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ESVARBON tribunal begins trial of valuers for professional misconduct

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The Disciplinary Tribunal of the Estate Surveyors and Valuers Registration Board of Nigeria (ESVARBON) has begun the prosecution of some estate valuers accused of professional misconduct.

The tribunal, sitting in Lagos, is hearing several cases brought before it by the Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyors and Valuers (NIESV) and other members of the body.

In one of the cases brought before it, NIESV vs ESV Toyin Ilori, the defendant was accused of colluding with a non-registered company to secure and execute compensation/valuation job.

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Ilori pleaded not guilty to the charge. The defence counsel, however, pleaded for more time to study the charge as it was recently amended by the prosecuting counsel.

The case was adjourned to September 3, 2020.

In another case, NIESV vs ESV Paschal Chinyelu, the defendant was accused of posting abusive contents on the Whatsapp platform of the NIESV Abuja chapter and refused to remove it even after the executives of the body had reached out to him.

When asked to plead his case, the defendant claimed not to remember anything as he had an accident in January 2018, which affected his memory.

In its ruling on the case, Chairman of the ESVARBON Disciplinary Tribunal, Sir Nweke O. Umezuruike, PPNIVS, noted that while the defendant had claimed not to remember anything concerning the allegation, including his response to the query issued in July 2018 as he claimed loss of memory, the tribunal came to the conclusion that the health condition of Paschal Chinyelu appears to be acute loss of memory, which makes him not to be in a position to practise the profession of estate surveyors and valuers and hereby directs that his name be struck off the register on all the instruments of registration recovered from him dated this day of July 28, 2020,” the ruling read.

Meanwhile, commenting on the legal backing for the tribunal, the Registrar, ESVARBON, Ifeanyi Uzonwanne, stated that the law establishing the board provided for it to have a disciplinary tribunal, saying: “In the area of enforcement of discipline, it is no longer going to be business as usual. The board may have waited for cases of professional misconduct to be reported to it without using the powers conferred on it by Section 13 of the Act setting it up. That section charges the tribunal with the duty of considering and determining any case referred to it by the investigating panel and any other case of which the tribunal has cognisance.”

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