So you intend on buying or you just bought a new piece of land in Cameroon. You are happy about achieving a major feat in life; after all it costs a lot of money to buy a piece of land, given that land is very expensive. The question is, are you quite sure about the real owner of the land in question? Are you sure you are not the second or third owner to lay claim to that piece of land?
The double dealing phenomenon is rampant in major areas such as Yaounde and Douala and has now gained smaller towns like Kumba, Limbe, Buea and Bamenda. It is now common to see two or three individuals brandishing the same documents of owning the same piece of land.
I know this case of a friend who bought a piece of land from one of the chiefs in a village at the outskirt of Limbe. One day he went to look at his plot and he found somebody else had deposited sand at the location ready for construction. On further inquiry he found out that it was the chief’s younger brother who sold the same plot he had bought to this other party. It led to a quarrel that was later resolved by the chief himself.
How then can you protect yourself from fraudulent deals?
1)Always ask the neighbors around the land you are about to buy who really owns it. Most often they would know the real owner of the land.
2) Try to meet the Chief of the area or any other authority and ask about the land. Insist that the Chief should be a witness during the land signing agreement.
3)Make sure you put a pillar as soon as possible.
4) Start developing the land immediately. Have somebody cultivate it, build a small structure there or at least throw sand on the land.