April 1, 2019
By Ibrahim Tarawallie
Minister of Lands, Housing and Environment vowed to continue chasing those engage in the business of grabbing lands in the Western area.
According Dr. Dennis Sandy, who was addressing the media last week at his Youyi Building Conference Hall in Freetown, the land grabbing scheme in the country is very interesting as land gabbers have designed a new technique of grabbing land.
He said because land grabbers know fully well that they don’t have official documents, they rely on their own documents which are 99.9% fake.
He stated that because those seeking private or state lands don’t have the necessary skills, anybody can take a signed conveyance to them and hoodwinked into believing that the said document is authentic.
He added that the ministry is in possession of series of conveyances stamped and signed, but not registered with the ministry.
“This land business is not funny, only God knows what we are going through here. We can’t sit here and allow people to continue grabbing land illegally. It is not easy with regards land administration in this country. Sometimes we have to be so reactionary, otherwise we won’t have results produced,” he said.
Dr. Sandy disclosed that several letters have been received from Sierra Leoneans in the diaspora, complaining that they have land documents and wanted to know whether they were correct or not..
The lands minister emphasised that there were not community lands in the Western Area, but only private and state lands.
For private lands, Dr. Sandy said owners must have their conveyances and site plans, signed by a License Surveyor on the right and the Director of Surveys and Lands on the left.
“People are now encroaching on educational lands and we will not allow that to continue. We understand that processes and procedures should be followed in carrying out our work but not at all times. Sometimes we have to act like eagle otherwise by the time we are there, it will be so problematic,” Dr. Sandy noted.
“We have never entered into anybody’s land when it is not a state land. Probably, we went there to know whether the individual has a building permit and environmental control to build,” he added.