Mengo warns district land boards on kingdom land

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Buganda has aised officials managing district land boards in the kingdom to stop issuing leases on land recently returned by the central government, saying any transactions carried out are illegal and liable for cancellation. In a press statement last week, Buganda Land Board chief executive officer Kyewalabye Male, said the board assumed full powers effective August 1, 2013 to manage all properties that central government had confiscated from Buganda in 1966 and districts currently have no mandate to sale or issue leases. The properties which the kingdom wants to manage include estates for the Katikkiro, Omuwanika, Omulamuzi, Namasole, Lubuga, County chiefs and all sub-county land in urban centres in Buganda.“any transaction carried on these mentioned properties after 31 July, 2013 in special reference to issuance of leases, extensions or even sales are deemed illegal and liable to cancellation,” the statement reads in part.“The public is cautioned of an eminent and likely loss of their money with no recourse for refund,” It adds.

stronWay forwardstronHowever, Kyewalabye aised individuals who already hold titles on such land to report to Buganda Land Board (BLB) offices in their localities to have their titles regularised.BLB is the business arm of Buganda which was instated in 1993 to manage part of the assets returned to the Kabaka under the Traditional Rulers Restitution of Assets Properties Act 1993. BLB contributes at least Shs7b to Mengo every year through collection of rent and granting of leases.Mr James Wandira, the district chairperson Nakasongola, one of the 25 districts in Buganda, said the districts have no powers over the land since all titles were returned to Mengo. “They [Buganda]have not written to us formally about that matter, but what I know is that, since government returned titles to Buganda there is no way districts can issue leases on titled land. It is impossible,” he said.BLB wrote to all district leaders in Buganda on July 3, 2014 informing them about the operationalisation of the MoU President Museveni signed with Mengo.

assenkabirwa@ug.nationmedia.com

SOURCE: Daily Monitor

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