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Jinja central division chairman under probe over public land

By Edward Anyoli

Added 17th April 2019 02:33 PM

According to the evidence presented before the commission, Kirunda has been cited in sale of public land which hosts a major national sewer line in Jinja.

Jinja central division chairman under probe over public land

The commission of inquiry is chaired by Court of Appeal Justice Catherine Bamugemereire (File photo)

According to the evidence presented before the commission, Kirunda has been cited in sale of public land which hosts a major national sewer line in Jinja.

LAND PROBE

Jinja central division chairman Mubarak Kirunda, has come under the spotlight after it emerged that he facilitated construction of a mosque along the railway line.

Commissioner Fredrick Ruhindi put it to Kirunda that the commission was aware of his mischievous plans of land fraud involving the giveaway of public land.

Ruhinidi, questioned Kirunda saying he constructed the mosque because it is in an area where the multi-billion-shilling Standard Gauge Railway is expected is to be built as part of the new transport corridor linking Uganda with her neighbours of Tanzania and Kenya.

 Kirunda is accused of being part of those who acquired land where government intended projects would pass hoping to sell it back to the government at a profit.

Kirunda is also at the centre of   controversy for allegedly giving away public land to a businessman Bashir Yusuf without consulting the district land board.

According to  the evidence presented before the commission, Kirunda has been cited in sale of public land which hosts a major national sewer line in Jinja.

Kirunda denies

Kirunda denied claims that he fronted businessman Bashir Yusuf to the Jinja area land committee and district land board to take over Karibu Karibu market.

He testified before the commission chaired by Justice Catherine Bamaugemereire that plans to allocate the land was done by the area land committee without his involvement

Kirunda said he took all the necessary steps to stop the allocation, but he failed adding that the necessary documentation process had been done.

On the issue of the mosque, Kirunda said there was need to construct a mosque in the area, but denied claims that it was constructed with the view of getting huge compensation from the government.

Commission fact file

On December 8, 2016, President Yoweri Museveni appointed a seven-member commission of inquiry chaired by Court of Appeal, Justice Catherine Bamugemereire, to inquire into land matters.

This was prompted by several documented instances of public outcry. The team took oath on February 19, 2017, with mandate to inquire into the effectiveness of law, policies and processes of land acquisition, land administration, land management and land registration.

Subsequently, public hearings commenced on May 9, 2017 at National Archives and Records Centre in the city suburb of Nakasero.

On November 10, 2017, the President extended the probe's mandate for  six months. Last year on May 4, 2018, Museveni endorsed an 18-month extension of the probe.

The probe commissioners are Frederick Ruhindi, Dr Rose Nakayi, Mary Ochan, Robert Ssebunnya, Joyce Habaasa, and George Bagonza.

Deputy lead counsel is John Bosco Suuza, while Andrew Odiit is assistant lead counsel.

Dr Douglas Singiza is commission secretary, while Daniel Rutiba is deputy secretary.

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