pension Fund Administrators (PFAs), is currently at N5.3 trillion (Vanguardngr.com, February 22, 2016). 

11 Things to know about the Employee Compensation Act by @LawPadi


NIGERIA’S EMPLOYEE COMPENSATION ACT

The Employee Compensation Act was an important piece of legislation passed in order to provide for employees who were injured, disabled, or died during the course of their employment. The Act replaced the Workmen’s Compensation Act.

Some of the key features of the law which Nigerians need to be aware of are:

1.     The Law was established in order to provide an open and fair system of guaranteed and adequate compensation for employees or their dependants for any death, injury, disease or disability arising out of or in the course of employment. 

May 12, 2016

10 Legal tips for Start-ups by Adedunmade Onibokun



It is no news, startups are springing up in Nigeria faster than we can say “Jack Robinson”. The entreprenual power, wealth and opportunities in Nigeria are so enormous, the sky is big enough for everyone to fly and that’s why international companies are breaking legs just to get a foot in.
Having a startup goes well beyond having an idea, implementing and executing your business plans and strategies with adequate legal and commercial advice is another step in making your business a success. I suggest you pay attention to the following legal tips as it may be what makes or breaks your business.

May 11, 2016

United Nations Convention against Corruption

Photo credits - www.integritynigeria.com 

In its resolution 55/61 of 4 December 2000, the General Assembly recognized that an effective international legal instrument against corruption, independent of the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime (resolution 55/25, annex I) was desirable and decided to establish an ad hoc committee for the negotiation of such an instrument in Vienna at the headquarters of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. The Convention approved by the Ad Hoc Committee was adopted by the General Assembly by resolution 58/4 of 31 October 2003.

Buhari’s keynote address at the Tackling Corruption Together Conference


Read his speech below:

Fellow Heads of State & Government, The Secretary-General of the Commonwealth, the Rt. Honourable Patricia Scotland, QC, Business Leaders, Representatives of Civil Society Organizations, Your Excellencies, Ladies and gentlemen.

1. I am delighted to be invited to this event to exchange views with you my fellow invited guests representing Governments, the Private Sector and Civil Society Organizations. I thank you Your Excellency, the Secretary-General of the Commonwealth, for asking me to speak at this gathering.

The Obembe’s Clog in the Wheels of Arbitration Law in Nigeria by Kayode Omosehin

Photo Credit - www.arcmediation.com 


Preliminary View

One of the few cases in which a controversial pronouncement has ever been made by the Nigerian courts arbitration-related disputes, the case of Obi Obembe v. Wemabod Estates Ltd. (1977) All NLR 130 takes the prize. It is relatively the oldest decided case on the right of a defendant to insist that a dispute in respect of an agreement containing arbitration clause must be referred to arbitration. In the Obembe case, no earlier Nigerian case was cited or relied upon. It appears to be the oldest judicial precedent on when a defendant can rightfully request that parties to a judicial proceedings be referred to arbitration in accordance with their agreement.

Downsizing and its latent implications by Aloaye David Gibiri


Companies seeking to effect organizational through the medium or process of downsizing may find that the means to such an end may be flawed, causing more harm than doing any good.

Downsizing is the process of reducing staff numbers and/or divisions of a company and has been a widespread change practice since the 1970s. Fortune 500 companies have been recorded to have cut back on their collective workforce by 1,040,466 in 2001 alone. Reasons for engaging in this change process range from restructuring, cost cutting or savings, selling of a business unit, increasing productivity or responding to external pressures such as recessions or economic down turns.

May 10, 2016

What Nigeria's Public Sector needs

Photo Credits - godrejproperties.com 
Corporate Governance is a big deal in the private sector today, stakeholder and shareholder interests are constantly at daggers drawn, accountability and transparency are now mandatory values in corporate institutions and effectiveness in managing organisational wealth is considered paramount. These procedures are of immense importance to the financial growth of institutions and boost economies in the long run. However, one vital part of national economies is being ignored in this drive for better corporate governance, which is the public sector.

SAY NO TO CORRUPTION


May 9, 2016

Registration of a Branch or Subsidiary of a foreign Company in Nigeria





Non-Nigerians and Foreign Companies are at liberty, and indeed encouraged to invest and participate in the operation of any enterprise or company in Nigeria. To invest in Nigeria, the promoters or investors must register a company in Nigeria. 

A foreign company may apply in accordance with Section 56 of the Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA) for exemption from incorporating a local subsidiary if such a foreign company belongs to one of the following categories:-

May 8, 2016

Infograph on Domestic Violence


May 6, 2016

Remedies available to Minority Shareholders for wrong done By the Majority/Controlling Shareholders


Written by Oluyemisi Dansu
Managing Partner at Argyle & Clover Attorneys at Law

It is rather easy for the rights of minority shareholders to be infringed upon however minority shareholders are afforded some protection under the Companies and Allied Matters Act (CAMA) to protect their rights/interests.
While it is trite in line with the provisions of Section 299 of CAMA[1], that where a wrong has been done in the course of a company's affairs to the company (by the majority or the alter ego of the company), only the company can sue to remedy the wrong. This is commonly known as the rule in Foss .v. Harbottle. There are some exceptions to this general principle provided for under Section 300 of CAMA. These exceptional instances are discussed hereafter.

May 5, 2016

Constitutional Roles of the House of Representatives


The House of Representatives is the second chamber in Nigeria’s bicameral legislature, the National Assembly. The National Assembly (NASS) is the nation's highest legislature, whose power to make laws is summarized in chapter one, section four of the 1999 Nigerian Constitution. 

Sections 47-49 of the 1999 Constitution state inter alia that "There shall be a National Assembly (NASS) for the federation which shall consist of two chambers: the Senate and the House of Representatives". 

Senate Constitutional Role



The Constitution has vested in the National Assembly the power to make laws for the peace, order and good governance of the Federation. The Assembly also has broad oversight functions and is therefore empowered to establish committees of its members to scrutinize bills and the conduct of government institutions and officials.

The Constitution confers exclusive powers to the Senate among them the power to scrutinize and confirm major appointments of the executive. It is, however, specific about the appointments to be confirmed. They are those of the Ministers, Special Advisers, Ambassadors, top Judicial Officers heading specified levels of courts, the Auditor-General of the Federation, and the Chairmen and Members of the vital National Commissions.

May 4, 2016

What is wrong with this photo?


WHAT DO YOU THINK IS WRONG HERE? LOL

House Seeks To Amend The Electoral Act, To Address Lacuna In Electoral Process


The House of Representatives has on Wednesday, May 4, 2016 referred to the Committee on political and Electoral matters, a consolidated Bill that seek to make provisions to address the lacuna in the event of the death of a candidate, any time before the conclusion of an election and to empower Election Tribunals and Courts to declare Candidates who score the second highest votes as winners of the elections. Other issues which the Bill seeks to address include to ensure that all political parties are gender sensitive and to eliminate all forms of discrimination.

A co-sponsor of the Bill, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila, while leading the debate on the general principles of the Bill stated that a key component of the Bill also wants to accommodate the use of Card Reader in the Electoral Laws as well as to increase the amount of money permitted as maximum election expenses to be incurred by Candidates standing for elections. In addition, nullification of elections by Tribunals or Court should be put in the right perspective, he said. Other sponsors of the Bill, Hon. Karimi Sunday, Edward Gyang Pwajok, Uzoma Nkem-Abonta, Olatoye Temitope Sugar and Raphael Nnanna Igbokwe took turns to adumbrate on the desirability or otherwise of the Bill as they appealed to the Members of the parliament to support their argument and prevent the recent electoral impasse in Kogi Sate Governorship election from happening elsewhere.

However, the Minority Leader, Hon. Leo Ogor had a different view regarding the use of Card Reader, he informed that the Card Reader was almost declared illegal in a recent ruling by the Supreme Court. He opined that the Card Reader inadvertently shuts out several eligible voters from performing their franchise, calling it a violation of the fundamental Human Rights of the people; he however suggested that the system of electronic voting be captured in the Electoral Act. 

In a related development, the representatives passed for second reading a Bill which seeks to alter the 3rd schedule of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 to provide for Electronic Voting and other related matters, standing in the name of Hon. Edward Gyang Pwajok.

Meanwhile, the House resumed the senatorial debate on Diversification of the Economy: real sector development during the plenary session where it played host to the Hon. Minister of Agriculture, Chief Audu Ogbe who delivered his brief where he advised that the way out of the current economic quagmire is to ride the lane of self-sufficiency and to focus on export goods like cocoa and palm oil. “We must begin to grow our own foods and wage an economic war against importation of excessive goods”, he emphasized.

He informed that the Ministry of Agriculture is doing well in rice and beans production, reviving the cocoa industry, establishing a new market for bananas and conducting nationwide survey on fertilizer. 

Chief Ogbe stated that the Ministry is tackling the issues of competition, importation and inability to access finance through policy direction, however, solicited support of the parliament if the challenges are to be surmounted. He further stressed that factors such as high and inaccessible financial interest rate for farmers, youth restiveness, land revenue and problems of Extension Services need to be addressed. “Nigeria has the highest ratio of extension workers to the tune of 1:10 in Africa”, he stated.

Responding to questions from the lawmakers, the Minister said that the way forward includes having a functioning Local Government system that will perhaps boost local production in the grassroots, and interest rate for agriculture should not be higher than 5%. He strongly advised against re-opening of the grazing routes across the country, citing waste of effort as reason if the routes would not lead to grasslands but farms. 

Credit - www.nass.gov.ng http://nass.gov.ng/news/item/249

Inforgraph on duties and obligations of Landlords & Tenants