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Mark frowns at land fraud in Abuja

05 March 2014, 21:31

Abuja - Senate President, David Mark on Tuesday frowned at the rate fraud was being perpetrated in the FCT Land Administration, describing it as a source of worry to the government.

Mark, who was represented by Senate Leader, Victor Egba spoke at the commissioning of the New Abuja Geographic Information Systems Infrastructure (AGIS) in Abuja.

He said that the fraud ranged from double allocation, fake Right of Occupancy papers, violation of the digital security system to abuse of the master plan.

The senate president recalled that the FCT had experienced boundary disputes fuelled mostly by the absence of cutting edge geospatial equipment to properly delineate, monitor and secure boundaries.

He said that the new (AGIS) infrastructure would enable owners of landed properties in the territory have access to genuine papers, while they were busy with other issues.

"I am sure that what FCT Administration is doing through AGIS, is to lay the infrastructure for improved service delivery to the people.

"We are therefore looking forward to honest, efficient and improved services from the new AGIS," he said.

Mark said that National Assembly would back up with essential legislative intervention to strengthen the operation of the system.

Earlier, Bala Mohammed, Minister of FCT stressed the need for complete overhaul of the system after a comprehensive audit of the system.

"There is the need for a total overhauling of the AGIS digital infrastructure to ascertain its compliance with current trends in the industry.

"We found out that the business process was slow and there was need for us to regain momentum in the number of products and services needed to be delivered.

"The administration was worried over incessant reports of proliferation of illegal survey documents, violation of the IT systems by fraudulent persons, leading to cases of double allocations, land racketeering and forgery.

"A recent estimate had put the racketeering business at over N10 billion," he said.

The minister said that the AGIS system upgrade include, system hardware, infrastructure, equipment and configuration.

Others are back up data centre and state of the art 2013/ 2014 models geometrical satellite imagery equipment that covers FCT and some neighbouring states.

Mohammed further listed others to include CCTV installation/security; software and applications upgrade as well as installation of fire systems.

In her welcome address, Jemilah Tangaza, the Executive Director, AGIS said that since the inception of AGIS in September 2003, there has not been any hardware systems upgrade.

Tangaza noted that most of the computer servers, workstations and peripherals had exceeded their life-spans resulting in impaired, erratic and inefficient operations, whilst leaving the system open to abuse and misuse.

"The system upgrade has provided an opportunity for the AGIS to avert the possibility of a complete system shut down.

"It will also avert catastrophic loss of data occasioned by failed computer servers, and prevalence of sharp and fraudulent incidents," she said.

-  NAN

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