Governor, Alhaji Abdulfatah Ahmed
By Hammed Shittu
The Kwara State House of Assembly has ordered the state governor, Alhaji Abdulfatah Ahmed, to repeal the Urbanisation Land Law 2009 in the state in line with the demand of the people of the state.
A socio-cultural organisation, the llorin Emirate Descendants Progressive Union (IEDPU), had last Friday during a public hearing organised by the Assembly on the state’s land policy demanded the abolition of the policy.
IEDPU in the paper presented on its behalf by a legal practitioner and member of the Union, Alhaji Yahaya Kale Saadu, noted that the abolition of the Land Use Act would check against indiscriminate acquisition of lands by government.
Fielding questions from journalists in Ilorin, at the weekend, the Speaker of the Assembly, Alhaji Razaq Atunwa, said the recommendation became necessary following the presentations of the various stakeholders during the last public hearing held on the law, which was popularly known as Legal Notice of 2009.
He noted that all those involved in the hearing concluded there was no time the state government sold any land either at the Eid-praying ground or the Emir’s palace.
Atunwa said the lawmakers also asked the governor to pay attention to some of the critical issues that were the source of complaints by the public.
“Today we examined the report of the public hearing on the Legal Notice of 2009. The report again demonstrates that none of the rumours about the sale of land at the eid praying ground or elsewhere was true. The report shed light on the law and noted there might have been unintended consequences in its application,” he said.
He said: “For instance people who have hereditary traditional compound have resisted the law because their land is held in communal form without title and there is no way under urbanisation that you will not ask them to come and subscribe to a Certificate of Occupancy (C of O) which become difficult because no single individual can lay claim to such compound and the C of O must be in the name of an individual. That was an unintended consequence and we have accepted that.”
Atunwa added: “We have made six recommendations to the governor and the most important thing here is that we have asked that the Legal Notice of 2009 be revoked and that if the governor wants to do urbanisation government must then take into consideration some of the concerns earlier expressed by stakeholders. Hopefully this decision will lay the ghost of the controversy to rest.”
He, therefore, said: “We also recommended that there must be a review of the compensation /valuation rate for land acquired by the state in the process of urbanisation.”