• Thu. Sep 21st, 2023

UGANDA, Gomba | Real Muloodi News | In a moment of celebration, 400 residents across four villages in Gomba District received news that the government had reached an agreement with their landlord, enabling them to settle on their bibanja (plots of land).

The 714-acre land, on Block 209 covering plots 431, 333, 315, and 307, encompasses the villages of Nkwale, Kasaka, Kitemu, and Kkome-Nsaasi.

Lands Minister Judith Nabakooba announced that the former landlord, Mr Peter Wasswa, has been fully compensated by the government, and plans for land surveying are now in progress.

During her address to the affected residents, Minister Nabakooba confirmed that the government had paid off Mr Wasswa, although the exact amount was not disclosed.

The Uganda Land Commission (ULC) now holds full control of the land, and surveyors will soon be deployed to measure and mark the boundaries.

Minister Nabakooba emphasised that the government covered all the expenses associated with the process, including free-of-charge surveying.

Residents will only be required to pay Busuulu, the nominal annual ground rent, and a registration fee of UGX 25,000 to obtain a Tax Identification Number (TIN).

Residents, such as Mr WilberForce Rwamiti, expressed their relief and gratitude for the resolution. Mr Rwamiti’s house was destroyed during the land dispute, and he had been renting a room in Kanoni Town with his family.

He joyfully exclaimed, “I am now happy that my land is going to revert to me.”

Minister Nabakooba assured the beneficiaries that the land map would be displayed in each village, providing information about owners, land size, and locations.

Local leaders were urged to mobilise, monitor, and supervise the surveying process.

Land disputes have been a recurring issue in many districts. The government proposed land reforms in 2021 to address the problem of land grabbing.

Lands Minister Nabakooba has recently warned landlords against evicting tenants, reminding them of the provisions in the Land Amendment Act of 2010, which allows tenants to resist eviction if they have been paying Busuulu.

Eviction requires a court order and prior notification, although compliance with these conditions is not always followed.

Local leaders, including Mr Yusuf Kironde, the Kitemu Village chairperson, acknowledged the challenges faced by residents during the land wrangles that began in 2018.

He noted that some residents had reached agreements with Mr Wasswa, who had purchased their bibanja and promised them land titles.

However, those who had already sold their bibanja to Mr Wasswa will not benefit from the current resolution.

Mr Joel Kyajja Baduuzi, the chairperson of Kanoni Town Council, praised Minister Nabakooba’s efforts in resolving the issue.


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