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Land tenure system in Nigeria

How do you go about owning a land in Nigeria? In Nigeria, there are various land tenure systems that vary from the villages, towns or cities. The idea behind land tenure system in Nigeria is to regulate land ownership behaviours in the country. There are various forms of land tenure systems in Nigeria ranging from communal ownership, inheritance tenure system, leasehold tenure system, rent tenure system, gift tenure system, freehold tenure system and tenant at government will.

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Communal Land Tenure System

This system promotes the community as the governing power of the land. The head of the community decides the basis for land sharing or ownership. Communal land tenure system encourages large scale farming but cannot be used as collateral for a loan.

Inheritance Tenure System

This system, land ownership is transferred at the death of the main owner to the next of kin. This system provides for children yet unborn but sometimes land allocation may lead to conflicts among beneficiaries and other family members.

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Leasehold Tenure System

This is an ownership of a temporary right to hold land in which a tenant holds rights to the land by some form of title from a landlord. This system allows for permanent crop cultivation depending on the lease period but it cannot serve as security for loans.

Gift Tenure System

This is a system of land ownership in which rights to a piece of land is voluntarily given out by the owner to another person.  It can be used to source for a loan from financial institutions by the new owner although the land ownership can be revoked by a court order.

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Rent Tenure System

This is a system whereby a tenant pays some amount for the period of using the land to a stated landlord. The period of rent is relatively very short compared to leasehold systems. Although this system discourages long-term plan on the part of the tenant.

Freehold Tenure System

This is a system whereby a person pays a certain sum of money for the right of ownership of a piece of land. Under this system, land can be used as collateral for the loan but the purchase of these lands under this system is expensive.

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Tenants at Government Will

This system is where land is given out to farmers by the Federal Government of Nigeria. The land is cheap to acquire although the land cannot be used as collateral for the loan .

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