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Kabaka wants sh8b from govt

By Vision Reporter

Added 11th May 2008 03:00 AM

TAXPAYERS could pay sh8.3b to Kabaka Ronald Mutebi II if a case he intends to bring against the Government succeeds.
The Baganda cultural leader contends the money accumulated in ground rent and premium for the Kigo Prison land.

TAXPAYERS could pay sh8.3b to Kabaka Ronald Mutebi II if a case he intends to bring against the Government succeeds.
The Baganda cultural leader contends the money accumulated in ground rent and premium for the Kigo Prison land.

By Josephine Maseruka

TAXPAYERS could pay sh8.3b to Kabaka Ronald Mutebi II if a case he intends to bring against the Government succeeds.
The Baganda cultural leader contends the money accumulated in ground rent and premium for the Kigo Prison land.

Through the Buganda Land Board, Kabaka Mutebi has instructed Sekabojja and Company Advocates to serve the attorney general (chief government legal advisor), with a notice of intention to sue within 45 days if no agreeable settlement is reached.

Sekabojja delivered the notice on April 17. The attorney general acknowledged receipt of the letter on the same day, according to a stamped document The New Vision has seen. The notice expires at the beginning of June.

The controversy arises from the Government’s continued occupation of 328.6 acres housing Kigo Prison and farm on Kyadondo Block 273, plot 38. The property was returned to the Kabaka in August 1993 under the Traditional Rulers Restitution of Properties and Assets Act 1993.

The prison was built in 1952. Mutebi’s father, Sir Edward Muteesa II, later bought off the tenants.

“Since August 1993, the Uganda Government which is occupying and utilising the said farm and prison has not paid ground rent and premium,” read the notice.

The Kabaka is demanding sh8,308,163,000 as ground rent and premium out of which sh6.9b is for lease charges of the premium and sh460m for a 15-year lease from August 1, 1993.

The total amount was arrived at by valuers based on the undeveloped value of the land and the buildings.
The notice added that although the chairman of the Uganda Land Commission and the institution occupying and/or using the land were notified, they had ignored requests.

The Kabaka avers that as a result, he has suffered financial loss. He is seeking to recover the money, general damages and costs of the suit.

Mengo had entered into a joint deal with Shotts, a Canadian company to construct a multi-million dollar leisure centre and executive hotel on the Kigo land. Shotts was to invest $60m (sh10b).

President Museveni had allowed Mengo to take part of the prison land that used to be a shooting range, for the project, but Shotts insisted on relocating the prison before starting work.

The prison accommodates about 600 hard-core criminals besides a primary school, staff quarters and a Police marine unit.

In 2006, Museveni appointed Prime Minister Prof. Apollo Nsibambi to head a committee to find the best way of handing over the land to Mengo.

Kabaka wants sh8b from govt

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