Former President John Mahama is asking government and property owners to come to some agreement to give respite to tenants and put a freeze on evictions as part of measures to mitigate the hardship on Ghanaians.
He said the move will help the country in the lockdown period to curb the spread of the coronavirus
Mahama said: “On Thursday, I spent the afternoon visiting one of the communities on the outskirts of Accra to present food items to some households.
“From my interactions with the people, one that struck me most was the concern of a young woman that her landlord is demanding the rent for February and March or she faces [eviction].
“She’s been home for a while due to the lockdown and cannot raise the funds to pay. Rent, as we have learned from other countries, is one of the key areas government intervention is required in mitigating the impact of COVID-19”, the flag bearer of the National Democratic Congress said.
Taking cognizance of the fact that: “In Ghana, properties are privately-owned and rent is paid for several years in advance”, Mr. Mahama said: “The government and property owners would have to devise a scheme to come to the aid of tenants who are unable to pay their rent”.
In his view, “A moratorium on evictions, as a first step, will be helpful to many who have lost their daily income as a result of the lockdown”.
In return, he proposed: “I believe the government can compensate landlords and landladies for any income lost through tax reliefs, exemptions among others”.