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Don’t Tamper with Land, Buildings in New Cities-Magyezi Warns District leaders :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Don’t Tamper with Land, Buildings in New Cities-Magyezi Warns District leaders

Magyezi however told Uganda Radio Network in an interview that the government has for now halted any transaction of land in the mother districts that are still operating from the city.
A street in Gulu City

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The Local Government Minister, Raphael Magyezi has warned local leaders in districts that gave birth to new cities not to dare dispose of land and properties in their names within the cities. The warning comes at the backdrop of disputes between district and city authorities over the transfer of immovable properties from the district to new city councils across the country. 

In October last year, Attorney General Kiryowa Kiwanuka advised the mother districts to pass their immovable assets to the new cities, relinquish their headquarters, and establish new headquarters in different areas. Kiryowa’s opinion came almost a year after the ten newly created cities including Mbale, Soroti, Arua, Lira, Gulu, Fort Portal, Masaka, Mbarara, Hoima, and Jinja began operations.

Whereas Kiryowa’s opinion was welcomed by the new city authorities, district leaders largely opposed the move, saying that his decision wasn’t backed by any law. Magyezi however told Uganda Radio Network in an interview that the government has for now halted any transaction of land in the mother districts that are still operating from the city. 

He acknowledged the property row between district and city authorities but warned that the former shouldn’t make any attempt to sell what was in their names.

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Magyezi says the government will soon release guidelines on the transfer of the property from the district to the city councils. He notes that they are also still studying five other Municipalities in the country for their possible elevation to city status in the next five years. These include Wakiso, Entebbe, Moroto, Kabale, and Nakasongola municipalities.

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In Gulu, a row emerged early this year between the city and district authorities over the transfer of properties owned by the district to the city council. The district had acquired 104 acres at Awach Town board, about 35 kilometers outside Gulu City to establish its new headquarters.

Gulu District LC V Chairperson Christopher, Opiyo Ateker told Uganda Radio Network in an interview on Tuesday that a large percentage of their staff still operates from the city due to the inability to construct headquarters. Ateker however notes that the district won’t relinquish its property to the city council until clear guidance is issued by the Local government ministry.

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Gulu City Council Clerk Isiah Tumwesigye says they don’t have interest in the property but notes that the government had earlier communicated that district assets would now be under the stewardship of city councils.

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