Prof. Morris Ogenga-Latigo, the Agago North Member of Parliament has called for a new law on land use in Uganda, to “help citizens start appreciating the value in their land.”
“If you enact a new land law that regulates the use of land and is underpinned with proper Agricultural Policy, then people will begin to see a different value on land including its vegetation,” he said.
Latigo noted for instance that in developed countries like Denmark, one can only have land after passing certain qualifications including having a Certificate for the Land.
“When you have something like that and you talk about the threat of climate change, then people will know its effect.’’
Latigo was delivering a keynote speaker at the 11th annual distinguished lecture organized by the Refugee Law Project at the Gulu district Council Hall.
He however warned that when making the law, Government should not make any exception for any one as it has done in the past with other legislations.
Meanwhile, Latigo attributed the rampant environmental destruction in the North to the effect of the 20-year Lord’s Resistance Army insurgency which he says made many people vulnerable and turned to the natural resources for survival.
The Former Leader of Opposition also reiterated the need to have a transitional justice mechanism put in place as the law normally takes long to be amended.
Article 237(1) of the Constitution states that land belongs to the citizens of Uganda and Article 26(1) protects the right to own property either individually or in association.
Gulu district Chairman, Mr. Ojara Martin Mapenduzi said that fighting environmental degradation needs a collective responsibility adding that communities needs to be sensitized on use of renewable energy like Solar, energy saving stoves vis-à-vis use of charcoal.
Dr. Chris Dolan, the Director of refugee Law project said Global warming is a matter of urgency and it will spare no one is action is not taken to avert it’s drastic effects.
This years lecture was held under the theme,’’ Understanding the nexus between Enviromental destruction in a conflict and Post-conflict setting and Transitional Justice.
The Lecture brought stakeholders in different fields like academia, research, Local Government among others to discuss the effects of destruction of the environment in Northern Uganda.