businessman Kiconco Lusanja land
Lusanja land: High Court gives 30days for residents to vacate the contested land saying businessman Kiconco is the rightful owner of the land. File Photo

Lusanja land: High Court gives 30days for residents to vacate the contested land saying businessman Kiconco is the rightful owner of the land

The High Court in Kampala has given 30days ultimatum for residents occupying the contested Lusanja land to vacate. This came after the court ruled out that Medard Kiconco, a businessman is the rightful owner of the land.

Court says since the residents occupied the land in question illegally, Kiconco should consider taking over his piece of land within 30 days, without any occupant.

Justice Tadeo Asiimwe in his Friday 4th October 2019 ruling, however, warns that if the residents refuse to vacate the land, an eviction order by the High Court Execution Division will be issued.

But, Asiimwe declined a request to issue an order compelling occupants to compensate Kiconco shs500m.

According to him, residents were confused about where the land exactly belonged, but ordered residents to cover the costs Kiconco spent in pursuing the case.   

Justice Asiimwe, also ruled that Kiconco subsequently acquired ownership of the contested piece of land in 2016, after legally buying it from Paul Bitarabeho in 2013.

“Paul Bitarabeho testified that he was the rightful owner of the land after acquiring letters of administration on the same and sold to the plaintiff (Kiconco).

The plaintiff has been found to have rightfully purchased the land from Paul Bitarabeho and is the rightful owner of the land registered in April 2016,” judge’s ruling stated.

Asiimwe also ruled that 127 tenants on Lusanja land who claimed the own the land, trespassed on the contested land, the reason being the land does not belong to them.

“Trespass is a criminal offence in the laws of Uganda which includes entering one’s land without permission. The defendants, therefore, trespassed on the plaintiff’s land,” Asiimwe ruled.

Judge Asiimwe further ruled that Lusanja land belongs to Kawempe Division, Mpererwe in Kampala District not in Lusanja, Wakiso District as claimed by occupants.

Asiimwe says Local Council Chairperson, Henry Ssejemba confused the residents at the time they bought the land. He says he signed on their agreement plot documents that the land belongs to Wakiso District, yet the land belongs to Kampala District.

“They (the defendants) didn’t know where exactly their land was situated, and the LC1 chairman who signed on their agreements confused them. When I visited the land, I noticed that the land (in dispute) was in Kampala near Lusanja where the buy agreement indicated.”

Judge Asiimwe further ruled that Bitarabeho is the only authority mandated to sell the contested Mpererwe land to any person because he’s the only administrator of the land.

He then issued a directive to the Kampala Capital City Authority to demarcate Wakiso and Kampala District boundaries of the land in question. And soon after the ruling, an identified man fainted.

The ruling follows the October 2018 controversial eviction in Lusanja, plot 271, block 206 where over 300 families were left homeless, characterised by confusion on where exactly the land belongs.

Tenants said the land belongs to Lusanja, Wakiso District well as Kiconco insisted that the land is part of Ssekayonyi, Mpererwe, Kampala District.

The confusion attracted a numbery of politicians representing the district in defence of the tenants, saying that the land is situated in Lusanja Wakiso District, that includes; Rosemary Seninde Wakiso District Woman legislator, Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine, the Kyadondo East legislator and the Latiff Sebaggala, the Kawempe North legislator.

This includes the fountain of honour, H.E. the President of the Republic of Uganda, Yoweri Kaguta Museveni who as well paid a visit to the highly contested land and promised to settle the matter.

Shortly after the president’s visit, the High Court in Kampala ruled out that the eviction of tenants was illegally proceeded, and asked Kiconco to go to court and seek a court order that confirms him the rightful owner of the land in question.