A report by Transparency International, a global corruption watchdog, has partly blamed the increasing cases of land evictions in Uganda on the increasing number of unregulated land dealers in the market who take advantage of the landowners’ ignorance of land registration procedures.
The report titled ‘Land and Corruption report 2019’ indicates that demand for land is becoming big business in Uganda and as a result, most land dealers pass off as experts in land matters, and have severally duped clients into authorizing them to process their land documents.
The report adds that besides the landowners, local leaders as well as members of land committees have limited knowledge of the land laws, which opens them to exploitation by land dealers.
The report adds that most landowners and citizens are unable to represent themselves directly at any of the ministry’s zonal offices for land services, which leaves them at the mercy of unscrupulous dealers.
Reacting to the report, Mr Denis Obbo, the spokesman of the Ministry of Lands, said Government is working on legislation to regulate land and property dealers.
“Uganda does not yet have a national real estate’s law. Yet the number of people acting as real estate agents on behalf of individual citizens has increased tremendously without clear guidelines on how the existing laws work,” Mr Obbo said.
“It is not only legally prudent, and in the interest of due diligence that the ministry knows such agents, but it is incumbent upon the ministry to record information about them for administrative purposes and to ensure limitation of unprofessional agents accessing the zonal land registry,” he added.