PF Bwana Mkubwa member of parliament Jonas Chanda says there is a lot of corruption in land management in the country.
In a statement, Dr Chanda stated that strong, punitive measures for perpetrators of illegal acts in land management needed to be enforced.
“I want the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources to quickly finalise and enforce the land policy in order to address the current problems in land management. Apart from ensuring transparency in land allocation in both State and customary land systems and thus reduce corruption in land management, the upcoming land policy should also reduce the number of players involved in land use, control and management,” Dr Chanda stated.
“Currently, the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, Ministry of Local Government, Ministry of Agriculture, traditional leaders, and the Department of Resettlement under the Vice-President’s Office are all involved in land management, making it difficult for citizens to acquire land.”
He stated that land ownership was a sovereign right of Zambians, and not foreigners. Dr Chanda stated that there were a lot of land disputes in his constituency.
“…including displacement of over 300 families in Chichele by Golden Lay Company, disputes between a big land buyer and families in Dairy Farm Chichele, the sale of Old Regiment compound to an Oil Marketing Company which wanted to displace over 5,000 people, and the demolishing of buildings owned by Zambians by a foreign businessman in Jacaranda area even when the matter was before the courts,” he stated.
Others irregularities Dr Chanda cited include allocation of plots by ‘cadres’ under high voltage ZESCO and CEC power lines, encroachment on government-owned land at Caritas High School in Ndeke where a Church building was constructed and at Mushili Clinic where individuals have built houses, and the continued abuse of the Presidents’ names by “unscrupulous individuals claiming previous Presidents gave them huge pieces of land yet without documentation”.
He stated the need for strong punitive measures for perpetrators of illegal acts in land management.
Dr Chanda also wondered why with so many people implicated in illegal land dealings, “very few have been arrested by police, and none have been convicted in the courts of law”.