10th March, 2022
The Lagos State Government on Thursday challenged traditional rulers in the state to move against activities of land grabbers in their domains.
The Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Moyosore Onigbanjo, SAN, spoke at a stakeholders’ meeting organised by the Ministry of Justice and the State Special Taskforce on Land Grabbers is to inundate the residents of the Lagos State Taskforce on Land Grabbers Law, 2016, for residents of Badagry Division.
The meeting was held in an effort to rid the state of the menace of land grabbers and ensure that those found culpable of the crime are prosecuted.
Onigbanjo said the meeting was to intimate stakeholders on the Law and how it protects the rights of land owners, communities and indeed the State from the activities of Land Grabbers.
Onigbanjo, who was represented by the Solicitor General and Permanent Secretary in the State’s Ministry of Justice, Ms. Titilayo Shitta-Bey noted that the State was leaving nothing to chance to educate Lagosians on the negative effects of land grabbing, as this had led to the breakdown of law and order, economic instability, among others.
The commissioner further disclosed that the Ministry was working with relevant agencies of government for proper implementation of the Land Grabbers Law, 2016 so as to nip the menace in the bud.
He also charged the traditional rulers to sensitise the youths and other members of their communities on government’s efforts on land grabbing.
The Attorney General warned that the government would not tolerate the activities of land grabbers in the State, noting that the Land Grabbers Law 2016 has provisions to punish offenders with up to 10 years imprisonment and a fine up to the sum of N5 million or both.
Coordinator, Lagos State Special Taskforce on Land Grabbers, Owolabi Arole said it was imperative to brainstorm with major stakeholders on indigenous ideas to nip the activities of land grabbers in the bud.
According to Arole, most land grabbers were often not indigenes of the State, but unscrupulous elements who had found means of creating mayhem.
He said the agency would not rest on its oars until it rid the state of land grabbing activities.
Lawmaker, representing Ojo Constituency 2, Olatunji Tijani said there is a clear line between Land Grabbers and Land Owners, adding that the menace of land grabbing was a result of lack of partnership among stakeholders and the never ending rot in the system.
The Aladi ,Onijanikin of Ijanikin Kingdom, Oba Momodu Afolabi Asafa clamoured for unity among traditional rulers in the domain, adding that land matters should not cause disaffection and disunity among residents
Stakeholders at the sensitisation exercise who were drawn from various parts of the Lagos West Senatorial District called for more synergy between government, law enforcement agencies and stakeholders to further stamp out the activities of land grabbers in the State.
The stakeholders also attributed the rise in land grabbing activities to greed and illiteracy.
The event with the theme: “Land Grabbers, the Law and Your Rights,’’ had in attendance lawmakers, judicial officials, traditional rulers, security personnel, representatives of religious bodies, land owners, residents, among others.