UGANDA, Kampala | Real Muloodi News | Judith Nabakooba, Lands, Housing and Urban Development Minister, has said the amendment of the Lands Act is still ongoing. Necessary consultations are underway with agencies and other stakeholders.
In a series of recent meetings, Nabakooba, together with stakeholders, have discussed possible solutions to land issues. After one such meeting, government announced plans to adopt a more effective express land transfer system to increase the mortgage turnover rates.
“We talked about the need to reorganize our registries, strengthen, automate them and be able to function better, but also focus on timelines to avoid complaints,” Nabakooba said.
Nabakooba went on to say, “There are several laws including the land act, the real estate law, physical planning law, and also other policies that we have discussed.”
Another item on the reforms agenda are plans to introduce taxation of idle land, to encourage landowners to develop the resource.
She further noted that reforms are still in discussion. However, there is still a long way to go before the approval of any amendments. Nabakooba commented that “Of course the amendment of the Land Acts is not yet done. The technical people are still doing their work, and once they are done, they will have to take us through the proposed amendments, and we shall give our input.”
The amendments will be worked on with the office of the Attorney General, the parliamentary counsel as well as other agencies in charge of relevant laws. Different stakeholders will be consulted and considered before moving forward.
While the government believes the amendments will solve land disputes, a section of the public worry that people might lose their land, especially those on Mailo tenure. However, Nabakooba has reassured that the amendments are all in “good faith,” and that no law will be taken to parliament without consultations.
She also emphasized that the reforms have been in development for quite some time. There are misunderstandings due to the broad nature of the topic. Still, after the amendments are presented to the cabinet and finalised, the government aims to inform and educate the public about the revisions.
She further added “One thing we are first tracking is the report of Commission of inquiry into land matters by Justice Bamugemereire. We want to at least have that report presented before the cabinet, ask them to put up a committee that can work on white paper,” she stressed.
The President appointed Justice Catherine Bamugemereire to chair the Commission of Inquiry into the effectiveness of the law, policies, land acquisition processes, land administration, land management, and land registration in Uganda. The commission will present the report to the cabinet before moving on with the documentation and written procedures.
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