Land ownership is great and does not have to be cumbersome the way Omo Onile makes it.
The Omo Onile scourge is worst in Lagos and Ogun States of Nigeria. Other states in Southern Nigeria have their own local parallels and I have heard of some of them, strangely, in Abuja.
Who is Omo Onile? ……He is a land urchin. He sells lands that he has no right to and sometimes obtains forged documents to prove his title.
Omo Onile also could belong to a traditional family who claim their entitlement from historical possession. They believe that because their forefathers settled on the land, living there and cultivating it, they the descendants are entitled to sell as they wish.
The second kind of Omo Onile, recognises that Land Use Act has taken away their proprietary rights to land, so make all attempts to obtain an excision of the land they claim from the state government, from which they sell to unsuspecting investors.
1. They sell before obtaining valid title. Once the government grants them an excision, they start selling, sometimes showing unsuspecting members of the public only the letter from the state government. They tell them gazette is pending. Gazette is not title. It is a government Notice Paper.
2. All members of the family purportedly sell to unsuspecting buyers. Only the family head, principal members and family secretary together, as one, are authorised to sell.
3. They sell to more than one person because they are aware that you cannot obtain valid title documents in time to obtain planning approval. You must be ready to take possession of the land and visit it often.
4. Sometimes the land urchins sell land that government has not verified. You need to get a certificate of verification from the Survey department stating that the land is free from any government acquisition and that it is good for the purpose you bought e.g Residential purposes.
5. Many times the document they give to you is forged. Check and cross check at the Lands Registry in addition to your survey search. Do a Local Government search also to make sure that the land does not have debt in form of land charges, if it is land in a developed area.
6. Even property developers fall prey to Omo Onile scams so cross check their own title deeds if you are buying from them.
7. Make sure that the document they give to you actually grants them legal right to sell. There are many Powers of Attorney swimming around town, cross check with a property lawyer.
Falling victim of property scam can be very hurtful. More so that it can take several years to locate the fraudster and many times they won’t have the money for a refund. Unfortunately the scammers do not comes in Bishop’s’ robes, so be very careful who you deal with.
Property ownership is still the best form of investment anyone can hope for. One Will Rogers said ‘Real Estate is the best investment in the world because it is the only thing we are not making anymore’.
So what is holding you from getting in touch with us to conduct your property searches and prepare your deeds? Give Sisi a call today 07062882332
I aim to make legal ease of your transactions