The Mamman Vatsa Writers Village popularly called Writers Village located at Mpape, Maitama extension of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) was donated to the Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA) in 1985 by late Maj.-Gen. Mamman Vatsa, then Minister of the FCT Abuja and a proud member of the association.
Before now, the land remained undeveloped for a long time. What is left today of the original 61.20 hectares is about 36.9 hectares with chunk of it taken up by desperate land grabbers and poachers.
The plan, according to the association, was to have in the Writers Village residential apartments and space for other future developments. The site was planned to house the National Headquarters of the ANA, a library, chalet for writers, a hotel and conference halls.
Those projects had been on the drawing board since 1985 when the land was allocated to the association. The proposed site of the Writers Village has endured long-drawn struggle between ANA and a succession of land grabbers.
Daily Trust took a trip to the Mpape hills in Abuja, an extension of the Maitama districts where the Writers Village land is seated. Our reporter observed that construction and allied development activities have begun to surface at the site after a very long time.
One of the engineers on site who pleaded anonymity told our reporter that the Mamman Vatsa Writers Village actually belongs to the ANA.
He said most of the work going on in the site was being controlled by ANA although there were different developers at the site including individuals who have their own properties under the Writers Village.
The engineer explained that structures from one-to-five bedroom duplexes were being constructed by different developers after the land is bought from ANA.
“The land has its approval plan signed by the Federal Capital Development Authority (FCDA),” he said.
He explained that the Writers Village is divided into two phases.
“From the stream down to the hill belongs to a developer named Kachef Constructions Company. They gave the company a piece of land to develop for ANA including putting in place infrastructure to provide the estate with good road network, drainage systems, electricity, and water supply.”
The engineer also explained that he has been working on the site for a very long time adding that he is aware of the real story behind the estate’s scandal.
“I am the first engineer to have laid a foundation inside this estate. The land was almost taken over by the Federal Government during Goodluck’s regime and that was why people were thinking the land belongs to Patience Jonathan but the honest truth is that this land is not owned by the government but by the Association of Nigerian Authors in memory of late Mamman Vatsa,” he said.
“None of the document of this land carries the name of patience Jonathan so that is a pure rumour.
Giving a bit of background to the land, the National President of ANA Malam Denja Abdullahi said the land was undeveloped for many years and as a result of that land grabbers entered into it to claim ownership and defraud unsuspecting members of the public.
“Those things happened in the past and when we discovered it, we drove all those trespassers away, some of them took us to court but their claims were thrown away.
“We have the C of O to that land. Currently we are developing the land through development arrangement we have with the developer and construction is on. As far as we are concerned there is nothing like controversy over the ownership of that land, it belongs to ANA”
Also, our reporter spoke to a lady on the site who introduced herself as the secretary of Korliemobs, a construction company being hired by ANA to put in place the structures in the estate. She said that there was building plan approval from the Abuja Metropolitan Management Council and the Department of Development Control for all the kind of building they are putting up.
The secretary said they started work last year on the land.
A Deputy Director in the Department of Development Control confirmed that the said land has a building plan and a building approval.
The Coordinator Abuja Metropolitan Management Council AMMC, Umar Shuibu couldn’t be reached to confirm the state of the land.