• Sun. Jun 26th, 2022

UGANDA, Wakiso | Real Muloodi NewsBusinessman Hamis Kiggundu, the Director of Ham Enterprises Uganda Limited, has appealed to the Katikkiro of Buganda, Charles Peter Mayiga, to make changes at the Buganda Land Board (BLB) due to alleged fraudulent dealings by some BLB officials.

BLB is the corporate body that runs Buganda Kingdom’s land.

“I humbly appeal to the Katikkiro to pick interest in this matter and institute reforms before these people tarnish the image of the Kingdom,” Kiggundu said.

Hamis Kiggundu made this appeal after the resurrection of the 140-acre Kigo land dispute he has with the BLB.

Buganda Land Board officials had petitioned the Commissioner Land Registration to cancel Kiggundu’s titles, accusing the real estate muloodi of overlapping Kabaka’s mailo with freehold titles which Kiham’s lawyers contended with.

The Ministry of Land later called a meeting to discuss this ongoing Kigo land conflict between Kiggundu and the Buganda Land Board.

Through his lawyers led by Fred Muwema of Muwema & Company Advocates, Kiggundu emphasised that he is the rightful owner of the land, which he legally obtained from the Wakiso District Land Board.

“I acquired the said land from Wakiso District Land Board on public titled land tenure and I was given titles. BLB’s claim is on mailo tenure then why is BLB opposed to boundary opening to simply draw a line between public land and mailo land? I proposed to make a joint survey but Buganda Land Board was hesitant. I can’t stand to be seen as fighting with Buganda,” Kiggundu said.

He also said that it is impossible to obtain a freehold title on Kabaka’s land.

Land Location, Boundaries and Size

Kiggundu’s lawyers say that the land in question extends inwards and shares common boundaries with Serena-Kigo, Mirembe Villas and the lake. The usable acreage is 78.086 acres, while 15.236 acres have access roads.

The lawyers further defend their client that Kiggundu’s land is public land and that the Wakiso District Land Board issued the land titles with an acreage of 241.56 acres on plot 237200, Block 273, and there are only 95.34 acres on the ground.

“The talk about freehold titles overlapping mailo must have begun after Buganda Land Board applied to amend the boundaries of Block 273 during the creation of a lease in favour of Serena on plot 23042. That explains why Serena holds land under two tenure systems on Mailo land, 37.30 acres and former public land – 95.34 acres currently owned by our client. We maintain that our client’s titles do not overlap Kabaka’s mailo,” counsel Muwema explained.

Is There a Need to Investigate Buganda Land Board?

Kiggundu has also cleared the air that he didn’t want to have issues with the Kabaka because he highly respects and loves him and cannot fight the Buganda Kingdom. 

However, now that he knows who is trying to steal his land, he can say something about the issue.

Kiggundu said there are officials at the BLB using the Kabaka’s name to grab the Kingdom’s land and that of the ordinary people.

“These people are using the power of their offices to grab land belonging to Buganda and Baganda,” he said.

“They have also tried to grab my land by claiming that I connived with officers at Wakiso District Land Board to grab the Kabaka’s land in Kigo. They have done this through blackmail, threats and character assassination in the media. As a Muganda, I cannot differ from the aspirations of Buganda or even fight with my king. It’s the people I am talking about who are the problem,” he added.

Hamis Kiggundu Exposes Masterminds Behind Buganda Land Conflicts

While at the Lands Ministry, before the Karuhanga’s Tribunal, Hamis Kiggundu named those who he claims steal land through Buganda Land Board, including Bashir Juma Kizito, Head of Corporate Affairs, Operations and Business Development at Buganda Land Board.

Kizito allegedly doubly works as Wakiso District staff surveyor, Head of Surveying and Mapping at Buganda Land Board and also BLB’s legal counsel.

Because the survey report on which the BLB authorities based their argument against Kiham Enterprises was not dated, Kiggundu recruited a private surveyor, William Matovu, to do another survey and write a report. Kiggundu delivered the report to the registrar, and its contents contradicted BLB’s.

He appealed to the registrar not to rely on the evidence proved by Kizito, BLB’s legal counsel because he has a conflict of interest in the case.

Ham’s lawyers said: “Our contention is that there is an actual conflict of interest in the duties of Bashir Kizito Juma, acting both as a public officer and a private officer of the complainant.”

They added, “This type of conduct by Bashir Kizito Juma is against the Code of Conduct and Ethics of Public Service issued under the Public Standing Orders 2010.”

This type of conduct is punishable by law backed by Section 4.6 (i) of the said Code which states that “In the execution of official government business, a public officer shall not put himself or herself in a position where his or her personal interest conflicts with his/her duties and responsibilities as a public officer.”

They further said: “He writes reports for Mengo, verifies and approves them at the district. You can’t author and verify your reports.”

They indicated that conflict of interest is a serious offence in Uganda, particularly when a public servant works for a private organisation whose operations clash with his official obligations.

According to the Kiham lawyers, the absurdity is that even the freehold titles Kiggundu obtained were issued by the Wakiso District Land, which employs Bashir Kizito Juma, making him both a witness and the architect of the complaint. In other words, Kizito can sway the outcome of the issue before the tribunal, both for and against any party.

This plainly contradicts his official duty as a public officer, and it is prohibited to do so, making the complaint illegal as well.

Kiggundu’s lawyers say that in this case, Kizito’s survey report is incompetent and inaccurate.

Kiham has further called for the prosecution of Buganda Land Board (BLB) officials led by Bashir Kizito Juma over conflict of interest.

“This tribunal can therefore not entertain this conflict of public officers to pursue a conflicted complaint which derogates all best practices in public law. In our considered view, entertaining this complaint as presently filed is to perpetuate illegality and a constitutionally prohibited act,” the lawyers stated.

Kiggundu also mentioned a lady called Rema, who allegedly connived with other people to sell off 320 acres of Kabaka’s land in Kigo to some Chinese.

He also mentioned Dennis Bugaya, who he called a thief. He said that Bugaya does all the legal forgery, the ‘malice, blackmail and sabotage’ in the media about anyone who comes out to fight for their land rights.

Another gentleman he exposed was Kabogoza, who sits in Mengo and allegedly signs all the forged paperwork to seal the land deals.

Kiggundu’s Proposals

Hamis Kiggundu proposed a joint boundary opening exercise for both the freehold land titles and private mailo to verify the location of both properties because they are separate, and not overlapping one another.

Referring to Kizito, Kiggundu said it is unbecoming for someone to have that much power in land matters. He called on the Inspector General of Government to look into the matter between the private and public sectors.

Kizito’s Legal Standing

Kiggundu’s claims raised eyebrows against Buganda Land Board Surveyor, Bashir Juma Kizito.

In violation of Public Standing Orders, 2010, which leads to a Crime Punishable in Uganda under Section 9, Act 6 of the Anti-Corruption Act 2009, Kizito has been positioned to face prosecution for breach of ethics in his duties, in which he pairs as a civil servant, operating as the Wakiso District Staff Surveyor and a Private Officer at Buganda Land Board and at the same time serving as the Head of Mapping and Survey.

  1. Conflict of Interest

(1) An employee, or a member of a public body, public company or public undertaking who, in the course of his or her official duties, deals with a matter in which he or she or his or her immediate family has a direct or indirect interest or is in a position to influence the matter directly or indirectly and he or she knowingly, fails to disclose the nature of that interest and votes or participates in the proceedings of that body, company or undertaking, commits an offence and is liable on conviction to a term of imprisonment not exceeding twelve years or a fine not exceeding five thousand currency points or both.

(2) Conflict of interest shall arise where the person referred to in subsection (1):

(a) deals with a matter in which he or she has a personal interest and where he or she is in a position to influence the matter directly or indirectly, in the course of his or her official duties;

(b) holds a position with or gives services to a person or a private body which is or is in conflict with his or her official duties;

(c) participates in the deliberations of a public body, board, council, commission or committee, of which he or she is a member at any meeting at which any matter in which he or she has a personal interest is to be discussed; or

(d) attends a meeting of a public body, board, council, commission or committee and fails or neglects to disclose the nature and extent of his or her interest.

(3) “Personal interest” in this section includes the personal interest of a spouse, child, dependant, agent, or business associate of which the person knows or would have had knowledge if he or she has exercised due diligence having regard to all the circumstances.

Karuhanga Tribunal was expected to announce his team’s judgment last week.

READ MORE LIKE THIS:

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Hamis Kiggundu Walks Away from Kigo Land to Avoid Confrontation with Kabaka

Ham’s Kiham Enterprises Offers Proof of Kigo Land Ownership, while UNRA Abandons the Tycoon

Hamis Kiggundu Clashes with Kabaka Over Land in Kigo