Gulu University has failed to develop seven of its prime pieces of
land due to lack of land titles.
This has affected expansion of the university and opened room for squatters
to encroach on the land.
In 2002, the University unveiled a master plan for 742 acres of land but the
plans remained on paper because of lack ownership documents, hampering the
implementation of the intended plans.
The prime plots include the current eight acres of the District Farm Institute
– DFI land which was inherited in 2002 by the University and Gulu District
Local Government, which is yet to transfer the land title to the University.
It also includes the 12.8 acres of National Forestry Authority –
NFA land located in Forest Ward in Laroo Division pending gazettement. The land
is where new Library; Multi-functional Research Science Lab and Faculty of
Agriculture and Environment and Faculty of Medicine were constructed.
Khalid Mohamoud, the Assistant University Public Relations Officer explains
that the expansion of the University was first obstructed by politicians that
incited landowners around the University not to vacate their land.
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The University also acquired 100 acres of land in Nwoya district.
The land has also not been developed and its land title for proper ownership
has not yet been processed.
Gulu University Planner, Emmanuel Wesonga, says the review of the
old master plan to suit the current land acquired by the entity has also been
difficult because of lack of land titles for the existing land.
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According to Khalid, the University Management is engaging the
district authorities to degazette the available pieces of land given to the
University for expansion to allow for implementation of the master plans.
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When the University was established, the community of Akonyi-bedo
village in Unyama Sub-County in Gulu district also donated several acres of
vast open and redundant land located behind Sir Samuel Baker School.
The University also was given 100 acres of land by elders of Okidi
parish in Labongo Amida Sub-County, Kitgum district pending relevant
documents before any development can be sanctioned on the land.
During the financial year 2017/2018, the University approved a
budget of 39.6 billion shillings, but a total of 40.6 billion was released by
the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development.
However, the Auditor-General’s report for 2017/2018 faulted the
University for failing to implement all planned activities like drawing a
master plan for the seven pieces of land; rehabilitation of Dean of Students
Block, Planning Block and Academic Registrars Block.
Ochola's journalism career begun from Radio King 90.2 FM in Gulu around 2009, and Radio Rupiny 95.7 Fm under Vision Group in 2012. He also reported for Mighty Fire 91.5 Fm, Kitgum in 2015 before joining Wizarts Foundation in 2017.
He has been reporting for Uganda Radio Network (URN) since 2017 before being posted as Bureau Chief Kitgum, and latr Gulu between 2018 - 2021. Currently, he reports from Parliament.