The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) is under pressure from those who desire to own land in Abuja. This pressure is coming from the presidency, top government officials and/or their relatives/friends, top business people and even staff of FCTA.

It is said that aides of President Goodluck Jonathan throng power house of lands in Abuja, the Abuja Geographic Information system (AGIS) daily to complete the process of land allocation or regularize land titles.

A source said, “Never in the history of FCTA have I seen aggressive pursuit of land titles like this.”

Because of this rush, sources said AGIS is harvesting millions of naira from those seeking to secure their Certificate of Occupancy. It is said that the land grabbers are doing this because they fear that the coming government might revoke titles that have been issued in not quite clear circumstances. Two senior persons in the outgoing administration are said to be daily visitors to AGIS all to ensure they regularize titles for themselves and their associates and relatives.

FCTA staff are also in the game. Last Thursday, our reporter ran into a group of serving and retired staff of the administration pushing to get their own share of land allocation. They converged on the ministers office in Area 11 to work out ways they would get the ministers to fulfill his promise to them. They complained that though the minister had promised them land and they had coughed up N100,000 processing fee for it, they are yet to be given titles.

After taking roll call of those due for allocation, the meeting resolved to write the minister to urge him to approve the titles because time is running out.

it was gathered that FCT minister conceptualized the idea that those who have worked for FCTA from 1979 be rewarded with a plot of land in recognition of their long service. It was called FCT Long Service Award. Those that had served that long paid N100,000 and filled the requisite forms with AGIS in anticipation of titles.

First beneficiaries got plots in 2011. Government said land would be given according to land would be given according to land availability. They used first come, first served criterion.

Most of those who initially got were workers under the Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA). Those under FCTA alleged that they were left out.

Those that were not given were 260. They wrote but management said out of the number, 200 would be given because plots were not enough to cover all.

Equally disturbing is out of the 200 promised allocations, 23 were not given.

 

SOURCE: Daily Trust. Monday, April 20, 2015.

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