I Don’t Own Land

Land is surely the most valuable physical resource in a country where war and civil strife is prevalent. its value can depreciate but with an ever growing population, its value is and will most likely always rise. Land does not is one investment where the risks are supposed to be very low. So it’s safe to say that investing in land is one sure way of keeping your hard earned savings in a permanent place.
As villages develop into towns and towns expand into cities the previously neglected lands start selling like hot cake and suddenly everyone wants a piece of the pie. Speculators start speculating, sellers start selling and buyers start buying. Demand is a given, but supply is static.  That being the case some people with no lands also start to sell. They sell what they do not have and the buyers buy what the seller could not sell and that’s when trouble begins.
With registered land chances of one losing one’s land through a forgery are minimized. But in a country where over 50% of the land is unregistered, both the land owners and the prospective buyers are at a risk. As a young man you dream of buying a plot of land setting up a house and starting a family there. So you save every penny half starve yourself, stay home most Friday nights basically almost cease to exist on the social scene. So now you have saved enough and so you would like to put your dream into reality. You contact a few land brokers but prices are so prohibitive even those several kilometers from town. What’s one to do? You ask around and good news there is some land somewhere along Busabala Road. You rush to meet this seller who is offering land in your price range you are so excited you see the land and like it, its location and neighborhood. You elect to take it up. But first you need to know you owns it so you ask for the land title. The expression you get is for world cup. The broker, seller e.t.c look at you like you are from Mars. You have no idea why! Unknown to you, you are the only one in Jerusalem who does not know that Jesus is risen.
Realizing that you are totally clueless, the broker takes you aside and narrates to you how all the land in that area is Kabaka’s land and how he thought that it’s a known fact. You understand that it’s difficult to establish the true ownership and so you leave that deal. The broker is furious and demands for his commissions. Even when you don’t like the land the rule is that you have to pay the broker to compensate for his time. You are furious but nothing to be done you part with a cool Ugx 100k for no work done. You remember the trials and tribulations of getting a rental soon after school where you had to pay like over 5 brokers before you could land on a rental in a habitable state.
What to do what to do? You are like to hell with Kampala land so you decide to try your luck in Mbarara. To your shock it’s not different either there. Almost all the land that is not owned either by the church or the municipal council or companies is unregistered. You are told that this is how the system works and that an agreement from the seller is all it takes to transfer the land. This seems very risky, but you need the land. What’s one got to do?

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