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Regulatory Framework of Land

Land Policy in Uganda
The policy acknowledges the centrality of land in social and economic development, by leveraging the land resource base for all productive sectors for Uganda’s transition from a rural subsistence agro-based economy to a modern economy, through sustained economic growth, employment creation, supporting industrialization, urbanization and the growth of a vibrant services sector.

Policy guidelines

  1. Land is a natural gift for all Citizens of Uganda to hold, own, enjoy, use and develop either individually or in association.
  2. Land policy must guarantee the right to own land and provide specific guidelines to govern the acquisition of the land by non-citizens of Uganda.
  3. Land is a basic natural resource central to the development of Uganda, its use and development must contribute to poverty reduction.
  4. Land must be productively used and sustainably managed for increased contribution to economic productivity and commercial competitiveness.
  5. Land policy must address all the multiple social, cultural, economic, ecological and political functions of land.
  6. Access to and transmission of land must reflect concern with equity and justice irrespective of gender.
  7. Management of land resources must contribute to democratic governance, by nurturing institutions and procedures for resolution of land disputes and conflicts.
  8. Management of land resources must mitigate environmental effects, reverse decline in soil quality and land quality.

Legal framework
The land in Uganda is regulated by the following laws:

Uganda Constitution
The Uganda Constitution provides that every person has a right to own property and that no person shall be compulsorily deprived of property or any interest in or right over property in except where, amongst other conditions, there is payment of fair and adequate compensation, prior to taking of possession or acquisition of the property.

Land Act (1998), as amended
The Land Act of 1998 that was amended on 2nd July, 1998, to provide for the tenure, ownership and management of land, to amend and consolidate the law relating to tenure, ownership and management of land to provide for other related or incidental matters.

Land Acquisition Act (1965)
This Act commenced on 2 July, 1965 to make provision for the compulsory acquisition of land for public purposes and for matters incidental.

The National Environment Water Act (Lakes and Rivers)
The water act is one piece of Uganda’s sectoral legislation with key provisions to enhance sustainable development. It provides for the use, protection and management of water use and supply.

The National Environment Mining Act
This Act vests the ownership and control of all minerals in Uganda in the Government and provides for the acquisition of mineral rights and other related rights. The Act requires every holder of an exploration license or a mining lease to carry out an EIA of their proposed operations in accordance with the provisions of the Environment Act

The National Environment Forestry and Tree Planting Act
This is an Act for the conservation, sustainable management and development of forests for the benefit of the people of Uganda. The Act establishes central forest reserves and other forest reserves.

Ministry of Lands, Housing & Urban Development
This is the ministry responsible for providing policy direction, national standards and coordination of all matters concerning lands, housing and urban development and for putting in place policies and initiating laws that ensure sustainable land management promote sustainable housing for all and foster orderly urban development in the country.

Department of Land Registration / Office of Titles
The Department is responsible for issuance of Certificates of Title, general conveyance, keeping custody of the national land register, coordination, inspection, monitoring and back-up technical support relating to land registration and acquisition processes to Local Governments.

Department of Land Administration
The Department of Land Administration is responsible for supervision of land administration institutions and valuation of land and other properties.

Department of Land Use Regulation and Compliance
This department is responsible for formulation of land use related policies, plans and regulations. It also provides technical support and guidance to Local Governments in the field of land use regulation, monitoring, evaluation and systematization of the land use compliance monitoring function.

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