From Abdulrazaq Mungadi, Gombe
Gombe State Government has directed residents to suspend all construction works on land to give way for the special development zone plan of the government in the state.
According to the task force on Gombe Capital Special Development Zone, the directive was for residents in Wuro-Liman community in the Garko ward of Akko Local Government Area.
Addressing reporters shortly after meeting the community members, the state’s commissioner of information, Mr Julius Ishaya, revealed that the task force which is being headed by the deputy governor was in the community to communicate plans of the task force as it affects communities with customary land titles.
‘By customary titles, it means that this area is not laid out by the government, individuals just acquire lands or farmland and end up constructing structures on it,’ he said.
‘Because this new policy and drive for the special development zone the task force is in the process of integrating and incorporating this customary title into a layout,’ the commissioner said.
He further explained that ‘this customary title is right in the centre of the city now and so these are the decision or part of the process the task force is working on to integrate these customary titles into a layout based on the current existing structures.’
Mr Julius assured that the resident has no reason to panic as the state government has no plans to take over or revoke anybody’s land in the state.
He said ‘we have talked to the residents that there is no need for them to panic, no need for them to be afraid of any form of molestation by government or by any government task force.’
He explained that the suspension of construction works was to give way for a sensor of the existing structures in the affected area which is being turned to a government layout to benefit from the government’s plans of providing basic essential services.
The commissioner said ‘the task force is going to embark on sensors of the current structures to make sure that we have what is currently existing.
‘We are also saying with a strong voice that all forms of new constructions should be suspended immediately so that it will give the task force the opportunity to carry out the sensors for our technical people to begin the process of the integration of the customary titles into the government layout.
‘We are asking the people to comply so that we are not pushed to the point of enforcing the compliance,’ Mr Julius added while saying assuring that at the end of the integration process the people will have access roads and types of services required at a government layout.
He also said ‘most importantly these people will have titles that will serve as collateral for them at whatever level they want to use it. So, we believe that the government is working for the good of the people instead of the negative narrative that we have out there.’