President Yoweri Museveni’s radio campaigns to sensitize Ugandans on the benefits of the proposed amendment of Article 26 of the Constitution are getting more riveting and revelatory.
While appearing on Radio West recently, Museveni mentioned names of people who have stalled government project such as roads, power lines and dams by demanding for exorbitant amounts of money in land compensation.
This time around as he spoke at Hoima municipality’s Spice FM radio station, President Museveni reassured Ugandans that the National Resistance Movement government still maintains its policy of letting people own land.
“ … the National Resistance Movement (NRM) government’s take on land is known as it was the first government to allow people to own land and will not therefore turn around and say land belongs to the government,” reads in part a statement from State House.
This, Museveni said, in retaliation to a section of opposition politicians who are “telling people” that the government wants to grab their land.
On that note, he maintained, the purpose of the law is to rather ease government acquisition of land for development of public infrastructure such as roads, electricity and the railway.
Accompanied by the Deputy Attorney General Mwesigwa Rukutana and the Minister for Housing Chris Baryomunsi, the President also revealed that there were two groups of people against the proposed amendment to the land law.
“There are two people in this fight against the amendment to the land law. These are thieves and those that are against the development of the country and want to stall government work,” he said..
He explained that with the proposed amendment to the land law, government must acquire land after compensating the owner and where a landowner is discontented, he or she can appeal in order to get fair compensation but at the same time ensuring that public infrastructure projects are not stalled.
Citing the Kamwenge-Fort Portal road that he had earlier on commissioned, Museveni said that there are some greedy people who want to loot government stall government projects with the hope of being compensated more money.
“The Kamwenge road works got stalled when a one Kasangwa wanted a billion shillings for a quarter an acre and yet the piece of land had been valued at UGX 89 million. The contractor had to change where the road would pass.”
The President said the amendment would allow discontented landowners to let government projects continue on as they appeal for fair compensation.
He revealed that during the construction of the Mpigi-Kanoni-Kabulasoke-Maddu-Ssemabule–Masaka road, government acquired 21 acres of his land in Gomba; he did not refuse government to acquire the land because he knew the road would be of use to him.