PRESENTATION OUTLINE.. Tenure systems and differencesMisconceptions about customary tenurePolicy Proposal and sensitisation.LEMU's workWhat customary tenure Rights are.Issues: land grabbing, impact of titling of land; exclusion of the clan, co-ownership debate, protection, parallel justice syst
1. Making a case for better land rights for the marginalised: key land rights issues in Uganda: Presentation at the UNOCHA Meeting on 24th June 2009.
2. PRESENTATION OUTLINE. Tenure systems and differences
Misconceptions about customary tenure
Policy Proposal and sensitisation.
What customary tenure Rights are.
Issues: land grabbing, impact of titling of land; exclusion of the clan, co-ownership debate, protection, parallel justice systems, land gifts for development, current changes e.g. HIV, population,
LEMU’s proposed solutions
3. 1.BACKGROUND. Uganda has 4 legal tenure systems:
4. 2. Differences between c/t and others Comprises 20% versus 80% of land.
Titled versus not titled
Individual versus family, community, individual ownership
Written laws versus unwritten laws (now Teso, Acholi, Lango have written their laws).
5. 3. MISCONCEPTIONS/ATTITUDE ABOUT CUSTOMARY TENURE. Land is held communally (open access) hence no security of tenure to invest – community will donate land for projects.
Land cannot be sold hence no land market, necessary for progressive farmers access
Does not allow women to own land, hence need for giving women titles
Fragments land hence no commercial farms.
6. 4. Policy solutions so far evident… Title customary land for:
Land market boom for investors to access land.
Better security of tenure for individuals.
Access to bank loans for agriculture.
Pass a law for women to co-own land.
Have a pilot project for systematic demarcation.
7. 5. Impact of the push for titling So far, we are not aware of any certificate of customary ownerships issued since 1998.
People are very suspicious of anyone who talks about titling of land.
8. 6. LEMU’S FOCUS: customary tenure. Customary because it forms - 80% of land; most rural land where the poor live is customary and we wanted to find out if all said about customary tenure is true.
Carried out 4 research studies since 2003
Partnered with traditional institutions to understand customary tenure.
Assisted to write rules on customary tenure, wrote about customary tenure, lobbied for its support.
Now building alliances for the national anti land grabbing campaign.
9. 7. Our findings: what is customary tenure? Clan “government” set rules,
protected rights gave permission for sales Holding family head to account
Using communal clan land
Head of “Land Administration” held land in trust
Family allocated land in family
protected members’ rights
Individuals rights holder had secure rights to use
have permanent right to future allocation some became HH heads
10. 8. Who is the head of the family? Married man (boy on marriage)
Widow (wife on death of husband)
Unmarried mother (but when ?)
Divorcee (on return)
Orphans were never heads of family, uncles looked after their land and handed over to them.
Heir was a protector and had control over land in the pool and was in charge of allocation.
- both men and women can be family heads
11. 9. Whose role is it to protect land rights?
Protector (uncle for orphans, inheritor for widows, parents for children, husband for wife, brother for unmarried sisters…)
Family head, or extended family
Clan (land committee/court)
LCs (1- informal, 2 and sub-county)
Police (criminal or enforcement only)
12. 10. CHANGES AFFECTING THE LAWS Exclusion of the clan (no protection, sanctions of sales, writing rules, hearing land cases)
Co-ownership debate had the understanding of giving women freehold rights over family trust system of customary tenure – led to saying “women do not own land ..(in that way)
HIV, insurgency leaving young widows etc.
13. 11. EFFECT OF CHANGES ON RIGHTS Clan “government” set rules, protected rights gave permission for sales Holding family head to account Using communal clan land Head of “Land Administration” held land in trust Family allocated land in family protected land protected members’ rights Individual “title holder” had secure rights “in perpetuity” some became HH heads