FCTA may prosecute defiant owners of revoked lands

By Nathaniel Shaibu

The Federal Capital Territory Administration says it may begin to take actions against defiant land owners for tampering with lands previously revoked by the order of the FCT minister, Nyesom Wike.

The Director of the FCT Department of Development Control, Muktar Galadima, gave the hint after officials of the department stopped owners from developing on their lands in spite of the revocation order.

The officials, who were accompanied by some security agents, confiscated building equipment found on the sites, and chased away some workers while others were arrested majorly for profiling.

The PUNCH reports that the FCT minister had ordered the revocation of about 165 plots of land, in a document signed by the FCTA Permanent Secretary, Olusade Adesola, on September 21, 2023.

According to the document, the lands were revoked due to the violation and contravention of terms of development of the Rights of Occupancy, as contained in Section 28(5) (a) & (b) of the Land Use Act.

Speaking with pressmen during the operation,  Galadima disclosed that the department acted on information that some owners had returned to the revoked lands to continue working, warning that those who defaulted may be prosecuted.

“So, we are on this operation to ensure that all the revoked plots, nobody goes back and works on them, and also to use this opportunity to call on the public that any revoked property that somebody is trying to work on, definitely the Administration will not only remove such structures, but will also ensure prosecution of the person involved.

The revocation just commenced last week and then we just got information that some people wanted to go back to site, and we have already intimated our officials to be on the watch out, to make sure that nobody goes back to work, because any officials found wanting will be severely dealt with in accordance with the laid down civil service rules and regulations,” Galadima said.

The director also stated that he was unaware of reports that some of the land owners had taken the matter to court to seek redress, adding that even if it was so, court processes had to be communicated to the Administration.

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