Rent Control calls for more offices in Brong Ahafo

Mr Frank Opare Adu, Brong-Ahafo Regional Head of Rent Control Department, has appealed to government to establish more offices in the Region to facilitate the expeditious settlement of rent cases.

He said the Region had only two offices in Sunyani and Nkoranza thus the establishment of more offices would be most helpful to tenants as for some time the Landlords and Landladies Associations in the Municipalities and Districts had been handling rent cases.

Mr Adu, speaking to the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in Sunyani on Wednesday, said for such associations to handle rent cases, certain levels of bias were created against the tenants.

He said from January to September 2012, the Brong Ahafo Regional office received 387 cases, 287 of which had been settled with 82 pending while 18 were withdrawn by parties.

Mr Adu said there were even more unresolved rent cases in the Region than what the office received because of problems of proximity by prospective clients whilst some tenants, landlords and landladies either did not know the existence of the office or its location.

The Brong Ahafo Regional Head argued that all rent and tenancy cases must make reference to the Rent Act 1963 (Act 220) which was guided by the Rent Regulation of 1964, Legislative Instrument (LI) 369 but the landlords and landladies associations operated outside the Act.

He said “The Rent Act is tenant-friendly” to avoid the abuse of the rights of tenants, therefore, all rent cases must be settled with reference to it, without that, any intervention of landlords and landladies associations in rent and tenancy disputes was “illegal”.

Mr Adu said adjudication in tenancy and rent cases by the associations amounted to conflict of interest and the probability that the interest of tenants would suffer was greater.

He said efforts were being made to secure office accommodation at Techiman to expand operations of the department to create easy access for their services by the people in the Region.

Mr Adu said the office had been participating in awareness creation programmes on some radio stations in the Sunyani Municipality but there was the need for more public education about the responsibilities of landlords, landladies and tenants to stem the rising tide of tenancy and rent problems in the society.

He said the “Recovery of possession due to rent arrears”, “Recovery of possession due to nuisance, personal or family use” were some of the complaints the office has been receiving from landlords and landladies.

Meanwhile the Regional office has since January 2009 to September 2012 received 1,332 cases.

They were made up of 251 for 2009, 312 in 2010, 382 for 2011 and 387 in 2012.

Source: GNA

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