The Kaduna State Government and Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria are in a war of words over the status of a land measuring 196.258 hectares, which ABU said belongs to its College of Agriculture and Animal Science in Mando, Kaduna.
While ABU has accused the state government of “land grabbing,” the Kaduna State Urban Planning and Development Authority (KASUPDA) accused the university’s management of violating the purpose for which the land was originally allocated for.
The Director-General of KASUPDA, Isma’il Umaru-Dikko said the land, which he claimed was close to 360 hectares had been left without utilisation adding that between 2009 and 2010, the school collaborated with the Federal Ministry of Housing and about 80 hectares of the land had been exercised for residential development without the consent of the then governor.
“The C of O, which is the G.ITEM held in trust by the Institute of Agriculture is for that purpose that was highlighted in the allocation in 1965, for livestock rearing. Unfortunately, 80 hectares was exercised, which is one over four plus of the entire land and close to 1,000 plots was subdivided and allocated to whoever without any recourse to land authority,” Dikko said.
However, the management of ABU yesterday denied selling any piece of the land.
A statement issued by ABU’s Director, Public Affairs Directorate, Auwalu Umar, said the college had the ownership certificate (G.ITEM-No.1060) of the entire land on which it was established, in addition to the survey site plan for the entire college boundaries.
He said the university authorities had fenced the entire college many years ago in order to prevent land grabbers but KASUPDA illegally trespassed and demolished the perimeter fence that demarcated its boundaries.