The Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) has urged the public to disregard claims by the Ghana National Association of Garages (GNAG) that they own the Sempe Stool Land located at New Weija in Accra.
According to SSNIT, they are the lawful owner of the land, thus the Light Industrial Estates, managed by the Ghana Industrial and Commercial Estate Limited (GICEL), is a subsidiary of SSNIT.
In a statement issued by SSNIT, the Government, per Executive Instrument (E.I.1) gazetted on 19th January, 1996 compulsorily acquired the Sempe Stool lands at New Weija, as a site for the Light Industrial Estates.
“SSNIT paid One Billion, Four Hundred and Twenty-Nine Million, Four Hundred and Twenty-Eight Thousand Cedis (¢1,429,428,000.00) in 1998 as compensation to the Sempe Chiefs for the land, thus making it the lawful owner of the land,” the statement said.
They said, subsequently, SSNIT set up a subsidiary known as GICEL as one of its investee companies to manage the Light Industrial Estates that the Trust had assumed lawful ownership of.
They added that the Lands Commission, which was the body mandated by law to deal with lands, allocated the land to GICEL and the lease was paid for by the Trust and subsequently registered in the name of GICEL at the Commission.
The statement said the Lands Commission also executed a deed document in respect of the Estates in the name of GICEL, and that the deed document had a site plan attached, demarcating the boundaries of GICEL’s land.
The GNAG, per a Writ of Summons dated 13th February 2018, took SSNIT and GICEL to Court claiming ownership of the Estates.
The Trust said per a judgment dated 21st October 2020, the High Court, Accra (Human Rights Division), dismissed all GNAG’s claims with respect to ownership of the Estates, adding that the Court further ordered members of GNAG to vacate the premises on or before 31st December 2020.
“GICEL is the legal owner of the GICEL Land and the High Court, Accra also made this pronouncement in its decision on 21st October, 2020, that is, the case the Ghana National Association of Garages (GNAG) initiated against SSNIT and GICEL,” it said.
“GICEL has been managing and exercising rights of ownership and possession over the said Estates for years by renting out parts to artisans, among other users. We urge members of the public to disregard the claims of GNAG or any other group or association concerning the Estates.”
Meanwhile, the GNAG has filed a Notice of Appeal after losing the case in the High Court.