Alhaji Inusah Fuseini, Minister of Lands and Natural Resources has tasked the newly reconstituted board for the Northern Regional Lands Commission to work extra hard to settle all land disputes and protect state lands from encroachment.

?I am reliably informed that encroachment on public acquired lands is on the increase in the region and if this phenomenon is not checked, the execution of public projects by the government may be derailed,? he said.

Alhaji Fuseini made the appeal in Tamale on Friday when he inaugurated a newly reconstituted board for the Northern Region Lands Commission, tasked with the responsibility to administer public lands and lands invested in the President as well as to advise government, assemblies and traditional authorities on policy framework for development of particular areas.

Alhaji Alhassan Sumaila chairs the 33-member board, which has a four-year term to serve.

Alhaji Fuseini advised traditional authorities in the region to desist from selling large tracts of lands involving several thousands of hectares to prospective investors purported to be used for agro-forestry adding, ?We all support investors in the region but we must kick against those who deliberately acquire large tracts of land for future use?.

?While government does not want to frustrate the private sector from contributing its quota to national development, it cannot acquiesce to the current practice, which could fuel land grabbing and lead to landlessness?, he explained.

He said there was also evidence of multiple land sale in the Tamale Metropolis, which had contributed to the growing number of land disputes and advised the newly inaugurated board to partner with the Customary land Owners under the Land Administration Project II to address the problem of indeterminate boundaries.

Alhaji A.B.A Fuseini, Deputy Northern Regional Minister assured investors that the Northern Region was safe haven for investment and that the Northern Regional Security Committee was in charge to ensure that every citizen was safe.

He said the few miscreants who wanted to make the Metropolis ungovernable would be dealt with appropriately, and advised other potential trouble makers to desist from such acts.

He commended the board members for being gender sensitive by allowing some women to serve on it and expressed the hope that all land related disputes would be settled before their tenure of office.

Alhaji Alhassan Sumaila, Chairman of the board pledged to work assiduously than before to ensure that all land related disputes were solved.

He appealed to the Northern Regional Security Council (NREGSEC) to consider incorporating Lands Commission into the committee to ensure that NREGSEC was always properly briefed on land related matters.

Caption for pictures:

0334, 0338: These are the new Board of Directors swearing into office during the inauguration of the Northern regional Lands Commission in Tamale.

0349: Alhaji Inusah Fuseini, (right) Minister of Lands and Natural Resource presenting certificate to Mr Ismaila Alhassan, (left) Chairman of Board of Directors of the Lands Commission. GNA

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