A Nigerian estate surveyor and valuer, based in the United States (USA) and USA certified appraiser, Ejike Okpa, has called for proper compensation of land owners, particularly those in the Niger Delta region whose land are used for oil explorations.
He said that the present Land Use Act does not favour communities whose land are used for oil exploration without adequate compensation, and wants the mineral rights to go back to the communities that suffer the effect of oil exploration activities.
Making this known while delivering a paper at the Mandatory Continuing Professional Development (MCPD) programme for 2012 organised by the Nigerian Institution of Estate Surveyor and Valuers (NIESV) Rivers State branch, Mr. Okpa who is a graduate of the Rivers State University of Science and Technology (RSUST) and a professional valuer said that what gives the oil companies power to operate in Nigeria is the constitution.
He challenged the royal fathers in the Niger Delta and the political class to wake up and lobby the National Assembly for a change, adding that the valuers and lawyers can work in harmony to have a credible report.
While noting that the US economy is driven by the real estate up to about 70 percent, Ejike also urged the state Houses of Assembly in the Niger Delta to come up with laws and lobby the National Assembly for constitutional amendment.
Three other papers were presented by Dr (Mrs.) I.B. Kakolo who is the head of estate management in RSUST, Dr. N.B. Nuhu of the F.U.T Minna and Gabs Oforma who is also a Fellow of the institution.
The chairman of the occasion, who is also the chairman of the NIESV Rivers State, Mr. Emma Wike in his speech earlier said the theme for the MCPD 2012 which is “Valuation in the Oil and Gas” was chosen because issues of acquisition and compensation have been challenges in both private and public sector, and urged members to follow the law, since compensation valuation is a statutory one.