Thursday, July 15, 2010

Southern Sudan's Land Act

The latest Juba Briefing paper entitled "Urban land conflict in Eastern Equatoria" was released a couple of days ago. It is worth a read to see the difficulties of land [re]acquisition for IDPs and refugee returnees as well as the issues of settled IDPs being kicked out of their new found homes. Issues that are quite easily forgotten but have quite an impact on conflicts nonetheless. The presentation of the briefing paper seemingly doubled up as the public release of the '2009 Southern Sudan Land Act'. An interesting and predictably problematic point can be found surrounding the issue of restitution of land for displaced peoples:

"A person may be entitled to restitution of a right in land if he or she lost her or his right after an involuntary displacement as a result of the civil war starting from May 16, 1983 (Chapter XXXI). But claims must be made within three years of the 2009 commencement of the act."
Fair enough right? Well, the only problem is that the Land Act, despite it being called the 2009 Land Act, was only really made available and operational this year. Therefore, the three years instantly becomes about a year and a half. Furthermore, it is only really available for social elites and those who have been lucky enough to catch wind of its release.

Also, for "foreign investors" like Phillipe Hielberg who "...insists the law is less important to his deal than the clout he has bought into by associating with a former warlord, Paulino Matip, whose family says it owns some of the land in Mayom county, in Unity state.", well.... he actually has nothing to worry about..... I just wanted to mention him because he's seems like such a wanker....
I hope the land he has leased turns out to be that of those displaced and that they manage to take it back.
Hielberg says, "You have to go to the guns: this is Africa,"........wanker

1 comment:

  1. Thanks. I just learned about this while listening to KPFA's Voices of the Middle East about this and I'm afraid it made me very skeptical of the SPLM.

    I produced this radio report yesterday and I couldn't help liking the young Garang, nevertheless..