Five shoddy title deeds revoked

LANDS, Housing and Human Settlements Development Minister, Mr William Lukuvi, yesterday revoked five title deeds of a Briton, accusing him of acquiring the land deceptively.

Mwanza-based Toyota dealer Hamant Patel is alleged to have used a Tanzanian birth certificate to acquire the land. Mr Lukuvi further ordered an immediate verification of resident and non-resident joint venture companies, which had been given land and later transferring ownership to foreigners.

Addressing a news conference in Dar es Salaam yesterday, Mr Lukuvi decried a tendency by non-residents to camouflage as citizens through the use of Tanzanian documents to fraudulently acquire land.

“We are forced to revoke the five title deeds of Patel, the foreigner who owns plots in Mwanza, Tabora and Simiyu,” said Mr Lukuvi, pointing out that the information from the Immigration Department shows that the foreigner was residing in the country under a Class A permit, which expires in 2017.

“I have ordered a probe by the Prevention and Combatting of Corruption Bureau (PCCB) on Patel to find out if he owns properties in other areas along with those involved in the process,” said the minister.

Mr Lukuvi said the Companies Act on land ownership demands residents to possess at least 51 per cent shares for the company to qualify for the title deed, charging that some companies have been deceitfully using advantage of the residents who later transfer their shares through the Business Registrations and Licensing Agency (BRELA).

“The verification has already started and if we discover companies, which were formed on the ill-intention, serious legal actions will be taken against all involved in the law violation,” vowed the minister. Tanzania’s Land Act limits ownership of land to citizens, with foreigners allowed access to land through the derivative rights via the Tanzania Investment Centre (TIC).

Currently, a group of impostors are allegedly using forged documents, purporting to be the City Council offers of 1980, to deceive the poor. Mr Lukuvi reminded public officials to be on the watch while effecting financial transactions on the sales and transfers of properties using the offers.

“From now onwards, all transactions related to the sale or transfer of property using original 1980 offers, should go through the Zonal Commissioners’ offices for verification in three months before the notice expiration,” he said.

People who will present the offers within the three months will obtain titles within one month, while serious legal measures will be taken against those found in possession of forged documents. The minister, however, condemned the current trend by some people grabbing undeveloped farms and transforming them into residential areas without proper authorisation.

“Do not take the law into your hands, but rather inform the authorities and the government will confiscate the properties and process the areas into residential,” he ordered.

Elaborating on the grabbing of former Premier Fredrick Sumaye owned farm by members of the public at Mabwe Pande, Mji Mpya, Mr Lukuvi said the land had been undeveloped for some time and the owner had been issued with a notice.

Five shoddy title deeds revoked Five shoddy title deeds revoked Reviewed by on 10:54:00 PM Rating: 5

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