Muhammad Ibrahim, Rector of the Kaduna Polytechnic, on Tuesday said the Institution would seek legal action to recover its land encroached on by the Gbagyi Villa community in Kaduna State.
Ibrahim, who addressed journalists in Kaduna on Tuesday, alleged that the community had encroached into the Polytechnic’s land and built over 3,000 houses and 43 churches.
He said: “The institution will recover its total land encroached by the community through legal means.”
The Rector said the Polytechnic has all the documents to back its claims on the land, which it legally procured in 1975, with compensation paid to the then occupant of the land.
He said: “The institution duly paid compensation to the landowners before the land of about 1,000 hectares was transferred to the polytechnic between 1976 to 1977.
“It could be recalled that members of the community last week protested against the State Government plan to demolish the houses situated on the land.
“When the land was acquired, a total of N168,169 kobo was paid as compensation between 1976 to 1977 to 158 people living there at that time.
“I think we started receiving reports of encroachment on the land in 2009 and we reported the issue to police, DSS and the state government before we took the issue to court.
“We took the ownership of the land after due process.
“We have all facts and documents to show that the land legally belongs to us.
“The question here is: did we get the land legally?
“Was there compensation paid?
“Was the land encroached?
“So all we are asking is justice because the land is ours.
“We just want the world to know that our land is being encroached right before our eyes despite late Ibrahim Yakowa’s intervention when he was the Governor of the State.
“I remembered the late Governor intervened and we had an out of court settlement with the community, in which a White Paper was released with a condition that there should be no further encroachment from both parties.
“As I talk to you now, the land has been encroached by some people in the communities.
“We just want our land back because we have all documents and facts to claim our land back.”
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Gbagyi Villa Community had last week protested the State Government’s plan to demolish houses alleged to have encroached into the Polytechnic land.
They claimed that more than 3,000 houses had been marked for demolition after the March 26 deadline given by the state government.
The Rector appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to intervene, to prevent further encroachment and ensure peaceful coexistence.
Ibrahim said: “My appeal is for the President to intervene on this issue because we are a peace loving people and will want to continue living with the communities around us peacefully.”