Residents and citizens of Akwa Ibom State have been advised to avoid taking the risk of encroaching on government land as they may eventually lose whatever investment or structure they put on such lands.
This charge was handed down by the Chairman of the Uyo Capital City Development Authority, UCCDA, Otuekong Prince Enobong Uwah when the Landords Association of Nung Ukot Itam and Mbribit paid him a courtesy call in his office .
The UCCDA helmsman who was reacting to reports of disputes over encroachment on Land acquired by the Government by private developers, observed that, those who seek to buy land for residential or commercial purposes should always crosscheck with either the Ministry of Lands or the UCCDA to ensure that such lands are free from every encumbrances, including designation as Government’s land.
He decried reliance on the activities of land grabbers and touts who defraud unsuspecting citizens by decieving them into buying lands already earmarked and acquired by Government, stressing that, such lands, even when they lie fallow for a long time will eventually be used for the purpose the government acquired them in the first instance.
He therefore warned that, anyone who buys or grabs such lands for his/her private ends is only doing so at personal risk. Prince Uwah further argued that, developers who seek to cut corners and end up bribing government officials to approve Purchase of such lands will also regret such indiscretions as they will ultimately bear the brunt of demolition of structures they go ahead to raise in such lands when the government finally come for the land in the interest of overriding public good.
Earlier, the spokesman of the Landords Association, Mr Aniekpeno Udokang had intimated the UCCDA boss of challenges faced by members of their association with some Government agencies over land that was wrongfully sold to them by agents. Mr Udokang said the Landords were eager for UCCDA to intervene in the matter with a view to finding lasting solutions to the problems.