KAMPALA – The minister for the Presidency, Ms Esther Mbayo, has warned the Resident District Commissioners (RDCs) to keep off land matters in their areas of jurisdiction.
Speaking at opening of the induction training of the RDCs at the National Leadership Institute, Kyankwanzi on Wednesday, Ms Mbayo said the President’s representatives in the districts are not judges to take decisions in land conflicts.
“When it comes to the issues of land you are supposed to mediate. You are not supposed to be judges, but you continue judging. Are you supposed to make demarcations to the land? That should be left for the courts. We are here to make final touches. As you get there, we are appraising you and at the end of the day, the report will come out,” she said.
The Minister also said some RDCs have poor relations with the district chairpersons, chief administrative officers and councillors in districts, which she said affects their work.
“Last Monday, I was invited to make a presentation at ULGA [Uganda Local Government Association], but they commented badly about RDCs. The relationship between RDCs and the rest of the district officials is very bad. If the relationship between you and different people are not good, service delivery will be down. I don’t know why you continue to fight because your roles are clearly defined. I can defend you, but the defending has limits. Next time I will have to act,” Ms Mbayo said.
Ms Mbayo also said some RDCs spend a lot of time in Kampala instead of monitoring government programmes in their respective districts.
“Sometimes I come to your district and you are not there. How will you perform when you are not there? You are supposed to reside at your work stations, but you re only there for few days. I will move there quietly and that will be the basis for your appraisal and you know my appraisal report goes direct to the appointing authority,” she said.
She added: “Sometimes many of you are here loitering on the streets of Kampala and when we meet you pretend that you don’t know me, thinking that I don’t know you. I know all the RDCs in the country.”
Ms Mbayo said the as result of absenteeism, many RDCs prepare shallow quarterly reports.
“You are required to prepare quarterly reports and separate incidental reports from the quarterly report. Some of you get confused with these reports and for that purpose, we have come with a template for filing the reports. Some of you send us the same reports from the previous months. You forget what you said last month and simply copy and paste the same thing for the next month. This clearly shows that you are never on the ground.”