Residents of Port Harcourt and environs have reacted to the constantly increasing house rents which they said requires intervention from the government.
The residents whose reactions follow the recent position of the state government on allowing issues about rent to be decided by the market forces of demand and supply, urged the state government not to abandon the rent matter to market forces, as the prevailing circumstances will give room for Landlords to exploit tenants.
Speaking on the matter, one of the residents in Obio/Akpor area, Mr Collins Ogbandah explained that the time is not ripe for the market forces to determine how rent should be settled in Port Harcourt, pointing out that Port Harcourt is the only state capital where rents is high.
Mr Ogbonda also explained that there is shortage of homes in Port Harcourt, as compared to the rising population that is occasioned by influx of business and multinational operators. He said that the state government on their part have not taken housing development very seriously.
On his part, Mr Bright Igodo, who resides within the mile three – UST axis of Port Harcourt posited that many Rivers State indigenes, especially those in the public service are tenants, and that over the years, government has not taken the challenge of providing specific targeted homes for its citizens, adding that this has added to the wide gap in housing demand.
Bright stated “until government embarks on the policy of developing specific number of housing units every year within the city and environs, the issue of leaving rents to market forces will end up allowing Landlords to extort and exploit tenants.
It would be recalled that the Rivers State Governor, Rt. Hon. Chibuike Amaechi in his recent interaction with Journalist in Port Harcourt said that issue of house rent should be left to the market forces.