Obaseki Signs CDA Bill Into Law, Meets With Oba Ewuare II

 

GOVERNOR Godwin Obaseki of Edo State has signed into law, the bill prohibiting forceful and illegal occupation of landed property by Community Development Associations, CDAs, in the state.

Shortly after signing the bill into law, the governor proceeded to the palace of the Oba of Benin, Oba Ewuare II, to present a copy of the law to him.

Oba Ewuare II had in his coronation speech, decried the bloodshed in communities perpetrated by land grabbers under the guise of CDAs, and vowed to move for a law that will decisively deal with such people and ban the CDAs in the communities. S

peaker of the state House of Assembly, Justin Okonoboh, who was with the governor during the signing of the bill into law, explained that the new law, apart from prohibiting CDA activities in the state, also prohibits forceful entry into people’s landed property and protecting widows’ rights to their husbands’ property.

CDA Law: Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State (right), presenting the CDA Law to Oba Ewuare II (left), at Oba’s Palace, Benin City, shortly after he passed the bill into law.

At his meeting with the Oba, Obaseki described the law as historic, adding that it would make the state more receptive to investors and set it on course for more development.

He said: “My administration believes that the way to sustainable development is to unleash and nurture our productive energies and those of investors. Investment will not thrive in a lawless environment. It is a thing of pride that we signed this bill into law.”

On his part, Oba Ewuare II said the new law signified a major milestone in the Obaseki-led administration and commended the governor and the state House of Assembly for the speedy passage of the Bill into law.

“I want to say that today is historical and I am overwhelmed. I was really upset with the activities of CDAs in the state. I saw the need to tackle the issue of CDAs as their actions became destructive. The governor bought in the idea and decided to draft a bill to criminalise their activities. I want to commend him for this step as many people expressed doubts about his willingness to work with the palace, but he has dispelled such fears,” he said.

He commended the Oba for his support in making the law a reality. “Our land tenure system before and during the colonial era was rated as the best, but it had been turned around by some nefarious activities of CDAs. It was therefore, a thing of joy during your coronation that you undertook the task to pull down the CDA structure.”

Obaseki urged the Chief Justice of the state and security agencies to support implementation of law in the state, adding that a task force chaired by a Inspector General of Police, Mr Solomon Arase had been constituted to drive the enforcement of the law and supervise all matters related to the law.

On his part, Oba Ewuare II said the new law signified a major milestone in the Obaseki-led administration and commended the governor and the state House of Assembly for the speedy passage of the Bill into law.

“I want to say that today is historical and I am overwhelmed. I was really upset with the activities of CDAs in the state. I saw the need to tackle the issue of CDAs as their actions became destructive. The governor bought in the idea and decided to draft a bill to criminalise their activities. I want to commend him for this step as many people expressed doubts about his willingness to work with the palace, but he has dispelled such fears,” he said.

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