National
SDA Church in court over disputed landPublish Date: Feb 21, 2014
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By Hillary Nsambu                         

The Court of Appeal has given lawyers representing the Seventh Day Adventist Church and its member Jacob Mutabazi up to March 6 to hand in their final submissions over ownership of a protracted land law suit.


Mutabazi, a Ugandan national living in Norway, sued the SDA Church, seeking to recover a piece of land which his late father Enock Mwambali, left for his children.

He says the church converted the four- acre land to its own use.

But the High Court dismissed the suit against the church, which prompted Mutabazi, who is also a member of the church, to appeal.

Now the lawyers of the two sides have been given until March 6 to deliver their submissions.

Justice Remmy Kasule said: “As agreed by both parties, the lawyers representing the parties are hereby directed to make written final submissions, which they should serve each other and put on the court record by March 6, 2014.”

He continued: “Then, thereafter, the court will deliver its verdict on a date to be communicated to both parties as soon as it is ready,”

Justice Kasule, who chaired the coram, also directed the lawyers to exchange their submissions promptly to avoid any undue delay. The other members were Justices Solome Balungi-Bbosa and Geoffrey Kiryabwire.

Mutabazi had told the trial court that his father, who was serving as one of the ushers in the church, owned the land in question independent of the church’s land that was adjacent to his and that he is buried there.

He told court that his father died intestate and mysteriously at Mulago referral hospital and was buried somewhere on the land, but that he could not find his grave anywhere and that the church could not offer an explanation to its whereabouts.

Mutabazi further said that despite the High Court having visited the disputed land, there are no proceedings on the court record. 

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