SOROTI – A family in Soroti District has accused the NRM vice chairperson for eastern region, Capt Mike Mukula, of grabbing their land and using armed guards to scare them off.
The land in question measures 30 acres and is located in Madera Ward, Northern Division in Soroti Municipality.
The family of late Ibrahim Musoke accuse Capt Mukula of buying their land from the late Fazil Ali, a squatter, without their consent. Ayub Ssegawa and Hadija Mukasa, both Musoke’s children, claim their late father allowed Ali to temporally settle on the land because he was his mechanic.
They claim that Mukula has refused to negotiate with them so as to resolve the dispute and say that he has deployed security guards to watch over it.
However, Mukula claims to have bought the land more than 20 years ago, arguing that whoever is dissatisfied should follow legal procedures.
A 2017 report by Uganda Human Rights Commission on land disputes highlights private individuals, communities, state agencies such as the National Forest Authority, Uganda Wildlife Authority, and Uganda Prisons Service as some of the parties to the land disputes across the country. The report says the land disputes come in the form of land grabbing, border disputes, encroachment on protected areas, disputes relating to compensation and family-related disputes
Experts say the scourge of land disputes and land grabbing is on the rise because the government has failed to implement the provisions of the Constitution, which recognise customary tenure as one of the four land tenures, the others being freehold, mailo and leasehold.