Uganda is set to host the inaugural Land Learning Week conference, aimed at discussing and reflecting on the challenges and progress in the land sector.

Scheduled from June 9 to June 15, 2024, at Speke Resort, Munyonyo in Kampala, the event is organized through a partnership between the government and Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) involved in land governance. It is expected to draw 100 foreign delegates from over 40 countries.

The announcement was made by Judith Nabakooba, the Minister for Lands, Housing, and Urban Development, during a press briefing on June 7 at the Media Centre in Kampala. Nabakooba stated that the conference would serve as a platform for exchanging knowledge and sharing experiences in the land sector.

“Uganda will showcase how we have leveraged partnerships to achieve land tenure security. There will be field visits to Dokolo and Butaleja Districts to share knowledge and experiences about Government-CSO collaborations,” she said.

The minister outlined 13 key areas to be addressed at the conference, including handling forced evictions and remedies, best practices for conducting and concluding land reforms, combating land fraud and forgeries, enhancing government revenue from the land sector, and documenting women’s land rights and those of Indigenous communities. Other topics include best practices for releasing land for production, securing land for investment, and exploring conditions and challenges for successful partnerships.

Notable sponsors of the event include the International Land Coalition (ICL), Land Collaborative, the Center for International Forestry Research and World Agroforestry (CIFOR-ICRAF), RVO/Land-at Scale, and the National Land Coalition Uganda (NLC Uganda).

Nabakooba highlighted the achievements made through partnerships, citing the incorporation of 600 Communal Land Associations (CLAs) with support from various organizations, including Landnet in Agago and Nwoya, PELUM Uganda in Kaabong, Karamoja Development Forum, Moroto Catholic Diocese, and the European Union. Additionally, the government has issued 82,000 customary titles in collaboration with FAO in Kasese, ZOA in Terego and Nwoya, Makerere University in Adjumani, and Kisoro.

The press briefing also featured representatives from partners in the land sector, who emphasized the importance of the learning week. Dr. Doreen Kobusingye, a representative from the National Land Coalition, highlighted their achievements in amending the Land Act, conflict resolution, and contributing to the National Land Policy 2013 assessment.

“We thank the government of Uganda for the good partnership that has yielded positive results in ensuring land rights and access for vulnerable persons,” Dr. Kobusingye said. She added that following the amendment of the Succession Act, girls can now inherit land from their parents. Dr. Kobusingye also urged the government to address the land rights issues faced by refugees in Uganda.

Ms. Frances Birungi Odong, Executive Director of the Uganda Community-Based Association for Women and Children Welfare (UCOBAC), noted that despite the formulation of gender-progressive laws, many Ugandans are still unable to exercise their land rights.

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