President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has charged the newly constituted Board of the Lands Commission to clear the mess at the Commission to ensure the process of acquisition and use of land is not cumbersome, and is governed by law.
He was speaking at the inauguration the new Board of the Lands Commission in Accra.
According to President Akufo-Addo “on a daily basis, and I know I am not alone in making this observation, we hear of countless lamentations from many Ghanaians who face great difficulty in trying to access services at the Lands Commission.”
The processes of procuring land and registering land titles, the President said, are fraught with so much bureaucracy and corruption.
He noted that, for example, to conduct a simple search of the details of a parcel of land, before making final payment to the owners, is a process that takes weeks, and if you are not lucky, months.
“Even that one would have to part with some amount of money before the search is conducted at the Lands Commission. After receiving the details of the search, and satisfying oneself about the genuineness or otherwise of the land, then comes another nightmare – registration of the land title,” the President said.
He continued, “We have heard on several occasions about mysterious disappearances of indentures and other land title documents from the Lands Commission, only for them to be replaced with documents belonging to others. If you are lucky enough to have your documents remaining intact at the Commission, registering a piece of land can take years.”
The President said it appears that for the right amount of money, any transaction, legal or illegal, could be procured at the Lands Commission, adding that it is deeply regrettable that the very problems that led to the establishment of the Lands Commission and the implementation of a Land Administration Reform Programme still persist.
“This is not right and this has to end,” President Nana Akufo-Addo said.
The President told the Board that the Ghanaian people were dissatisfied with the direction the country was headed, and thus, voted to change course and give them a Ghana where systems work – where shady acts such as those taking place at the Lands Commission are curtailed.
Streamline administration of lands
President Akufo-Addo therefore charged the Board to implement the policies contained in the NPP’s 2016 Manifesto, aimed at streamlining the administration of lands in our country.