By Spy Uganda
Lands Minister Judith Nabakooba has cautioned landlords on plotting to rip off the government by selling its land that has no sitting tenants under the Land Fund.
Nabakooba made the remarks in Mityana District while ironing out land wrangles on October 15. She explained that the Land Fund aims at ensuring the security of tenure, and through it, the government has been able to give out land titles to different people.
“Government buys land for people to live free. Those selling land to the government should be genuine with clear documentation,” she said, noting that landlords should not use the fund to dupe the government.
The fund is a multi-purpose resource envelope envisaged to serve targeted beneficiaries, including tenants seeking to buy or own land, a government seeking to buy land for redistribution to bonafide occupants or resettlement of the landless, among others.
The minister’s visit to the area was prompted by complaints from residents of Kalungu-Bala, Banda Town Council and Butayunja Town Council, all in Mityana District.
”Government should expedite the process of issuing letters of administration when land owners pass on. This will help resolve ownership wrangles that confuse the tenants,” Nabakooba said.
The land in contention is in Busujju Block 129 plots 14, 15 & 43 located at Banda Town Council with roughly 348 acres. The land sits on three mailo land titles with the above plots and they are all registered in the names of Abesiima Leticia.
She told the landlord that if he intends to sell the land, a transparent process where all people concerned are involved should be carried out.
“Open boundaries with the landlord in place. I want a report on this issue in two weeks. Those who bought where they are staying should be given their land titles,” Nabakooba said adding that part of the land the landlord wants to sell to the government has no occupants.
“Where we are now is kind of a trading centre. Plots he (the landlord) wants to sell were in a different area, let them sell land that has people on it if they intend to sell to the government. I have also asked him to issue titles to people that have paid to ascertain the legitimacy of the process,” she said.
In her second meeting convened at Butayunja Sub County by the LCV Chairman Livingstone, Lwanyaga locals expressed their worries about the surveying process of their bibanja that has been going on for quite some time.
The property in contention here is in Busujju Block 80 plot 40 & 45 land at Butayunja. It is occupied by over 600 households with its titles registered in the name of Lubinga Semindi.
The RDC not only gave Semindi permission to conduct a boundary opening exercise to be able to share the land amongst the beneficiaries but also sensitized the occupants on the exercise.
However, the occupants alleged that the beneficiaries instead acted otherwise and partitioned the land against their will, dictating on the portions to give them (occupants) without negotiations hence petitioning the minister.
Semindi, the landlord told the minister that they contracted Julius Muwanguzi to handle their land issues since people wanted to get their land titles hence the need for the surveying.
To her dismay, Nabakooba discovered that Muwanguzi is not a registered surveyor who she said, has no right to conduct business in that line since he lacks even the slightest of credibility to handle the titling process.
“All activities on this land should be stopped with immediate effect as we cross-check the records in the titling process. The status quo should be maintained and a commissioner’s caveat should be placed on this land immediately,” Nabakooba said, throwing the crowd in a cheer.
She gave the fact-finding process two months and warned Muwanguzi about forcefully surveying people’s lands.
“I am not satisfied with what is on the ground. Let us scrutinise them again. We have realised that unregistered surveyors were contracted to do the work. Also, the landlord talks of one square mile yet my records show 489 hectares,” she said.
Pictorial Of Nabakooba In Mityana