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Experts question intentions of proposed law on compulsory land acquisition
Senior lawyer Peter Mulira warns that if the bill is passed in to law, there would be more land evictions and Ugandans would be deprived of their right to own land.

Some experts on land law have questioned the spirit behind government's move to table the Constitution Amendment Bill 2017 that provides for compulsory acquisition of land by government for public works.

Peter Mulira, a lawyer and expert on land issues, warns that if the bill is passed in to law, there would be more land evictions and Ugandans would be deprived of their right to own land. 

The bill that seeks to amend Article 26 of the 1995 constitution will enable the central or local government to deposit with a court of law an amount of money awarded as compensation by government for the property declared for compulsory acquisition.

Government says the bill will end delays in implementation of government projects resulting the long land acquisition process.

However, Mulira says the current law in Uganda is adequate to handle the acquisition of land for infrastructural projects and compensation of land owners. Mulira maintains that those land owners who hold up government projects are few and far between and there is already a law that deals with people frustrating government projects.

The Vice Chairperson Uganda Land Alliance, Agnes Kirabo attributes this delay to government's decision to borrow money before securing counterpart funding for compensation.

Both Mulira and Kirabo have advised government to wait for the outcome Justice Catherine Bamugemereire's commission that is currently investigating land disputes in the country.