UGANDA, Kampala | Real Muloodi News | The High Court, Land Division in Kampala, has determined that once 12 years have passed since the government acquired a piece of land, a petitioner cannot file a lawsuit to reclaim the land.
Section 5 of the Limitation Act provides that no legal action may be launched by any individual to reclaim land after the passing of 12 years from the date on which the right of action accrued to him or her, according to Justice Bernard Namanya of the High Court, Land Division.
The judgement was made as a result of a lawsuit filed by Ms Joanita Nyanzi, the late Semei Nyanzi’s estate (the plaintiff), against the Attorney General and former Foreign Affairs Minister Sam Kutesa.
Plot No. 19 Akii-Bua Road, formerly known as Plot No. 19 Stanley Road, was the subject of her request for land recovery.
“The plaintiff’s cause of action either for compensation and or for recovery of land arose in 1984 when the government compulsorily acquired the suit land. The plaintiff waited for 31 years to bring the instant case, rendering the case time-barred under the law,” ruled Justice Namanya.
The land in question, according to Ms Nyanzi, was allegedly the target of a forced government acquisition in 1984, when Semei was living in exile in the United Kingdom, where he later passed away.
The judge said that the land was compulsorily seized by the government for public use under the Uganda Gazette Notice of July 11, 1984.
He continued by saying that the late Max Choudry, Minister of Lands, Minerals, and Water Resources, was responsible for issuing the gazette notice.
The case’s cause of action, according to Mr George Kalemera, a commissioner from the AG’s chambers, emerged in 1984, but the complaint wasn’t submitted until 2015, which is much longer than the advised 12-year waiting period.
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