Illegal issuance of Land Titles in Central Forest Reserves (CFRs)
This paper highlights Anti Corruption Coalition Uganda’s position over the Illegal issuance of land titles in Central Forest reserves (CFRs) by the Uganda Land Commission. This position is informed by the prevailing land controversies around CFRs and the Investigative study that was carried out by Anti Corruption Coalition Uganda( ACCU) in 2014/2015 with an aim of establishing the facts surrounding individuals owning illegal land titles in selected Forest Reserves of; Kyewaga, Gunda, and Nonve in Wakiso District. The investigative research was also motivated by a media publication titled ‘’Behind the Scenes’’ (WEMNET, 2014) that showed that over 52 land titles in Forest reserves had been issued fraudulently to individuals and or investors.
With the ambition as enshrined in the vision 2040 (GoU, Vision 2040, 2013)of turning Uganda into a middle income status country, there is dire need to balance the growing insatiable appetite for investments in agricultural development, industrialization, human settlement, real estate with sustainable natural management. These growing needs place enormous pressure on partners in conservation to broker development outcomes that suit both agendas. It implies rethinking current natural resources management paradigms from an economic, social, political, and environmental and accountability perspectives as well as better understand conflicts and the driving forces behind them. Despite plethora of legal and institutional reforms like National Forestry Plan that created new institutions like National Forestry Authority, Forestry Inspection Division, District Forestry Services and Private Forest Owners. The current forest cover loss stands at 200,000 hectares (MWE, 2015) annually The research conducted on the ‘illegal possession of land titles in Forest reserves’ (ACCU, 2014 identifies corruption, greed and disregard of law and policies that govern the sector.