Ekiti: Land-grabbers face four years in prison

Ekiti State Deputy Governor Bisi Egbeyemi said on Wednesday that the state Property Protection (Anti-Land Grabbing) Law 2019 was aimed at ending land disputes in Ado Ekiti and other parts of the state.

Egbeyemi, who spoke at the palace of the Ewi of Ado Ekiti, Oba Adeyemo Adejugbe, advised quarter chiefs, family heads and landowners to be truthful and carry stakeholders along while selling land.

The Director of Drafting, Ministry of Lands, Mr Akaninyeme Akpan, said “Section 2 of (the law) prohibits forcible acquisition or takeover of land with the offence carrying a penalty of four years’ imprisonment or a fine of N500,000.

“Entering by violence or use of weapons or charms to chase people out of their land is liable to four years’ imprisonment or an option of fine of N500,000,” the lawyer said.

According to Akpan, six months’ imprisonment or an option of N200,000 fine awaits anybody convicted of illegal occupation of another person’s land under the law.

He said, “Any chief, family head or individual member who intends to sell a large expanse of land must get approval from their traditional ruler and Ministry of Lands before going ahead.”

Governor Kayode Fayemi signed the Property Protection Law on June 4 following its passage by the immediate past House of Assembly.

The Commissioner for Lands, Housing and Urban Development, Mr Febisola Adewale, said the ministry would continue to sensitise various communities to the law to stop unlawful takeover of land.

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