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Lands Titles in Nigeria

Lands Titles in Nigeria and Their Meaning

Lands Titles in Nigeria and Their Meaning

Land titles in Nigeria cannot be underrated. Those who have taken it for granted have either lost money or found themselves in litigation. If you want to buy land without any hassle, it is important to find out what titles come with a particular property and always investigate before you invest.

Historically, the land belonged to the indigenous families living on the land but the Land use act, passed in 1978, makes all urban land within a state to be held by the governor on behalf of the people. Therefore, the governor is responsible for giving land to citizens and other organizations.

Listed below, are different land titles available and what they mean

1. Free or Under Acquisition

 A Land or property becomes free-hold where the government has not indicated any interest in.

While the land is said to be under government acquisition if the government has an interest in the area for the purpose of urban development or industrialization projects.

2. Global Acquisition or Committed Acquisition

The land under government acquisition can either be a global acquisition or a committed acquisition. The land with committed acquisition means the government has designated that parcel for a specific project as such those parcels of land can never be released to individuals or organizations for development projects. Acquiring lands that are under committed acquisition will eventually lead to the loss of such investments when the government moves to take full possession of such a parcel of land. Whereas land under global acquisition does not have a specific government purpose yet and as such those parcels of land can later be free or committed as the case may be.

There are 2 main processes for making land under global acquisition to be free.
  1. Excision
  2. Ratification

Recommended to read 7 land documents you must check

3. Excision And Gazette

To excise a land means to cut it. It’s a process where the government releases a parcel of land back to the indigenous owners of such lands for the purpose of residential and commercial developments. When this excised parcel of land is published in the government’s official gazette such land is said to have Gazette as its title. Excision and gazette are very good titles for a piece of land; such lands are safe to buy and develop. The gazette then becomes the title on the land and such land is safe to buy because a proper title can be processed on the land.

4. Certificate Of Occupancy

This is the most popular land title people are familiar with. It’s a good title. Lands with a Certificate of Occupancy (CofO) are exceptionally safe to invest in.  A Certificate of Occupancy (CofO)  is usually issued by the State Government and it connotes that the state government has officially leased the piece of land to the applicant, for 99 years.

5. Governor’s Consent

When a land with Certificate of Occupancy is sold to another person it is required that such a person must now obtain the Consent of the Governor before that transaction can be deemed legal in the eyes of the Government. As the name sounds, a governor’s consent means the governor consented to the transaction; the transfer of ownership of a parcel of land with a certificate of Occupancy from one person to the other.

6. Registered Deed of Assignment

A Deed of Assignment is an agreement between the owner and seller of the property and the buyer of the property showing that the seller has transferred all his rights, title interest and ownership to the buyer. Upon the exchange of the deed of assignment, and the registration of the document at the land registry, the land or property becomes completely and legally owned by the buyer of the property.

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