The Public Relations Officer of the Rent Control Department, Emmanuel Kporsu, has disclosed that the new Rent Bill when passed into law, will make it mandatory for landlords to report suspicious characters who have rented their facilities.
He revealed that to help fight terrorism and other serious offences, the new bill will require landlords and property owners to report such characters.
Speaking on Nyankontpn Mu Nsem on Rainbow Radio 87.5Fm, the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) (Act 762) forbids people from engaging in terrorist acts, including kidnapping and bombing, among others.
The law he mentioned has been incorporated into the new rent bill, requiring landlords to conduct thorough investigations of potential tenants before renting out their property to them.
“In the past, we have seen several cases of young girls being kidnapped in Takoradi and Koforidua.” These are acts of terrorism, and our laws ban you from engaging in them. As a result, the new bill will oblige landlords to do background checks on tenants before renting out to them.
The government recently introduced the See Something, Say Something initiative, which encouraged Ghanaians to report suspected characters to security officials so that they might be examined. It is your job as a landlord, and indeed every Ghanaian, to disclose such suspicions to the police so that they can investigate the person. When you report such occurrences, they will also require that such renters be removed from the property, investigated, prosecuted, and, if necessary, imprisoned.”
The PRO emphasized that every Ghanaian must report any suspicious activity to prevent any potential criminal activities.
The Cabinet approved the draft Rent Bill, 2022, after extensive discussions, at its last meeting on October 27th, 2022.
It was also recommended for the consideration of Parliament.
The general public has been asked to take particular interest in these engagements to ensure the passage of the Bill into law.
They are encouraged to send their views and expectations to their Members of Parliament for the House to consider for its passage into law.
The new bill was introduced because the existing Rent Act, 1963(Act 220) of 1963 and the Rent Control Law 1986 (PNDC Law138) had outlived their relevance.
The government has deemed the old law outdated due to population growth, urbanization, housing availability, rental rates, housing redistribution, and eviction controls, among other challenges affecting the housing sector.
The Bill is expected to remove inherent constraints and offer incentives, which would stimulate private-sector investment in the rental-housing sector.