Kaduna government and ABU disagree over land sale and ownership

The Kaduna State Government and Ahmadu Bello University (ABU), Zaria are in a war of words over the status of land measuring 196,258 hectares, which ABU says belongs to its College of Agriculture and Animal Science at Mando, Kaduna.

While ABU accused the state government of “land grabbing”, the Kaduna State Urban Planning and Development Authority (KASUPDA) accused the university management of having violated the purpose for which the land was originally allocated.

KASUPDA Managing Director Isma’il Umaru-Dikko said the land, which he said was nearly 360 hectares, had been left unused, adding that between 2009 and 2010, the school collaborated with the federal Department of Housing and approximately 80 hectares of the land had been exercised for residential development without the consent of the then Governor.

“The C of O, which is the G.ITEM held in trust by the Institute of Agriculture is for this purpose that was highlighted in the endowment in 1965, for animal husbandry. Unfortunately, 80 hectares were exercised, one in four over the entire land and almost 1,000 plots were subdivided and allocated to anyone without any recourse to the land authority,” Dikko said.

However, ABU management yesterday denied having sold any land.

A statement issued by ABU Director, Directorate of Public Affairs, Auwalu Umar, said the college has the ownership certificate (G.ITEM-No.1060) of the entire land on which it was established , in addition to the survey site plan for the entire college boundaries.

He said university authorities fenced off the entire college many years ago to prevent land grabbers, but KASUPDA illegally entered and demolished the perimeter fence that bounded its boundaries.