The Leaders in Soroti City have decried rampant cases of grabbing of government land in the city.
At least 80% government land in Soroti city has been encroached by squatters while others have secured land titles.
During a community dialogue meeting held on Tuesday in Arapai ward, formerly Arapai Sub County headquarters, the leaders noted that several government property has been taken away by individuals yet this land is meant for development.
Joan Alobo Acom the Soroti City Woman MP said that several pieces of government land has been taken by squatters which is hampering development in the city.
Alobo has called for a special audit into the process of acquisition of alleged land titles in government land within the city while calling on the squatters to vacate before tough actions are taken against them.
Paul Omer the Soroti City East Mayor in a separate interview told this reporter that, in his division squatters have claimed land belonging to schools, forest reserves and health centres.
He attributed the continued land grabbing cases to greedy leaders who do not think about the next generation.
“Before the NRM government came into power, the previous governments guarded the government land, however, with the coming of this one, the government land has been stolen,” he said.
Omer has tasked the Ministry of Lands to withdraw land titles illegally created on various government property while blaming the rampant encroachments on selective justice against encroachers.
Joseph Ochen the Deputy Mayor Soroti City West lashed out at government agencies that continue to watch as land grabbers take advantage to take government land.
He also said that some government officials are also part of the mess.
Jorem Opian Obicho the Soroti City Land Board Officer also decried rampant land grabbing in the city noting that the board is currently incapacitated to handle such cases since most of the land files haven’t been handed to them by Soroti District.
“The government land has been encroached on. You rarely find government land which is free, because people have grabbed it,” He said.
He noted that with the rampant cases of land grabbing there is urgent need for issuance of land titles for both private and public land.