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Public confuses govt land acquisition with land grabbing- Bamugemereire

By Andante Okanya

Added 1st November 2019 03:25 PM

Bamugemereire made the observation during an engagement symposium organised for government ministries, departments, and agencies(MDAs).

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Justice Bamugemereire. File Photo

Bamugemereire made the observation during an engagement symposium organised for government ministries, departments, and agencies(MDAs).

 
Land probe commission chairperson Justice Catherine Bamugemereire has observed that the public confuses government land acquisition with land grabbing.
 
Bamugemereire made the observation during an engagement symposium organised for government ministries, departments, and agencies(MDAs).
 
She advised that as government project executors, it is incumbent upon them to debunk the misperception, by regularly interacting with the potential project affected persons(PAPs).
 
Land acquisition in Uganda is stipulated in Article 26, the Land Acquisition Act Cap226 and the Land Act Cap 227.
 
The glaring feature of these provisions is that the government may acquire land for public use subject to payment of fair and adequate compensation before taking control of the land.
 
Bamugemereire emphasised that regular information and feedback are paramount so that when a project commences, the PAPs embrace it.
 
The Justice of the Court of Appeal/Constitutional Court said such a move would save the government the burden of compensating both the contractor and the PAPs, for project delay commencement. 
 
“Whenever people think of land acquisition by the government, they think of land grabbing. This land grabbing is the excessive use of political, religious, economic, legal force to take the land,” said Bamugemereire.
 
In attendance were Uganda National Roads Authority(UNRA) executive director Allen Kagina and Managing director Uganda Electricity Distribution Company Limited(UEDCL) Paul Mwesigwa.
 
Also present were Project manager East African Crude Oil Project(EACOP) Eng. Kasingye Kyamugambi, and Deputy managing director(MD) National Water and Sewerage Corporation(NWSC) Eng. Johnson Amayo, and economist Dr. Fred Muhumuza.
 
The probe team present included lead counsel Ebert Byenkya, commissioners Frederick Ruhindi(former Attorney General), Mary Ochan, Robert Ssebunnya, Joyce Habaasa, and George Bagonza.
 
The symposium was conducted under the theme ‘Exploring Experiences, Challenges, and Recommendations of MDAs on Land Acquisition in Uganda’.

 

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