Jonathan Grants Abuja Golf Course C of O
by ThisDay Newspaper
The federal government gave members of IBB Golf and International Golf Club a surprise Independence Day package after President Goodluck Jonathan granted the board of trustees of the club the Certificate of Occupancy over the country’s prime golf destination.
The presidential gift was announced by Minister of FCT, Senator Bala Mohammed, who represented Jonathan at the closing ceremony to mark the Independence Day Tournament at IBB International Golf and Country Club, Abuja.
Mohammed said that a premium amounting to N500m on the entire golf estate had been waived and the certificate of occupancy was ready for collection.
According to Mohammed, the C of O that that will give Board of Trustees legal authority on the parkland 18-hole course would be issued once the procedural guidelines were completed.
Jonathan had first gifted the club the Certificate of Occupancy in October 2010, after paying a surprise visit to club during Nigeria’s 50th Independence Day activities.
The board of trustees is headed by former Defence Minister, Gen. Domkat Bali (rtd) who is now the traditional ruler of the Taroh land of Plateau State.
But in the intervening years, both the IBB Club and the Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA) which built the course in 1991 could not agree on the exact interpretation of President Jonathan’s order.
The FCDA had imposed a huge premium of over N300m on the trustees as the value of the C of O and later limited the power of the club to Rights of Occupancy which was power to chart developmental and profit yielding initiatives.
The course located in Nigeria’s Three Arms Zone, was built by government to provide the new capital city with a world-class golf course for recreational activities.
But its maintenance is through money generated by membership fees and annual subscriptions from existing members.