This is the second primary form of land title, which exists under the land use Act. The Land Use Act does not make any positive provision as to the ownership of right of occupancy. But, it does not inferentially or in a negative way by wholly and exclusively vesting the maximal title to land in the Governor under S.1 and then going on in SS.5 and 6, and in SS.34 and 36 respectively, to limit a “right of occupancy”, the right which the Governor or local
government can grant in land to any person or organization or which any person or organization – whether individual, family, community, corporation or otherwise can own land; all that they can have is a right of occupancy which, if granted by the Governor anywhere in the state in called a statutory right of occupancy, and if granted by the local government or raised by reason of customary user or occupation under S.36 is called a customary right of occupancy.

After a critical examination of the Land Use Act, it appears that the only interest created under the Act in favour of a man who has interest in land is the right of occupancy.
However, SS.5 and 6 of the Act empowered the Governor and the Local Government to grant statutory and customary rights of occupancy respectively. Also S.8 provides that the statutory right of occupancy granted under S.5 (1) (a) shall be for a definite time and may be granted subject to the terms of any conduct which may be made by the Governor and the holder not being inconsistent with the provisions of the Act, but there is no such requirement for a customary right of occupancy. S.10 provides for certain condition and provisions in the certificate of occupancy upon grant of statutory right of occupancy as evidence of such grant to the holder of the right of occupancy.
Again, SS.34 and 36 of the Act provide for deemed right of occupancy by recognizing the existence of right of ownership before the land use act, 2978. It follows that a customary right of occupancy, whether granted or already being used or occupied, must be used or must have been used in accordance with customary law, either by the individual, group or family. Thus, S.24 of the Act deals specifically with devolution of right of occupancy upon one’s death. Also, S.29 (1) deals with compensation payable on revocation of right of occupancy by the governor in certain cases. And S.35 (1) deals on compensation for improvement in certain cases and recognizes various units of ownership before the Act. Hence, it implies that a customary right of occupancy as defined “in the real sense” predates the Act, as it is not the subject of a grant, because of the use of the phrase “and includes a customary right of occupancy granted.”
Based on the above discussion, the following forms of right of occupancy are discernable under the present legal regime viz:-
I.          Formal statutory right of occupancy granted under S.5
II.         Formal customary right of occupancy granted under S.6
III.       Deemed statutory right of occupancy granted under S.34
IV.       Deemed customary right of occupancy granted under S.36
Share on Google Plus


The publications and/or documents on this website are provided for general information purposes only. Your use of any of these sample documents is subjected to your own decision NB: Join our Social Media Network on Google Plus | Facebook | Twitter | Linkedin