Minister Kamya Re-echoes warning against Land evictions during Lockdown
The ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development has registered 1,514 land related complaints on evictions mostly in the districts of Sembabule, Masindi, Masaka, Kampala, Kyenjojo, Mubende, Luwero, Namutumba, Waskiso, Tororo, Mukono, Kassanda, Amuru, Abim, Kayunga Pallisa, Kazo, Kyangwali, Mpigi, and Kyegegwa.
According to minister Betty Kamya, despite the Ministry’s earlier directives on land evictions during this period of Covid-19, evictions have continued to take place and this came up during a stakeholder inter-ministerial meeting to review issues on Wednesday, by the State House Anti-Corruption Unit that they
“I therefore want to issue another directive to the Land Management institutions under my docket which include: Ministry Zonal Offices, District Land Offices, District Land Boards, District Physical Planning Committees Area Land Committees and Lower Physical Planning Committees” the minister warned.
Minister Kamya says that as per the Presidential Directive, no one should be evicted from their bibanja or the land they are in possession of during the current COVID 19 lockdown period, for any reason including non-payment of Ground rent; No land transactions (Searches, transfers, subdivisions, Caveats, assessment and payment of Stamp duty) are being handled by any Land office during this COVID 19 period, until the quarantine is lifted;
She added that all Court Orders on evictions, whether issued before or during this period must not be enforced until after the COVID 19 quarantine is lifted, all Ministry Zonal Offices (MZOs) still remain closed until when the directive is lifted.
Those with complaints must be addressed and brought to the Ministry headquarters or submitted through the Ministry online contacts found at www.mlhud.go.ug. Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development and the Judiciary have prepared eviction guidelines to be followed during eviction. The said guidelines shall be availed to the public the lifting of the quarantine. Some of the guidelines include:
“All lawful and bonafide occupants to be evicted only for non-payment of annual ground rent; Sufficient notice must be issued together with a valid Court Order which shall have been cleared by the IGP” she noted.
Adding that the time to carry out an eviction will be from 8 am to 6 pm and no eviction shall be carried out on a weekend, during Court vacation or on public holiday.