UNSOLVED ESCALATING LAND PROBLEM IN BASSE


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By Alhagie F.S. Sora

Mamudou Jallow, Ismaila Jeng and Lamin Cham all residents of Basse in the Upper River Region (URR) have expressed their frustration and concern over what they described as re-allocation of their lands to others by the administrators of land.

They said that they have valid documentation which was given to them by the Alkalo (village head) of Koba Kunda, Mr. Samba Jawo. Mamudou Jallow one of the complainants said he bought eleven empty plots from Alkalo Jawo.

He said the Alkalo told him that the Physical Planning Department has taken possession of the land where one Saidou Jallow is erecting a structure in one of his plots. He said Saidou informed him that the plot was allocated to him by Physical Planning Department.

Ismaila Jeng and Lamin Cham expressed similar sentiments: “Our lands were re-allocated to others by Physical Planning Unit in Basse.” The Alkalo confirmed the story, adding that the land was re-allocated by the Regional Physical Planning Unit in Basse.

He added that out of the 79 plots for Koba Kunda, 12 plots were allocated to Omar Khan the former Governor of URR for the use of Civil Servants. He said the governor gave some plots to his drivers, cooks and other staff.

In his reaction to the allegations, Mr. Mafugie Hydara head of the Physical Planning Unit, Basse said his department did not take any land from the complainants.

He said higher authorities authorised them to demarcate the area after a new road law was enforced in the area. Mafugie did not state what this enforced new road law is, but revealed that after demarcating the said area 104 plots were allocated to Basse Manneh Kunda and 79 plots were allocated to Koba Kunda.

He added that out of the 79 plots for Koba Kunda, 12 plots were allocated to Omar Khan the former Governor of URR for the use of Civil Servants. He said the governor gave some plots to his drivers, cooks and other staff.

He further said that out of the 104 plots allocated to Manneh Kunda some were allocated to Physical Planning staff, but could not tell how many. “Allocation criteria depend on application, saying in URR it is the higher authorities who send a list to him to give out lands,” the Basse Physical Planning boss said. He said all National Assembly members and some area council staff were allocated with a plot of land at the new area.

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