KAMPALA – The High Court in Kampala, has today October 4, ordered the 148 residents claiming ownership of Lusanjja land to vacate the piece of land at Sekanyonyi Mpererwe in Kampala District within 30days.
Justice Taddeo Asiimwe ruled that the land in contention was bought by businessman Medard Kiconco in 2016 from the legitimate administrator Paul Katabazi Bitarabeho as opposed to the 148 other claimants who bought from Chrispa Bitarabeho who did not have powers of administration.
In the judgment delivered by Court Registrar Flavia Nabakooza declared the 148 people trespassers thus faulting their LC1 Chairperson of Lusanjja Village Samuel Kibuuka for confusing them by ignorantly continuing to administer and sign agreements for Kampala yet his jurisdiction falls under Lusanjja in Wakiso district.
Early this year, Kiconco filed two suits in the Land Division of High Court suing Kampala Capital City Authority, Rosemary Sseninde, State Minister for Primary Education also Woman Member of Parliament for Wakiso, State Minister for Lands, Persis Namuganza and 148 other respondents.
Ms Namuganza was faulted for having exceeded her powers as the State Minister for Lands by directing people to continue occupying the land until she communicates otherwise, while Sseninde was sued for causing financial loss by stopping Kiconco from erecting a factory on his land and KCCA was faulted for failing to demolish the property which was constructed on Kiconco’s land by the said squatters.
However, court has ruled that there was no evidence to show that the two ministers incited people to stay on Kiconco’s land.
In deciding this case, Justice Asiimwe has based on the evidence of a joint -survey report carried out by the parties in this case which confirmed the territorial boundaries of the suit land to be in Mpererwe Kampala and not Lusanjja in Wakiso District .
The judge consequently ordered KCCA to put proper demarcations on the borders of Wakiso and Kampala to avoid future confusion having found that Kiconco’s land is found in Ssekanyonyi Mpererwe and not in Lusanjja, Wakiso District.
The judge based on the evidence he gathered from the Locus visit to this land where Crispa Bitarabeho showed him a different and distant piece of land she sold to the 127 residents.
The judge however, ordered Kiconco to compensate four people out of the 17 he found on the land in 2016 before he takes possession in one month as the 148 also prepares to vacate his land and pay him costs for denying him the right to use this land.
The four include, Fred Kanyike, Scovia Nyanzi, John Kilabila and Madina Nansereko.
Justice Asiimwe declined to award Kiconco the UGX500m he had asked for in damages as there was confusion on the location of the land coupled with the ignorance of where whom they had to acquire their Bibanja.
After the ruling, the Lusanjja people who looked disillusioned vowed to stay on the land arguing that they would rather die there than leave land that what rightful belongs to them.