The Director-General, Bureau of Lands, Alhaji Yusuf Abdulwahab disclosed this in Ilorin yesterday while presenting cheques to beneficiaries in 19 communities in the area.
He named the beneficiary communities to include Bindofu-Essun, Puta, Efagi, Estu-salam, Npagulu, Dumagi, Cheche and Landan. He said the land was acquired by the defunct Federal Military
Government for the establishment of the Lafiagi Sugar Company, adding that the company later became moribund and was sold by the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) to BUA International Limited, a subsidiary of BUA Group.
Abdulwahab said BUA could not access the property due to agitation by traditional land owners who insisted on being compensated because the land was not originally paid for.
He said the state government was playing a mediatory role in the matter, adding that the case between the communities and BUA had lingered for seven years.
He also said that the land acquired was 5,529 hectares, adding that compensation was being paid by BUA and BPE through the state government.
Abdulwahab said the state government thought it wise to mediate because of the company’s potential benefits to the state. Abdulwahab said the expected benefits would include employment opportunities for youths, enhanced social and economic activities in the area and improved infrastructure facilities.
He assured that all the concerns of the people would be addressed when the company begins operation and urged the communities and individuals to make judicious use of their payments and cooperate with the company in the interest of the development of the area and the state at large. (NAN)
Some of the beneficiaries told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that they would abide by government’s reconciliation initiative. They also lauded the government for its mediatory role and for ensuring their compensation. (NAN)