Hoima District Authorities Probe Contentious Land Titles

2439 Views Hoima, Uganda

In short
Currently, more than 1000 residents of Rwamutonga in Bugambe Sub County are homeless after being evicted from the land claimed by Hoima businessman Joshua Tibagwa. Another 50,000 residents in Munteme parish, Kiziranfumbi Sub County are facing eviction from a 1000 acres piece of land claimed by Prince Hebert Kimera.

Hoima District Council is examining a number of land titles whose acquisition was queried as authorities seek to resolve overwhelming land wrangles in the district.


Currently, more than 1000 residents of Rwamutonga in Bugambe Sub County are homeless after being evicted from the land claimed by Hoima businessman Joshua Tibagwa.  Another 50,000 residents in Munteme parish, Kiziranfumbi Sub County are facing eviction from a 1000 acres piece of land claimed by Prince Hebert Kimera.

Evictees in Bugambe claim that Joshua Tibagwa acquired the 103 hectare chunk of land and acquired the land titles for the land which was already occupied. The matter is already in court and a ruling is still awaited. 


Records at the office of the Resident District Commissioner indicate that more than ten cases of land disputes are reported on a weekly basis in Hoima.

James Mugenyi Mulindambura, the chairperson production and natural resources committee which was tasked by council to investigate the matter says some land titles were issued for customary land, while others were acquired in areas with settlers.


The Kigorobya district councilor says his team is up to unearth details into how such land titles were  acquired and adds that some of them would be cancelled if they are found to have been fraudulently acquired.

 
//Cue in: "The increasing…
Cue out: ….are encroachers."//
 
Mulindambura says his committee is already scrutinizing two controversial titles; one for a plot in Kijungu, Hoima Municipality and the other in Kiryambonga, Buseruka Sub County.  He explains that while in Hoima Municipality, one land title was offered to two people, in Kiryamboga a local construction firm was offered a land title in community land.


But Mulindambura reveals that preliminary findings indicate that the title at the Kijungu plot was issued in error.

//Cue in: "We are investigating….
  Cue out: …..for investigation."//
 
The committee chairperson explains that the committee has already engaged the lands officials and would meet the affected parties before making their report to council.

At the time of filing the story this reporter could not get a comment from the district lands office. Sephatia Mboneraho, the Hoima district land board chairman was not in office at the time and could not pick repeated phone calls by our reporter.


In his address to a recent district council meeting George Tinkamanyire Bagonza, the Hoima district chairman said the rampant land wrangles coupled with evictions remain a social burden which must be jointly solved by all stakeholders.

The district boss accused area land committees of being ignorant of their work, saying this has aggravated land problems in the district .Bagonza stressed need for sensitization  seminars for area land officials re-orient them on their role.