The Lands Commission yesterday began a process to recover encroached state lands at Amrahia, Mpehuasem and Nungua (Borteyman) in the Greater Accra Region.
A statement signed and released by the Executive Secretary of the Lands Commission, James Ebenezer Kobina Dadson, explained that the exercise is aimed at recovering and protecting all state lands, which have been acquired by illegal persons or groups in the aforementioned areas.
According to the statement, the demolition exercise is being carried out with the assistance of the Ghana Police Service, and in line with Section 236 of the Land Act, 2020 (Act 1036).
“The Government of Ghana, through the Lands Commission, administers all state-acquired and vested lands in the country. The Lands Commission has received a number of reports with great contestation, of encroachments on state lands within Amrahia, Mpehuasem and Nungua (Borteyman) in Accra by unknown armed men,” the Commission said.
The statement further disclosed that the illegality started during the festive season in last year December and continues to occur.
Parcels under threat
The Lands Commission indicated that these parcels under threat are parts of Government acquisitions with compensations paid.
“The first is state Lands (Kweiman-Amrahia – Site for Modern Diary Farm) Instrument, 1970 (E.I.47) with approximate area of 1,381.995 acres. The second is state Lands – (Accra-Mpehuasem – Site for Accra Training College) Instrument, 2009 (E. I. 16) with approximate area of 111.25 acres; and third also state Lands – (Accra-Nungua – Site for Site for Livestock Farm) Instrument, 1940 (Certificate of Title 214/40) with approximate area of 2,570.05 acres,” the Commission noted.
The statement also intimated that in all the acquisitions above, on the goodwill of Government, some portions of the sites had been released to the pre-acquisition owners.
“Following a reconnaissance inspection of sites in Borteyman, Amanhria and Mphehuasem, the joint team of Lands Administrators and Police Officers agreed on the urgency of a more extensive exercise to recover and protect all the encroached portions, including demolishing of unauthorised structures,” it added.
Protecting govt lands
The Executive Secretary stressed that the exercise was in line with their mandate, which is to protect government lands and ensure that all developments, especially on State lands, conform to well-planned schemes.
He pointed out that “State lands must not be left for people to develop unauthorised structures with serious ramifications for the country’s future”.
“Also, we should not sit down for people to just encroach on government-owned lands and take them as their private properties; that should never be the case.”
He also pointed out that most of the ongoing development at the sites had been done without proper development schemes, adding that even after sending out a number of notices to developers to discontinue work, and regularize documents, that effort was rubbished by the developers.
He said the Lands Commission and all other stakeholders would continue this action of demolition peacefully at all affected areas.
He reiterated that those erecting structures in the areas should halt all their activities to enable the Commission embark on the planning scheme for the proper lay out.
He also urged residents who own completed buildings on the lands to visit the Lands Commission to own up and regularize their occupancy.