application of the Nigerian Land Use Act (the Act)1 might be asked: does a writ- evant for the similar provisions of the Land Use Act. A reasoned answer will. Land Use Act. Download the PDF This Law establishes the Land Use and Allocation Committee which is responsible for: a) advising the Governor on any. Vesting of land in the state. 2. Control and management of land advisory bodies. 3. Designation of urban areas. 4. Applicable law for the interim management of.
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PDF | Human society the world over is heavily dependent on land and its resources. It is not an overstatement to say that without land there would be no human. PDF | REGULATION Preamble: The law regulating use and management of land in Nigeria was changed to the Land Use Act in 1. PDF | SYNOPSIS: The aim of this paper is to look critically at the Land Use Act No . 6 of with particular reference to compensation for revocation of rights of.
The President Olusegun Obasanjo is the main person who is responsible for the implementing the act into the body of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. It was provided during the military regime in Nigeria. After that, Shagari —Led Federal Government handled it. What are the key features of the National Land Use Act today? It affects the structural changes in the land tenure system; It should have provided the fast economic growth; It should have provided the economic inequality of lands rising values; It should have made the lands available and cheap.
The implication of this act bothers only the landowners. The landowners should acquire a Certificate of Occupancy. Without this certificate, you can be named a legal owner of the land. Therefore, all the rights that you have for this land is a lease.
What does it mean for you? It means that the government may take your land without any compensation. The power to do such procedures are hidden in the Land Use Act of Therefore, the Governor is fully responsible for the allocation of land for the individual property to the agricultural or urban area. Therefore, the state Governors may have the unlimited power to the land use. Moreover, the power to control and manage the land was taken from the traditional families and chiefs in the Southern regions of Nigeria.
The main controversies and problems of the act The Land Use Act remains as the most controversial legislation act in Nigeria.
A lot of stakeholders still describe this act as the one that cripples the economy of the entire nation. A lot of experts may suggest that the act should be overviewed!
Moreover, this act should be removed from the Constitution. If this act stays within the measures of the constitution and without any reviewing, then Nigerians should expect no growth in terms of the real estate industry. With this provision, the governor becomes a trustee of all the land in the state and holds the allodial title to it.
Thus, it is argued that no person can claim unlimited interest on land since the commencement of the Act, because whatever interest that is claimed on land, is still subject to the superior title of the governor. Adekoya, C. Critics have commented that the character, nature and incidence of the Trust allegedly created is not clear and defined. See Omotola op. These powers are so enormous23 that it even overshadowed and made nonsense of the power of management of non urban land vested in the local government by virtue of section 6 of the Act.
Thus with the governor being vested with the allodial or radical title to all lands in the state, it is argued,24 all other interest in land become an estate less than freehold. According to this school of thought the best interest accruable under the Act could be likened to lease.
But has it been able to rationally and efficiently addressed the issues and problems that led to its promulgation positively and adequately?
The Act has generated and will continue to generate further discourse in view of its indigent drafting, inchoate and unclear nature of the right derivable under it, and the extent to which the law affects private property rights of the citizens.
See Umezulike op. Under section 3, the governor is empowered to declare at his discretion the land in the state as Urban and Non Urban land. He is given the exclusive management of Urban land, thus where he declares all the land in the state as urban land, no land is left in the local government to manage.
See I. See Section 48 Land Use Act. Though the Act did not define a right of occupancy and its extent, but it is trite that no right of occupancy has been granted beyond 99yrs. And the fact that the Act did not provide for renewal of the right of occupancy on expiration reinforced the conclusion that not only is the right of occupancy defeasible, but it is also of a determinable period, thus likened to a lease.
More so, they argued, because it has terms and covenant and certainty of duration.
See generally Ilegbune op. Unilag Press Some of the controversies raised by the Act seemed to have been settled by judicial pronouncement. Among these is the opinion that the best interest accruable under the Act is leasehold. However is this conclusion sacrosanct, particularly, in view of the nature and extent of rights vested in a deemed grantee of right of occupancy28?
This and others issues shall be subjected to forensic analysis in the following discourse. For example the issue as to nationalization or expropriation of land seemed to have been settled with the Supreme Court case of Abioye v. It has been argued that it is still possible to create freehold estate under Nigeria land law. Section 5 2 see also Smith I. O 23 JPPL p. Section 6.
The pertinent question to be answered at this juncture is, what is the nature of right granted under the Act, is it a freehold, leasehold or even a license. This question becomes more poignant when the position of the deemed grantee is considered. Many commentators have expressed diverse view on the nature of right of occupancy as to whether is a leasehold or not. Thus turning prior owners of land to tenants with limited, ascertainable, determinable and defeasible rights in the land.
This conclusion is premised arguably on the provisions of section 1 of the Act. It is however opined here that while the conclusion may be inescapable when the right of an express grantee is considered same conclusion may not be reached with respect to the right of a deemed grantee. Section 34 and See Emeka Chianu op. The bulk of the powers of the governor is evident in the certificate of occupancy which a deemed grantee is not oblige to take, for unlike express grantee he takes it at his own discretion.
Section 29 compensation is payable only for unexhausted improvement on the land and not on bare land. See the cases Dentsoho v. See also I. Smith in 23 JPPL p. See also Prof. In this respect, the position of the governor as the person in whom the land is vested can be likened to the position of the crown in England, where ownership of land is vested in the crown with the subjects owing only an interest in the land, which interest is defeasible.
It is thus an interest, which may enure in perpetuity but defeasible once there is no heir to inherit the estate upon which the land on the infinite nature of the right of a deemed grantee reverts to the grantor i.
Other notable interests in land are fee tail, life estate and leasehold interest. Such powers of the State or Community predate the Land Use Act as evident in customary family land ownership system and the various Compulsory Acquisition Laws in Nigeria. Emphasis supplied The preceding conclusion becomes inescapable for the following reason.
Firstly the application of the section is not limited to land subject to customary law alone for it provides, or otherwise howsoever. Thus the holder of other rights prior to the Act i. Secondly the Act did not define the extent and duration of the customary right of occupancy deemed granted under the section, it is thus argued that it is indeterminate.
The implication of this position vis a vis the just administration of the Land Use Act is enormous. Section 36 3 see also section 36 4 in respect of developed land in non-urban area. Read the Amicus curie submission of Prof J. Omotola in Savanah Bank V Ajilo Banire op. With the present position of the law, it is not clear the duration and extent of a right of occupancy obtainable under the Act particularly with reference to a deemed grant.
Thus while some people i. It implies that there will come a time when the security and or proprietary value of the certificate of occupancy expressly granted will diminish when compared to that of a deemed grant particularly where the deemed grantee possesses a registered conveyance prior to the Land Use Act. This will be so because at a point in time the express grant certificate of occupancy will expire, while the registered conveyance of the deemed grantee will remain sacrosanct as same is still recognized by the Act.
This conclusion is further reinforced by the fact that the Land Use Act does not make provision for the renewal of an expired certificate of occupancy, thus giving the Governor absolute discretion as to whether the express grantee will continue to hold the land after the expiration of the time stated in the certificate or not.
In practice the Governor usually grants a tenure of not beyond 99 years, but there are instances where a tenure of a lesser duration has been granted. Section 5 Land Use Act. This scenario will further increase the stock of land in Government possession and discretion at the expense of individual land ownership.