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Policy Brief on Bill 133 of 2017 to Amending Article 26 of the Constitution

 

Ms. Judy Adoko, Executive Director of Land and Equity Movement (LEMU) has effectively authored this policy brief clearly articulating why Article 26 of the Constitution of the republic of Uganda should not be amended. Basically, Ms. Adoko makes a good point and demonstrates why there is no need for a constitutional amendment on the matter of land management and that in fact there are other land management legislative issues that need to be acted upon urgently. One such issue is the need for a law to be enacted to fully operationalise the implementation of Article 26 of the Constitution.

Ms. Adoko’s opinion is seemingly supported by another significant human rights lawyer, Mr. Nicholas Opio, who through social media sites, face book, warned that the proposed amendment of Article 216 is “an insidious and toxic amendment that will plunge the country into chaos, poverty and instability.”  Mr. Opio, like Ms. Adoko, proposes more appropriate alternatives to the constitutional amendment such as: expediting land dispute resolution mechanisms; reform of the land administration system and a revisit of the roles of district land boards.

The policy brief that is authored by Ms. Adoko is appropriately titled: “Why Uganda should be cautious about amending Article 26 of the constitution.” Read it in full here.

Certificates of Customary Ownership Risky Business

Uganda’s Constitution stipulates that “all land in Uganda shall vest in the citizens of Uganda and shall be owned in accordance with the following land tenure systems: customary, freehold, mailo and leasehold.”

A significant proportion, the majority, of Uganda’s land is under customary tenure - except in Uganda’s central region where the majority of the land is individually owned. Moreover, the bulk of Uganda’s individually owned land is under unregistered freehold mailo.

Read more: Certificates of Customary Ownership Risky Business

Rights Abuse - English the Official Language

 

“I am now speaking English. I refer to the British language as a captured weapon we are now employing.” His Excellency President Yoweri Kagutta Museveni speaking at the function at the residence of the British High Commissioner in Kampala for the 2017 Official Birthday celebrations of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and also the 65th anniversary of her reign.

English, the official language of the Republic of Uganda, is not indigenous to the territory. It is not an ‘African-Ugandan’ language. It is the language of those who colonised the territory; a clear testament of sustaining neo-colonialism.

Read more: Rights Abuse - English the Official Language

Policy Report on Agriculture in Uganda

This policy report on agriculture in Uganda from a cultural anthropological perspective historicises the formation of the political entity - the nation-state that is the Republic of Uganda and how its history shaped and continues to shape agriculture policy for the territory now known as Uganda. The report interrogates whether or not the actors in the overall landscape of the territory’s national policy framework for agriculture are characteristically the proverbial “blind leading the blind.”

Policy for the territory, in general, is often discussed in a manner that assumes that its population is homogenous.  Moreover, the territory has been occupied and claimed by different peoples. ‘Khosian-Ugandans’ are believed to have been the indigenous inhabitants of the territory. In the first millennium A.D. other African peoples, ‘African-Ugandans’ migrated from other parts of Africa into the territory, absorbing and replacing ‘Khosian-Ugandans’. In the late 1800s the English colonised the territory and appropriated territorial control from its prior inhabitants. 

Read more: Policy Report on Agriculture in Uganda

Customary Tenure in Uganda

 

Extracts from The Uganda National Land Policy (Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development, 2013):

4.3 Customary Tenure; 38: The majority of Ugandans hold their land under customary tenure.

Policy Statements (39)

  1. The State shall recognise customary tenure in its own form to be at par (same level) with other tenure systems.
  2. The State shall establish a land registry system for the registration of land rights under customary tenure.

Read more: Customary Tenure in Uganda

Right Colonial Land Injustice; Reconstruct Uganda

 

 The latest push by the Buganda Kingdom through its Buganda Land Board to give lease titles to hitherto customary land owners (bibanja holders) on Kabaka’s land that is code named “Kyapa Mungalo” (land title deed at hand) has sharpened a quagmire that is in-built within the nation-state Uganda on matters land.  For all intent and purposes the nation-state Uganda came into being through a major land grab by and for the benefit of the English who colonised the territory now known as Uganda; and that is the genesis of the quagmire. 

Read more: Right Colonial Land Injustice; Reconstruct Uganda

Health Care Services Policy Advocacy

Since January 2016, CPAR is implementing a research on Tuberculosis (TB) code-named: “Tuberculosis: Working to Empower Nations’ Diagnostic Efforts (TWENDE)” and it is doing so in a consortium with:

  • School of Biomedical Sciences of the College of Health Sciences of MUK (Uganda)
  • Kenya Medical Research Institute (Kenya)
  • Kilimanjaro Research Institute (Tanzania)
  • National Institute of Medical Research (NIMR) - Mbeya Medical Research Centre (Tanzania)
  • East Africa Health Research Commission (EAHRC) 
  • University of St. Andrews (UK) 

Read more: Health Care Services Policy Advocacy

Agriculture Policy Advocacy Programme

In 2016, CPAR began its Policy Advocacy Programmes in which it functions as a Consulting Organisation. The Open Society Initiative for Eastern Africa (OSIEA) contracted CPAR through its Managing Director, Ms. Norah Owaraga, a cultural anthropologist and the subject specialist, to conduct a study over a period of three months for the purpose of investigating “the elusive nexus between the endogenous and the exogenous food systems within the context of Uganda’s agriculture.” In the context of climate change, the overall goal of the study was to generate knowledge that will facilitate a deeper understanding of arguments that are related to food systems within Uganda’s agriculture.  Specifically the study objectives were to:

Read more: Agriculture Policy Advocacy Programme

Preventative Health Care Programme

 

Preventative Health Care (PHC) through Food, Nutrition and Environment Security is a major programming area for CPAR Uganda Ltd (CPAR). CPAR’s work in the area of PHC contributes to increased quantities, qualities and varieties of food crops that smallholder farmers produce at household level. For example, farmers who benefited from CPAR implemented interventions in 2013 attained harvest to sowing ratios as high as 1:6 for beans and 1:4 for groundnuts in Acholi; and 1:3 for groundnuts and for sorghum in Karamoja. 

Read more: Preventative Health Care Programme

Operation Wealth Creation and the Ad hominem Fallacy

 

“Operation Wealth Creation (OWC) is doing extremely well – the volume of inputs. The impact is enormous irrespective of the fact that the extension is not good, the impact is there.” 

That was the conclusion of the Budget Monitoring and Accountability Unit (BMAU) of the Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development (MoFPED)  on the performance of OWC. BMAU shared its conclusion of its view that OWC is doing extremely well during the Joint Agriculture Sector Annual Review (JASAR) 2016.  

Perhaps, before I apply logical analyses on the BMAU conclusion of OWC’s enormous impact during the financial year 2015/2016, let me first share what I understood as what BMAU communicated during the JASAR 2016 as the basis – the premise - on which it arrived at its conclusion:

Read more: Operation Wealth Creation and the Ad hominem Fallacy