Wike Forms Task Force to Assess Land Swap Proposal

Nyesom Wike's Bold Move, Taskforce Established to Evaluate Land Swap Initiative in the FCT

Nyesom Wike, the FCT Minister, has taken a decisive step in addressing challenges surrounding the Land Swap Initiative initiated by his predecessors. The initiative, which commenced in 2012, has faced setbacks attributed to various factors.

City & Crime reports that one of the prominent challenges stems from resistance to relocation by certain indigenous communities affected by the initiative, advocating for integration instead.

The Land Swap Initiative, launched in 2012, aimed to foster sustainable urban development in the FCT. The core idea was to exchange undeveloped or underutilized land owned by the government with private developers. In return, the developers would be granted Certificates of Occupancy (C of O) for the land, allowing them to develop and commercialize the properties. The initiative was envisioned as a catalyst for infrastructure development, addressing housing deficits, and promoting economic growth in the capital city.

Over the years, the Land Swap Initiative has faced challenges that have hindered its smooth implementation. These challenges include legal complexities, delays in the issuance of Certificates of Occupancy, disputes over land valuation, and concerns raised by various stakeholders. These issues have not only slowed down the progress of the initiative but have also raised questions about its effectiveness in achieving its intended goals.

Recognizing the importance of the Land Swap Initiative and its potential impact on the development of the FCT, Nyesom Wike, the FCT Minister, has taken a proactive approach. Rather than allowing challenges to persist, Wike has established a taskforce to comprehensively evaluate the initiative. This move demonstrates a commitment to transparent governance, addressing stakeholder concerns, and ensuring that the Land Swap Initiative aligns with the broader developmental goals of the FCT.

The taskforce, led by Michael Chinda, has been entrusted with the responsibility of conducting a thorough review of the Land Swap Initiative. One of the primary focuses of the task force is the examination of the issuance of Certificates of Occupancy. This critical aspect has been a source of contention, with delays affecting the progress of projects and causing frustration among developers.

By considering stakeholders’ concerns and engaging in a meticulous evaluation, the taskforce aims to identify bottlenecks, streamline processes, and propose solutions that will enhance the effectiveness of the Land Swap Initiative. The collaborative effort between government representatives, developers, and other stakeholders is crucial in fostering an environment conducive to sustainable urban development.

In response to these challenges, Wike has established a taskforce specifically tasked with scrutinizing the Land Swap Initiative, focusing on the issuance of Certificates of Occupancy (C of O). This taskforce has been granted the authority to address complaints related to the land swap.

Acknowledging concerns raised by various stakeholders about the initiative, the minister emphasized the urgency of a comprehensive review. The taskforce, led by Michael Chinda, the Senior Special Assistant to the Minister on Lands, Urban, and Regional Planning, has been given a two-month timeframe to conduct the review and deliver actionable results.

Wike stated, “We have had a lot of complaints about land swaps. You have been mandated to look at the agreement and consider its favorability to the government.” This move reflects the government’s commitment to ensuring a thorough evaluation of the Land Swap Initiative, addressing concerns, and optimizing its impact.

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