Civil society activists call for land registration to mitigate land disputes in Unity state

The Civil Society Coalition on Natural Resources (CSCNR) on Tuesday called on the Unity State government to embark on registration of land in order to mitigate rising land disputes in the State.

By Simon Deng

The Civil Society Coalition on Natural Resources (CSCNR) on Tuesday called on the Unity State government to embark on registration of land in order to mitigate rising land disputes in the State.

Gizam Moses, the Programme Officer of CSCNR who also doubles as the Executive Director of Humanity and Community Empowerment Organization (HCEO), said that land is a precious natural resource that needs to be properly regulated by law.

“All inhabitants of the land in the state and country have equal and inalienable rights to own land without dispute, every person shall have the right to acquire or own property as regulated by law and as stipulated in Article 32 (1) of the Constitution,” Moses said during the opening of the one-day public discourse on community land rights in Bentiu town of Unity State.

 “In abrogation of these important provisions, the land rights of vulnerable members of the communities are at stake, land disputes are a result of fraudulent allocation of land in a manner where one plot of land is allocated to more than one person,” he added.

The dialogue organized by CSCNR with support from Norwegian People’s Aid (NPA) attracted members of State Transitional Legislative Assembly, chiefs, civil society organizations, leaders of people with disabilities (PWD), internally displaced persons (IDPs), returnees, youth and women. 

Peter Chuong Duoth, Secretary General of Unity State Disability Union (USDU), said that the workshop has awakened and enlightened the general civil population especially the people with special needs on land related issues.

“I call upon CSCNR to continue with their advocacy to empower our people of Unity State to know their land rights, and to support the vulnerable groups to have their land rights protected,” Duoth said.

“We have gained knowledge and we now know that everybody within the society need to have land regardless of  disability or whatever barrier, the CSOs to continue supporting all the minority groups  especially vulnerable people so that they can also advocate for their rights,” he added.

David Jany Yak, Member of Unity State Transitional Legislative Assembly representing Koch County lauded CSCNR for having organized such an important symposium for people of Unity State.

“The engagement left no one behind, it is important to enlighten our people on the issues related to land rights and land related disputes, including the importance of legal land occupation and acquisition,” Yak said.

“We further call for special consideration for the protections of the land rights of vulnerable members of the society such as women, widows, PWDs, returnees and the rights of girl-child to inherit land,” he added.

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