By AKHIGBE Dominic M
TUE, JULY 4 2017-What if you just discovered that your land has been sold to more parties than only you?, Or the documents that you possess concerning your piece of land are mere forgeries?, Or, it could be that you left this land undeveloped for a while only to return to discover that a different person has started developing your land; what are your likely remedies? How do you solve this mind rendering issue instantly and beat these crafty crooks to it? These are very likely questions that are common in the terrain we find ourselves while buying family lands popularly referred to as ‘omon onile’ lands. Thank goodness that the Property Protection Law of 2016 (Lagos state) has brought a level of sanity.
However, this law is not full-proof as some dare-devil professional land grabbers have started devising very ingenious strategies to circumvent this noble intention by the government to protect the interest of property owners by plugging the possible loopholes in the Law. This is a matter for another day though. Let us see how you could be insulated from the criminal ingenuity of these professional land grabbers and the various Titles that could rescue you from their jaws should they come preying at your hard earned landed property.
In the case of Nwokorobia Vs Nwogu in 2009; the Supreme Court held that ‘…one of the ways to prove ownership of title to land is by production of the Title Documents…’
This has made it apt that Title is key in land ownership. Any other calculation or permutation puts the individual at the mercy of the system. There is no superior way to demonstrate ownership of landed property than possessing infallible title to same.
Titles of all sorts are available. This could be any of or a combination of one or more of the following; Certificate of Occupancy, Deed of Sublease, Deed of Assignment, Deed of Gift, Deed of Partition, Registered Survey and many more. The fact is; no sufficient and effective claim can be laid on a Property without a Title. Therefore; rescuing your embattled landed property from grabbers would rely on the possession of any of the above a a combination of more than one of it to suffice.
….to be continued
Akhigbe Dominic.M. Esq., /Property Law Expert/CEO, H.I.E Properties & Homes Ltd/SENIOR STRATEGIC PARTNER, PropertyLogic Incorporated/Seasoned Business Coach/Columnist of The BusinessDay/ContributingEditor,govandbusinessjournal.com.ng <http://govandbusinessjournal.com.ng>*