LIS modernisation in Gombe State, Nigeria

LIS modernisation in Gombe State, Nigeria


Pindiga, A. M.
Department of Surveying and Geoinformatics,
Federal Polytechnic,
Bauchi, Nigeria

Orisakwe, K. U.
Department of Surveying and Geoinformatics,
Modibbo Adama University of Technology,
Yola, Nigeria

Land is human’s natural heritage but access to land is controlled by ownership patterns. In addition, Landuse is crucial for economic, social, political and environmental advancements. Hence, administrators, resource planners and policy makers need digital land information, which ensures detailed and well-structured land information.

A Land Information System (LIS) is a computerised tool for legal, administrative and economic decision making. It is indeed an aid for planning and development and consists of a structured database with spatial referenced land related attribute and spatial data for a defined area and of procedures and techniques for the systematic collection, updating, processing and distribution of the data to provide solution to land management problems (Pindiga, 2012).

Tumpure residential and commercial layout (LP/GM/5) in Akko Local Government Area (LGA) in Gombe State, Nigeria, is a relatively new layout design that was created in order to accommodate the fast-growing population and demand for land both in the administrative and commercial centres of Gombe State.

Area of study
Tumpure (the study area) is a layout in Akko LGA of Gombe State, see figures 1, 2 and 3 below for details. It is about five kilometres west of the city centre of Gombe metropolis. The land mass has an area of approximately 128 hectares and bounded by the following Universal Transverse Mercator (UTM) coordinates (Point 1)730811.61 E; 1136284.60 N, Point 2 730811.61 E; 1138485.12 N, Point 3 732626.54 E; 1138485.12 N and Point 4 is 732626.54 E, 1136284.60 N. It is on relatively flat terrain surrounded by isolated hills.

Ministry of Lands and Survey, Gombe State, is responsible for land records and their updates. There are limited numbers of qualified staff. On the other hand, dealing with the gradually increasing land records in form of paper, was proving tough. Such circumstances led to several problems:

  1. Double allocation of a single plot to two or more individuals.
  2. Overlapping of plots when charted on master sheets.
  3. Difficulty/Inconsistency in obtaining information about land
  4. Non-payment of rents due to lack of up-to-date information about the owner.
  5. Existence of more than one base map for plotting of new or processed applications.
  6. Poor land record keeping.
  7. Duplication of efforts.

Most Nigerian states have robust multipurpose cadastral system. They have gone digital and Gombe State cannot be an exception. Pindiga (2011) observed that the fuel, driving the engine of growth and sustainable development of any state or nation, is a reliable and up-to-date geoinformation.

The effective and efficient operation of a nation’s cadastral system is an integral part of sustainable development. In recent years, cadastral systems have been influenced by the introduction of the geoinformation scene through the development of the multipurpose cadastre concept. The concept is expected to benefit all levels of government and society. Increased sharing of datasets, public transactions of data and reduction of administrative costs are a few of the benefits foreseen. Orisakwe (2011) observed that cadastre since inception has been a manually maintained and operated land records system that served a single purpose of revenue generation. Dale and McLaughlin (1988) advocated for the establishment and operation of a multi-purpose cadastre. Potdar (2010) identified three types of cadastre as:

  1. Tax Cadastre
  2. Real Cadastre
  3. Legal Cdastre

He further suggested a method of their integration through legislations as an act of law. Olaleye (1998) observed in Ezeigbo (1998) eds that complexities associated with modern land transactions need integrated approach and system. Ezeigbo et al (1998) further noted that population expansion and increased commercial activities are among the complexities of modern land administration which has made landuse become more intense and complex while competition for specific tracts of land and for resource use have escalated. There is therefore a need for a modern, complete and up-to-date database to support land conveyance procedures which will furnish a basis for equitable taxation and provides the much needed information for resource management and environmental planning. This need can only be sustained by a robust multi-dimensional multipurpose cadastre.

In setting up a cadastral information system, Adeoye (1996) outlined two main issues to be considered as:

(1) Spatial component/Survey data describing the spatial disposition of the parcels in the real world cadastral maps.

(2) Non-spatial component describing details such as ownership details, tax valuables etc.

Adeoye (1996) used spatial database for the spatial components while Microstation Geographic for the non-spatial data. For customized query and report generation, the database was put in Oracle format. This approach earned him unlimited Cadastral Information System. A United States of American Committee in Geodesy in 1980 affirmed that conceptually a multipurpose cadastre is a framework of land records that supports continuous, readily available and comprehensive supply of up-to-date information associated with individual parcels of land. It is a multi-layer cadastre comprising (a) A Geodetic Reference framework (b) A base map (c) A Cadastral overlay (d) A unique identifying number assigned to each parcel € A series of land data files and (f) A database Management system (DBMS) in which different types of data are overlayed and integrated to provide comprehensive, complete and integrated solution to land management problems.

The committee further asserted by identifying the key determinants of a multipurpose cadastre through the answers to the following questions:

  • What is the status of the existing system?
  • What are the objectives of the users of the system?
  • What standards and procedures are required to meet the desired objectives of users?
  • What are the costs and benefits?

This study bore in mind these questions in designing the LIS in Tumpure while having the technical components of the multipurpose cadastre adequately provided. Moha et al (2003) in their Moroccan experience said that only where these technical components are adequately provided can the multipurpose cadastre eventually be expanded to a multipurpose Land-data system incorporating natural resource base and land-related socio-economic data. Moha (2003) went further to identify three different components of the multipurpose cadastre as:

  • The Juridical Cadastre
  • The National Cadastre
  • The National Land Registry

Jukka (2008) said that the main aim of multipurpose cadastre in Zanzibar was for poverty alleviation. This was also in line with the 7-point agenda of the Federal Government of Nigeria of which Land Reform was one. Therefore, to achieve the aim of establishing LIS for Tumpure the study set out with the following objectives:

  • Collecting information on the buildings (condition, units, and photographs).
  • Developing databases for revenue collection (rents, VAT, stamp duty etc).
  • Developing databases for effective development control.
  • Developing databases for conservation and maintenance of buildings.
  • Developing further the already operational database for monitoring of utility management.

Materials and methods
Developing a multipurpose cadastre involved the use of hardware, software and procedures in capturing, processing, analyzing, modelling and presenting geospatial data. Developing a multipurpose cadastre for Tumpure residential and commercial layout (LP/GM/5) in Akko Local Government Area of Gombe State was achieved through the conversion of the existing cadastral layout of the area. Satellite image of the area was also obtained and overlayed with the digitised parcel layer using a common reference coordinate system.

The attribute information was obtained through personal interviews, physical inspection and some were collected from the Ministry of Lands and Survey Gombe State. Also, as part of the attribute data, photographs and video shots were obtained of some of the existing structures in the area. These attribute data were used in creating a spatial database in a GIS implementation software called Arcview 3.2a. Analysis was performed on the database by raising several queries.

The normalisation method of relational data structure was used whereby all the information in the database were represented in the form of tables or relations.

Fig. 2: Showing a Simple Entity Relationship Diagram of the Conceptual Database (Adapted from Odedare 2004)


Table 1 A:Part of the Parcel Table

Table 1 B: Shows Complete Parcel Table with Common Field




The summarised graphical representation of the entire stages can be seen in the diagram of fig. (5).

Fig.5: Showing Cartographic model of the project methodology

Results and discussion

Fig.6: Georeferenced satellite image showing Tumpure layout

Fig. 7: Scanned Plan of Tumpure Layout in AutoCAD environment.

Fig. 8: Plan showing digitized features in their respective layers

Fig. 9: Plan showing the polygonized parcel layer

Fig.10: Shows photographs of existing buildings in the area of Study

Fig.11: Showing Soft Copy Plan of Tumpure Layout

Fig.12: Showing the Composite Plan of Tumpure Layout

Fig.13: Multimedia Spatial Database of Tumpure Layout

Fig.14: Plan of Overlay of Satellite image with the Layout Plan of Tumpure area

Fig. 15: Plan showing Combined query by Location and by Hotlink.

Fig.16: Showing query on all plots allocated for religious purposes

The study provided a comprehensive information on land in Tumpure and presented all information at the parcel level. It is built around a reliable and accurate spatial framework: base maps, a cadastral overlay linked to juridical and fiscal information generated through relevant offices, questionnaires, physical inspections and interviews. Hence it supports both the legal and fiscal purposes.

The study has also shown how computer technology has come to play a vital role in modifying and handling the onetime tedious and cumbersome manual method of land records keeping retrieval. It has also demonstrated the efficiency and efficacy of Land Information System. It is hereby recommended to governments and agencies involved in Land records systems and administration.


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