By Our Reporters
The embattled Uganda Land Commission Chairperson Beatrice Byenkya Nyakayisiki has been summoned by the Police Criminal Investigations Directorate , (CID) to be questioned about allegations of abuse of office in respect of payments to claimants under the Uganda Land fund.
In summons dated October 11th 2021 and signed by Paul Kato Tumuhimbise , the ULC boss -Byenkya was directed to report directly to the acting Commissioner Central Government Department for questioning over alleged misappropriation of government resources .
It is alleged that billions of shillings have been swindled at the Land Fund through fraudulent payments to fictitious claimants , extortion , and inflated payments to landlords . Some of the rightful claimants have not been paid for decades and they keep lining up at the ULC while waiting for their payments .
The Management standoff between the Uganda Land Commission Chairperson Beatrice and her fellow Commissioners has taken a new twist with Minister of Lands, Housing and Urban Development- Hon. Judith Nabakooba temporarily taking over the management of ULC and the land fund which receives billions every quarter from the central government for purposes of compensating landlords and allow bibanja holders to secure their land rights .
Nabakooba has prioritized the protection of millions of Bibanja land holders from illegal evictions and land grabbing in her new role as Minister of Lands. She has been traversing the country to handle numerous cases where bibanja landholders face serious threats of eviction. The minister has also vowed to handle firmly the corrupt registrars and middlemen who have made land transactions in Uganda a nightmare .
Minister Nabakooba’s actions to take over the day to day management of the Uganda Land Fund followed a public fall out between the ULC Chairperson Beatrice Byenkya and her fellow Commissioners .
It is also reported that disgruntled staff of ULC have since petitioned the new Land Minister to intervene and resolve the stand off between their bosses . The public altercation between Byenkya Nyakayisiki and her colleagues is said to have paralyzed work at the ULC.
Nabakooba has also directed the Auditor General to carry out a speedy forensic audit and invited the IGG Beti Namisango Kamya to inquire into alleged abuse of office and misappropriation of ULC resources by the ULC Boss , Commissioners and staff.
It is on the record that -IGG Beti Kamya while she served as Minister of Lands also had running battles with Byenkya Nyakayisiki and their differences could not even be resolved by parliament as to who had powers and control over the ‘wet’ Land Fund .
President Yoweri Museveni has called for land reforms in Uganda and some of the issues which have to be resolved including compensation of land lords -some who are absentee as government rolls out a country wide program to secure land rights of millions of bibanja holders .