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Nigerian surveyors lament use of obsolete maps

Existence of obsolete maps and total absence of large-scale maps in Nigeria is generating a lot of concern among professional surveyors, who said the absence has hindered physical development of the country over the years.

Permanent secretary in the Federal Ministry of Housing and Urban Development, John Alkali, expressed this concern at Enugu in a keynote address he delivered at the opening ceremony of the enlightenment programme for heads of cadastral survey units and other stakeholders.

“It is worrisome that our maps are obsolete if available,” he lamented, adding, “large scale survey plans and maps, which are required for planning and development are inadequate.”

Alkali further said “it is correct to say Nigeria is grossly under-mapped, save for part of the Niger Delta, where maps were procured by the multi-national oil companies.”

He told the gathering of professionals that without cadasrtral surveying and mapping, physical development, especially in housing delivery would not be well administered to maximise the desirable benefit thereof.

The permanent secretary said that the ministry was already carrying out the presidential mandate to map out all state capitals and major towns in the country.

To facilitate the execution of the project, he disclosed that the ministry had procured “a state of the art equipment” for the cadastral survey unit and plans to acquire more of such equipment for the six geo-political survey centres in the country, adding that the ministry was collaborating with the National Space Research and Development Agency for the acquisition of submitter satellite imageries to further facilitate the large scale mapping of the country.

Earlier in his address, Director of Lands and Housing, Mr. Jet Ikedianya, noted that land administration is made easy when up to date cadastral survey plan and large-scale maps are available.