By Ivan Mwine
The Deputy Speaker of Parliament Rt. Hon. Anita Among has blamed the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development and the Uganda Land Commission for failing to sort the mess surrounding the wrangles over land in Naguru and Nakawa.
The land in question has been allocated to different investors by varying government agencies, something that sparked off a multiplicity of wrangles after some plots were allocated to the same developers.
Following the unending wrangles, the Deputy Speaker has since appointed a ad hoc committee to investigate the impasse surrounding the land and report their findings to Parliament within two weeks.
“I have noted with concern the fights related to the Naguru – Nakawa land. This highlights failure at the Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development and the Uganda Lands Commission,” Among told Parliament today.
She added that; “The land has been parceled and is being cleared without these conflicts being resolved. It is a shame. It is time that we embarked on our oversight mandate to root out these vices from the operation of Government departments and agencies.”
“I am therefore invoking rule 191 to nominate an Adhoc committee for approval by this House to investigate these matters and report to this House within two weeks,” Among resolved.
We have since established that the members on the Ad hoc Committee include;
1. Hon Dan Kimosho – NRM
2. Hon Dr Apea – NRM
3. Hon. Akol Athony – FDC
4. Hon. Aisha Kabanda – NUP
5. Hon. Basalirwa Asuman – JEEMA
6. Hon. Ebwalu Jonathan -Independent
7. Hon. Kateshumbwa Dickson- NRM
8. Hon. Opendi Sarah – NRM
9. Hon. Atukwasa Ritah – NRM
Over 1,750 families were in 2007 evicted from Nakawa-Naguru estates, on orders of the Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) after the government passed a resolution to allocate the land to investors known as Opec Prime Properties Limited, a UK-based construction firm.
The firm was to construct1,747 flats on the land and according to government, each tenant would be entitled to a self-contained apartment with three rooms on the flats that would be built.
However, OPEC Prime Properties later opted out of the deal, leaving the land lying vacant for years until government started allocating the land to other developers, which sparked off the current wrangles.
Before the demolition exercise started, KCCA and local government ministry officials began erecting a fence on the 66-hectare estate, which stands to date, although it has been vandalized in some areas.
Prior to the demolition, Naguru housing estate alone had 753 housing units, while Nakawa had 932 units.
Kampala City Council (KCC) now KCCA condemned the Nakawa-Naguru housing estates in 2001.
They had been earlier condemned in 1994 by the health ministry as unfit for human habitation.