Boundary Commission urges states to enforce resolutions on boundary disputes - Paul Ukpabio's Blog


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Sunday, 30 May 2021

Boundary Commission urges states to enforce resolutions on boundary disputes

The National Boundary Commission (NBC) has appealed to various state governments to demonstrate the political will to enforce resolutions on boundary disputes affecting their states.

The Director-General of the Commission, Mr Adamu Adaji, made the appeal at the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) forum in Abuja.

He said that enforcement of resolutions on boundary disputes was critical in supporting the commission to achieve its mandate and resolve as many disputes as possible.

Adaji expressed concern that there was scarcely any state in the country which had not been involved in boundary dispute with its neighbour; many resulting into killings, maiming and wanton destruction of property.

He, therefore, solicited increased cooperation from the state governments in resolving some of the emerging boundary issues in the country.

According to him, sometimes some states don’t cooperate as at due in following up actions on agreements.

“Sometimes the states will lack the political will to even enforce some of these decisions taken.

“For political reasons, you find some states dancing to the tunes of their communities in trying to align with their resistance to some of our resolutions on boundaries.

“We have had courses to tell some states that these boundaries we are handling are not boundaries between community A and B of the two states, it is between state A and B.

“The interstate boundary is a creation of the Federal Government and wherever it is put, so be it.

“For some of the states to align with the communities to slow down the pace of our work by their not holding to some of our agreements or respecting the agreements as at when due is a challenge,’’ he said.

Adaji further emphasised the need for state governments and local government authorities to set up boundary committees that would complement the efforts of the commission.

“It is a challenge that some of the states have not constituted some of the boundary committees as spelt out in the act establishing the National Boundary Commission.

“These committees are supposed to be on ground, interface with the communities and assemble records, positions and papers from the communities which will form part of the submissions of the states.

“When these committees are not properly constituted or not even constituted at all, you find out they do not complement our efforts as expected.’’

While expressing the commission’s commitment to resolve boundary disputes in the country, Adaji pointed out that most boundary descriptions were ambiguous.

According to him, these are vague descriptions that are subject to manipulations and argumentation by the affected communities and states.

“Some of these discrepancies in the inscriptions we inherited and some of the maps we have are also not quite legible and clear.

“So, in such cases we intend to also supplement with our principle. We use the instrument where it is possible to use and we bring in the communities to cooperate and let us get a harmonised boundary that we can also translate,’’ Adaji said.

He stressed that the commission would remain transparent in carrying out its duties, describing an efficient boundary resolution mechanism as a potent tool for national security.

“If you are mediating between two parties, the tendency is that the losing party will want to cast aspersions and castigate you of taking sides.

“Our work is done transparently and we try to bring in the states and the communities.

“Any state that wants to purposely slowdown the pace of our work, we will go ahead and get our works done if they refuse to participate as expected,’’ Adaji said. 


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