The Adhoc Committee of
parliament, which has been investigating the distribution of 82.05 acres of
Nakawa-Naguru land has recommended the retirement of the Uganda Land
Commission-ULC commissioners in the public interest.
The affected commissioners include the
Chairperson, Byenkya Nyakaisiki, Prof. Pen-Mogi Nyeko, Asuman Kyafu, Stella
Achan, Augustine Rukiika Rujara, Charles Muhoozi, Tom Kasenge Byamugisha
and Medina Nsereko as members.
The Uganda Public Service
Standing Orders provide for the retirement of public officers in the public
In this case, the appointing authority asks the affected officer to
relinquish his or her office as a disciplinary measure, which doesn’t merit
dismissal. The officer is entitled to retirement benefits in accordance with
the Pensions Act. The Committee has also recommended that the ULC
Secretary, Barbara Imaryo, and the Commissioners be held accountable for
irregularities surrounding the allocation of the land.
Trouble for the commission officials started in January
2022, when they revised earlier allocations of land at Nakawa-Naguru. They went
ahead to allocate 15 acres to the Internal Medicine of Virginia, 10 acres to
Uganda Heart Institute, 3.09 acres to KCCA Nakawa Division offices, 1 acre to
Naguru Infant Primary School, 1.05 acres to St. Peters Church of Uganda, 2
acres to Ntinda Whole Sellers 2 acres and others.
Anil Damani got 3 acres, Seven Hills Apartments
4 acres, Arab Oil Supplies, and Exploration Limited 4 acres, Dashen (U) Limited
3 acres, Dembe Enterprises Limited 3 acres, Dominion Partners Limited 1 acre,
EACOM International Limited 1 acre, and Rudra Hardware 4 acres among others.
However, the speaker of parliament, Anita Among set up an
Adhoc committee to investigate the re-allocation exercise when complaints
emerged about the exercise. On Wednesday, the committee chairperson, Dan
Kimosho presented the committee findings to Parliament indicating that ULC
commenced the reallocation process based on three categories namely presidential
directives, ministerial directives, third parties with development, and residual
land for fresh applicants.
He also noted that the ULC came up with specific criteria
that would be followed by the applicants for the land. These involved proof of
legal existence of the company or partnership, particulars of directors, annual
audited accounts, experience in handling similar projects, governance of
company structures, business plan for the development of the land, proof of tax
compliance, proof of source of funding and submission of support documentation
for the applications.
the report notes that “The committee observed
that ULC did not follow its own set criteria in allocating the Naguru land. The
documents from some of the applicants reviewed did not comply with the set
parameters.” The none complaints companies, which benefited from the
reallocation exercise according to Kimosho included Internal Medicine of
Virginia PC, Phaneroo Ministries, Arab Oil Supplies and Exploration, and Master
Links Uganda Ltd.
Parliament also learnt that Phaneroo Ministries has no experience
in handling similar projects and no proof of source of funding and that it's a
company limited by guarantee and not permitted to do business. Phaneroo Ministries also lacks proof of tax compliance.
The committee also revealed that Internal Medicine of Virginia PC never
interacted with the ULC as required, lacks offer letters, forwarding letters
from ULC, audited accounts, proof of ability to execute similar projects, and known address among other requirements.
The committee report also noted that Arab Oil Supplies and
Exploration and Master Links Uganda Ltd have no experience in handling similar
projects, proof of source of funding, proof of tax compliance, and audited accounts. Kimosho said that due to influence peddling,
certificates of title were issued to these beneficiaries despite the obvious
non-compliance to the set parameters. He said that with these findings,
it is clear that the actions of ULC in allocating and issuing certificates of
title contravened the set criteria.
//Cue in: “the certificates of…
Cue out:…no justifiable reason,”//
During the debate on the report, Robert
Wandwasi, the Bungokho South MP supported the committee's recommendation to
retire the ULC commissioners in the public interest, saying that this would help
safeguard public land.
//Cue in: “it is terribly…
Cue out:…in our country,”//
Susan Amero, the Amuria Woman MP commended the
committee for the report, saying that its recommendations are patriotic, and
appealed for their implementation. The Speaker of Parliament, Anita Among said that the
committee findings are conclusive enough and that government will be required
to provide a treasury memorandum on action taken within two months.
//Cue in: “honorable members we…
Cue out:…in two months.”//
Earlier in the day legislators on the Committee on Commissions, Statutory Authority, and State Enterprises–COSASE also called for the disbandment of the Uganda Land Commission– ULC over the swelling burden of improprieties. The committee is investigating allegations of fraud, abuse of office, and negligence by the commission that have caused financial loss to the government.