Managing Director, Edo State Geographic Information Service (EDOGIS), Architect Francis Osa Evbuomwan has assured landowners in the state that the agency is now open for seamless service to members of the public, noting that it is now mandatory to re-certify “all old C-of-Os and convert them to new digital C-of-Os to prevent duplication, multiple, fake or forged certificates.”
The EDOGIS is a successor agency to the defunct Ministry of Lands and Survey (previously known as the Lands Bureau), and is responsible for the issuance of Certificates of Occupancy, Governor’s Consent, Mortgage Consent, Lodgment of Surveys, among others.
Speaking to journalists, Evbuomwan said that the state has automated land management for efficiency, noting that landowners would now enjoy seamless services when processing relevant documents.
Stressing that rural communities are required to register communal lands, he said, “All communities are now mandated by the Edo State Lands Administration Law 2018 to register, certify and layout their communal lands before selling same to members of the public. It is now an offence in Edo State to circumvent any of these requirements.”
Arch. Evbuomwan restated the agency’s commitment to deepening land reforms initiated by Governor Godwin Obaseki, especially the approval for drastic reduction in all land-based charges. “Consequently, the price of C-of-Os has been reduced to a minimum of N50,000 only and will be delivered within 30 working days.
“All property owners in Edo State are now required by law to register their properties with EDOGIS in order to facilitate protection of their private properties under the Private Properties Protection Law of Edo State.”
Meanwhile, a cross section of landowners in the state, who spoke at the premises of the agency, said that the seamless service is commendable, lauding Governor Godwin Obaseki for making the process for acquiring land documents transparent.
A landowner, Mr. Osahon Philip, said that the agency has restored faith in the government, especially on land matters, as all the bureaucracies that characterise interfacing with government on such matters have been resolved.
According to him, “I am very happy with what the Governor has done with EDOGIS. Aside the customer friendly service they provide, the transparency of the whole process has made the application for land documents easy and fast.”
Mr. Emmanuel Enabulele, on his part, commended the use of automated processes for calculating the cost for processing documents, noting that the innovation would fast-track the application process and reduce human contact, which often leads to corruption.
He said, “I am surprised at the speed. It is a welcome development. This is how every government agency should run.”