Tycoon Amos Nzeyi is in trouble for selling the Tamangalo land to the National Social Security Fund (NSSF) without proper documentation. The Indian family is determined to take back the land, meaning Nzeyi could be forced to pay back Shs11 billion and annual interest to NSSF.
Nzeyi has argued that when he bought the land, he didn’t know that the 366-acre land belonged to M/s Temangalo Tea Estate, a company owned by the family of Muhammad Hassanali Moosa before they were expelled with several other Indians by the late Iddi Amin in August 1972.
The family recently sought the help of the Commission of Inquiry into Land Matters chaired by Justice Catherine Bamugemereire and accused Nzeyi of fraudulently acquiring and occupying their land. The land in question is located on Block 296 Plot 20 in Busiro in 1993.
Nazim Moosa, based in Vancouver, Canada, appeared before the land probe and presented an original lease title saying his parents acquired the tea estate from the late Daniel Mugwanya Kato and held it until they were expelled in 1972. He testified that at the time Mr Nzeyi acquired the land, the family of Muhammad Hassanali Moosa had a running lease.
According to Moosa, upon visiting it in 1993, part of the disputed land was bushy with some structures, a dairy farm and a watershed and that when they contacted Mugwanya’s family, which leased the land to their parents, they denied knowledge of Nzeyi’s claim on the land.
According to Ebert Byenkya, the commission lead counsel, investigations into accusations of Temangalo land grabbing and further explained that the matter is pending hearing of more evidence from other witnesses.
The witnesses to be heard before the land probe include retired banker, Abbas Mawanda, who allegedly sold the disputed land to Mr Nzeyi.
It is not clear when and how Nzeyi acquired the disputed land, how he signed a joint mutation form for sub division of the land and how he transferred it to NSSF. NSSF paid Shs24 million per acre of land to Nzeyi upon providing land titles that were believed to be genuine although the family insists that the title in question was forged.
Asked about the running lease at the time of him acquiring the land, Nzeyi testified that any questions can best be answered by Mawanda and his former lawyers of M/s Sebalu and Lule.
Nzeyi admitted that at the time of acquisition of the disputed land, there was existence of tea on the land but said it had grown wild but denied knowledge of the 1993 court case against him.
Nzeyi when asked by the Commission recently said that he took interest in the disputed land in 1988 with a view of establishing a dairy farm but acquired it in phases from former managing director of Uganda Development Bank, Abbas Mawanda who he knew in 1975.
Asked about the running lease at the time of him acquiring the land, Nzeyi testified that any questions can best be answered by Mawanda, who allegedly sold him the disputed land and his former lawyers of M/s Sebalu and Lule.