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Mbarara district allocates land to judiciary for construction of Court of Appeal

Didas Tabaro, the Mbarara District Chairperson. URN photo

Mbarara, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Mbarara district council has agreed to a resolution by the district executive to allocate land to the Judiciary for the construction of the Court of Appeal.

The resolution that was tabled before the council by Didas Tabaro, the district chairperson, was unanimously approved by the district councilors.

The district leadership had earlier opposed the allocation claiming that the Judiciary did not follow the right procedure in requesting the land. The Judiciary had initially written to Mbarara city which had responded by allocating one acre of land.

A row erupted between Mbarara city and the district over ownership of land that was allocated to the Judiciary after Mbarara city failed to allocate the Judiciary a piece of land from which it has a title, but instead gave out land over which Mbarara district local government claimed ownership.

The land that was disputed over is located on Kamukuzi Hill next to the Constitutional Court in Mbarara City North Division.

Robert Mugabe Kakyebezi, the Mbarara city Mayor claimed that since the district was shifting to its new headquarters in Bwizibwera Rutooma town council, the city then had recognized ownership of property and land initially owned by the district.

He said they had consulted the Attorney General for guidance before they did the allocation.

During a meeting with Justice Richard Buteera, the Deputy Chief Justice early this month, Juliet Nabakooza, the Vice-Chairperson Mbarara district said the allocated land belonged to the district, questioning the procedure that was followed by Mbarara city in allocating land to the Judiciary that they don’t have a title for.

She asked the Deputy Chief Justice to reverse the process and write formally to Mbarara district which is the rightful owner and with the land title to the allocated land.

However, Didas Tabaro, the Mbarara district chairperson on Friday confirmed that the Judiciary through the permanent secretary had asked the district leadership for land in a phone call.

During a council session on Friday at Kamukuzi, the district councilors unanimously agreed to allocate one acre of land to the Judiciary.

Jolly Kabwizi, district councilor for people with Disabilities after passing the motion said it was a relief to the people of Mbarara and the western region to be saved from the long-distance and money to go to Kampala.

Last year, Principal Judge Dr Justice Flavian Zeija, said the Judiciary was planning to construct 8 regional courts of appeal across the country in the newly created cities of Arua, Gulu, Mbale, Jinja, Masaka, and Fort Portal, beginning with Mbarara city.

Justice Zeija explained that the establishment of regional courts of appeal was aimed at decongesting the court in Kampala.



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