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Rationalising the basis for utilization of compulsorily acquired property in Ghana: Issues arising

Dowuona-Hammond, Christine
Land use policy 2019 v.81 pp. 546-552
governance, land use, population growth, urbanization, Ghana
This paper discusses the evolution, current status and future prospects of the governance framework on compulsory acquisition in Ghana with particular emphasis on the scope of the state’s prerogative to determine the purpose for which compulsorily acquired lands may be utilized. The paper examines how the concept of public interest has been interpreted and applied in assessing the utilization of compulsorily acquired lands against the background of expanding developmental and infrastructural needs, the state’s evolving role in economic development, increasing pressure on land resulting from rapid population growth and urbanization; and drastic changes in land use and demand in recent times. The paper comments on the judicial interpretation of the governance framework on compulsory acquisition in the 1992 Constitution and examines the legislative proposals on the utilization of acquired lands made in the Land Bill, which is currently under consideration by Parliament prior to enactment. Some recommendations are offered toward the achievement of a more balanced approach to the determination of legitimate uses of compulsorily acquired lands in Ghana based on the constitutional governance framework on compulsory acquisition.