Land Grabbing is against Benin culture _Benin Palace


The palace of the Oba of Benin has clarified that the practice of Land grabbing is against the Benin culture as may be assume in some quarters.

The Palace made the Clarification through Benin Traditional Council, BTC, during a press parley on the directives of Oba Ewuare II by Chief Henry Osato Bazuaye ,the Aiwerioghene of Benin kingdom.

He said the public announcement is to clarify the issue surrounding the recent incident at Ukhiri village in Ikpoba-Okha Local Government Area of Edo State,

According to chief Bazuaye, the palace regards land grabbing at the rate which it is going as akin to domestic terrorism and kidnapping.

He further said the practice of land grabbing in Benin City and environs has reached an alarming proportion as individuals and corporate owners of vacant land often see their property encroached upon and sold off by unscrupulous communityContinuing, Chief Aiwerioghene said these land grabbers sell other peoples’ land knowing fully well that their action is illegal and again the purchasers are also often aware they are purchasing other peoples’ land illegally

“The land grabbers and the illegal purchasers argue that once a structure is hurriedly erected on the illegal acquired property,the Palace of the Oba of Benin forbids such property to be brought down and for this reason,the practice of grabbing and developing other peoples ‘ property has reach such an unacceptable dimension, this practice must stop”,he added

He pointed out that in Ukhiri village ,the case of land grabbing was taken to unprecedented heights, the community leader ,the Enogie of Ulegun physically attacked the neighbouring community of Ukhiri and annexed their lands ,the Enogie of Ulegun and the youths then proceeded to sell off of other people and corporate bodies land located in Ukhiri Including land that is known to belong to the Palace

Chief Aiwerioghene however noted that the Palace is inundated with cases of land grabbing by victims who come to seek redress and in most cases peoples’ farmlands are invaded and sold off to willing accomplices, adding that in a current case ,some youths in Ogheghe community destroyed the perimeter fence of a church land belonging to Christ Embassy and proceeded to sell off the plots of land ,the Palace has strongly condemned this action towards Christ Embassy

He used the occasion to commend and encourage the State Government to do more in arresting this unsavouring behavior of grabbing other peoples land and leaving the victims with no form of compensation or respite

Chief Aiwerioghene subsequently noted that several parcels of land belonging to the Palace have been taken over by land grabbers adding that the resent incident at Ukhiri happened because of the impunity of the Enogie and youths of Ulegun as well as illegal buyers who typically built up structures hurriedly to avoid the law.

He reiterated that the Palace condemns the practice of land grabbing as it is against the culture of Benin, ” the Palace regards land grabbing at the rate which it is going as akin to domestic terrorism and kidnapping, the only difference is they are kidnapping and terrorizing the lawful owners which can lead to communal crisis and breach of peace .

This system of land grabbing is a reconstruction form of the outlawed Community Development Association (CDA) notorious activities,which will not be condoled. The Palace enjoins the public to peacefully resist domestic terrorism in any form”.

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