✕ CLOSE Online Special City News Entrepreneurship Environment Factcheck Everything Woman Home Front Islamic Forum Life Xtra Property Travel & Leisure Viewpoint Vox Pop Women In Business Art and Ideas Bookshelf Labour Law Letters
Click Here To Listen To Trust Radio Live
SPONSOR AD

We ‘re sanitising land administration in Kaduna – DG KADGIS

Director General of Kaduna Geographic Information Service (KADGIS) ALTINE JIBRIN, is versatile in land matters, having set up the first electronic land registry in Nigeria.…

Director General of Kaduna Geographic Information Service (KADGIS) ALTINE JIBRIN, is versatile in land matters, having set up the first electronic land registry in Nigeria. In this interview, the Director General revealed how she is replicating her feat at the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) in Kaduna state.

From available reports, the operations of Kaduna Geographic Information Service (KADGIS) are said to have been automated, but there are several office files all over your table. How far have you gone with the automation process? 

 

Overtime, the operations of land management and administration have been manual, which entail opening of files. Land matters are all about documents and no one can lay claim over any piece of land without documentary evidence. The old process, from opening files for land allocation, to when the Certificate of Occupancy is issued and papers keep piling up in the process, is very cumbersome. In easing this process, we have introduced the automation system which ensures that any land file must be scanned and stored in a digital format on a computer system. The digital process entails scanning all documents in a land file, from the first page to the last. We also have a barcode tag pasted on the (hardcopies of the) file to indicate that the files have been scanned and stored in a digital format. We are currently on this process and we intend to scan and store land files, from as far back as 100 years. We started this process in 2016.

With the automation process that is now in place, what is the average time frame required for someone to be issued a Certificate of Occupancy for land in Kaduna state? 

The processes vary. If the land is allocated to an individual by the government, the state government will task the individual to provide some vital documents before a C of O is issued. Failure by individuals to produce the required documents in time, contributes to the time frame required to process the land file. However, from an allocation point of view, the duration of processing is 30 working days; that is if the individual has met all the necessary requirements and provides the necessary documents. Afterwards, an offer is given to the individual and there are fees that must be paid for the final issuance of the Certificate of Occupancy. In some instances, we have individuals stalling at different stages of their land application by not providing response or acceptance in due time and this, in the long run, impacts on our delivery time.

We are currently doing a recertification process for land owners with Customary Certificates of Occupancy and statutory Certificate of Occupancy, where we issue them a new title. And the new Certificate of Occupancy issued will be signed by the Kaduna state Governor himself. We are currently in a clean-up process, to ensure that lands are properly documented and their purpose or use are verified, justified and appropriate.

Can you explain this recertification process further, especially where old land owners will get C of Os that are signed by the Governor? 

We have processes that entail regularization, systematic property registration and also regularizing undocumented layouts. Due to lack of proper sanctions in the past, development on lands were not being monitored and layouts were wrongly allocated by real estate agents. However, we have taken detailed inventory of all the layouts that are not planned by the government and we intend to put these layouts in a better use by regularizing them, by issuing them Certificates of Occupancy. But they are going to be sanctioned for violating the law.

The systematic property registration is a Programme for Result (P for R) arrangement between the Kaduna state government and the World Bank. This partnership intends to focus on the unplanned areas that have inhabitants who are on the lowest cadre in the society. The World Bank and Kaduna state objective is to capture and contain these kind of settlements that exist in the urban areas and metropolis. Our team from the agency, goes to these settlements to convince the residents, through their District Heads or religious leaders, on the need for them to do proper documentation of their lands and properties. If these settlements are properly documented, it will avail land and property owners the opportunity to access some funds, loans and mortgages. The documentation fee is N5,000 and the governor, in his wisdom, noticed that in this part of the country women seldom own lands or properties; so he used his discretion to subsidize the fee for any woman who wants to do the systematic property registration from the initial fee of N5,000 to N2,500.

We also introduced the women empowerment enterprise to these settlements, which will cater for the smallest business unit. We also engage and enlighten the women on the need for self empowerment using localized training techniques.

What happens when a property is inherited and the recertification process is done, whose picture will appear on the joint Certificate of Occupancy?

What you are referring to falls under the systematic property registration process. From experiences in the northern part of the country, you will hardly find properties owned by couples, most properties are owned by the man and this is very peculiar to people in the localities. It is called multiple ownership. It entails a consensus and agreement by parties that own the inherited property, on whose picture will be placed on the Certificate of Occupancy. There will be forms and an affidavit to be filled, in order to agree on whose picture will appear on the C of O. We will then tag the person as the administrator, there are documents to be filled by the administrator which will be signed by the co-owners of the property. Because even if the administrator’s picture appears on the C of O, there is a section in the forms that provides information of the other owners. This measure is to curb fraudulent activities on transactions of lands and properties; before any transaction can be done, it must be a joint agreement by these other interests.

If a private property is sold, will it be necessary for the new owner to approach KADGIS and change the title? 

In recent times, we have reduced the number of documents required in the past. If the documents are old ones, then the new owner should key into our recertification process as Power of Attorney document is no more a legal document that is binding. The new owner will bring a Deed of Assignment that will go through the Governor to get the consent. When the consent is obtained in the Deed of Assignment, the closing part in the content, that is the terms and conditions of the document. It will give detailed information about the land and the new owner, even if the picture on C of O, the Deed of Assignment serves as a subsisting document that covers the contents of the C of O.

With the ongoing recertification, people can bring the old documents and it will be captured. Normally, when we are to issue a Deed of Assignment, we access and value of the property and a percentage will be charged for the consent to be assigned. But because of the recertification is a flat rate that is assigned, we assess the old C of O, Deed of Assignment, Power of Attorney and these documents will be condensed into one C of O which will bear the owner’s picture. The old C of O will be surrendered and cancelled. However, if a purchased property has the new C of O, for a fee and with a valid Deed of Assignment, we can issue a new C of O which will bear the name and picture of the new owner of the property.

With the automation process and these improvements that you have highlighted, how have all these translated to an efficient and effective land administration in Kaduna state?

This question will be best answered by people who used to come to the agency in the past. They will tell you the laborious processes they encountered and numerous things that transpired under the table. We are currently in a transition process and we are still on it and reaching perfection gradually. The process can’t be executed overnight, we still have files that are being captured and digitalized at the moment. The project is going side by side, we don’t want to halt one process for the other. We must continue to operate and we have not stopped our operation with the contractors and consultant and there is no conflict. With the ongoing automation, there is transparency, better service delivery and if people come here with bunch of documents, they leave with just one document. To an extent, it is safe to say that it is a very good improvement of what used to be. The ambience and appearance of the agency is much better now, people can also access our website to download forms and even make payments online.