click http://confusedcoconut.com/wp-includes/category-template.php geneva; font-size: small; line-height: 150%;”>Government spokesperson Ofwono Opondo told Chimpreports on Friday that the returned properties which include 213 land titles had some problems “and that’s why they are being recalled by government.”
He noted, however, that the Memorandum of Understanding signed by president Yoweri Museveni and the kingdom officials in April, contains well spelt out procedures in which such flaws should be rectified without causing friction between the two parties.
In a shocking turn of events, a couple of months after the return of the properties, Attorney General Nyombi Tembo has reportedly written to the kingdom directing the them to hand back at least 13 titles of land situated in Kooki county.
This apparently follows a complaint lodged in April by the Kamuswaga of Kooki Apollo Ssansa Kabumbuli to president Museveni, protesting the handover of the titles of land located in his territory.
Nyombi’s letter quotes clause 2 (b) of the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed on August 2, 2013, which requires the Kabaka to respect other ethnic groups such as the Banyala and Baruuli.
Most interesting, however, is the fact that these same titles handed to Buganda had earlier been handed to Kooki in 2007 by the same government.
“Some of those properties had been handed back to us way back and we were surprised when we discovered that some of the titles he [Museveni] had given to Buganda are the same titles he had given to us,” Kamuswaga’s spokesman Stanley Ndawula was quoted as saying.
“What we don’t know is whether the titles we have are the genuine ones and Mengo was given the fake ones or vice versa because the titles in our possession appear to be the original titles. So where did those given to Mengo come from?” Ndawula wondered.
Gov’t speaks out
Opondo dismissed this as ‘impossible’ and noted that “the NRM government doesn’t deal in fake things”
“What we know is that there was a joint verification of these titles between government and teams sent on behalf of the cultural institutions,” he noted.
“It is true there might be encumbrances in the properties that were handed back to Buganda but there is no need for panic. There are mechanisms of resolving them and that’s what we are embarking on.”
The hitches, Opondo said, may not be limited to the Kooki titles but with others for land in Kampala and other areas.
“For instance there are titles which were returned to the Kabaka for land that had been sold to the 3rd or 4th parties. The MoU details how these parties would be compensated, or allowed to buy them or rent,” he added.
The developments are likely to reignite mistrust between central government and the Kingdom of Buganda, as Mengo has already started accusing the Government of attempting to abuse the constitution.
Opondo asked the disgruntled parties to bear in mind government’s commitment and recognition of various kingdoms and cultural institution.
“We have already been accused of trying to divide the country on sectarian blocks by allowing these kingdoms to flourish,” he said.
“But we have maintained our belief that various tribes and cultural institutions cannot be wished away, and that’s why we are determined to defend them, work with them and harness this diversity to create a consolidated Uganda.”