The Chairman, Borno State Geographic Information Service (BOGIS), Bashir Shettima, has said that over 75 percent of landed property in Maiduguri Metropolises lacked legal titles.
He stated this last week in Maiduguri, while addressing newsmen on the agency’s efforts in ensuring perfection of titles. Shettima said: “Over 75per cent of landed properties in Maiduguri are held extra judiciary. They don’t have legal titles. What they have is just agreements from village or district heads of various communities.”
He explained that the development has prevented many businessmen, from accessing loans from banks and other financial institutions.
Shettima warned that agreements on lands with community leaders are not titles or Certificate of Occupancy for bank collaterals.
“Several Federal Government programmes; like Industrial and Agricultural Loan Schemes (IALS) would be hard to get by the people. Many plots of land issued to some people by Northern Nigeria and North East governments; were neither developed nor re-granted as provided by law.”
He emphasised that the validity of such grants, particularly land for commercial purposes whose tenure is 40 years, had since expired.
He explained that the state government was not out to take over such lands as being speculated, adding that the agency is encouraging people to come and register their land and be given title documents as well as pay their ground rents.
Meanwhile, the agency has warned that those given land and plans to sell or transfer to another person must also apply for consent of the state Governor.
He said this during an enlightenment programme organised in Maiduguri to sensitise people on processes to follow in obtaining their Certificate of Occupancy for properties. He stressed that the move is in line with the Land Use Act.
Shettima also disclosed that residents have been given three months to come for property documentation and warned that government would take the next line of action, which might not be palatable to landed property owners who flout the rule.