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15.12.2004 Business & Finance

AUF challenges intended sale of properties by UNILEVER

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Kumasi, Dec. 15, GNA - The Asante United Front (AUF) has challenged the intended sale of properties on the Kumasi Part One lands by UNILEVER Ghana Limited through Property Investment Consultants (PIC), its Estate Agents.

AUF named the properties as Property No.KNR/ne, Kingway on Plot No.72 at Adum, Property No.SNR One comprising SAT plots Nos. One. Two, Three, 10, 11 and 12 at Kejetia and other 29 buildings within the Kumasi Metropolis.

A statement issued in Kumasi on Wednesday and signed by Opanin Kwame Afreh, Chairman of AUF said, UNILEVER had five years more term of ownership during which it can develop the property.

The statement noted that UNILEVER had made a proposal for a further 50 years to enable it sell the property and give the lessor (land owner) 25 per cent of the proceeds.

The statement said UNILEVER had no right to sell these properties because the leases covering their ownership had long expired and that the proposal for a further 50 years extension for a reward of 25 per cent was unreasonable.

UNILEVER, Opanin Afreh said should rather leave the scene if it had no redevelopment programme for the rest of its ownership period for serious investors to develop these sites for the benefit of Asanteman and Ghana as a whole.

The statement pointed out that, all Kumasi Part One lands belong to the Golden Stool and therefore, properties inherent on these lands should by logic be returned to the Asantehene on the expiration of their leases.

"Under this circumstances, the sale of the said properties should have the consent and approval of the Asantehene".

The statement cautioned that, UNILEVER should not be given any preferential treatment by way of granting extension of ownership of property when G.B. Olivant and P.Z. had long left the scene after the expiration of the authority of ownership of their properties.

It warned the public to be careful about any intended purchases of such properties, since the properties being put up for sale had by law a legitimate owner in the person of the Asantehene.

The statement appealed to the Asanteman Council to ensure that all such properties remained its properties and also asked the government to consider reverting all Kumasi Part One lands and looted property to Asanteman.

By law, all such property must be reverted to the landowners as stipulated in the agreement documents on the said property, which Afreh claims are available to him. Afreh said various agreement documents covering all foreign owned properties on Part one lands have long expired.

The Statement said parent agents of these properties in Britain are aware that the authority of ownership no longer existed, because the valid period of their ownership has expired and that it would be unlawful for UNILEVER to decide to dispose off these properties without the express approval of the Asantehene.

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