PRESIDENT John Magufuli has revoked title deeds of 15,567.6 undeveloped acres in Morogoro region as per pleas of four district councils.
The affected 14 farms’ owners include famous businessman Jeetu Patel under Noble Agricultural Enterprises Ltd at Mvumi village in Kilosa and Esther Sumaye, the wife of the former Prime Minister Frederick Sumaye.
Land, Housing and Human Settlements Development Minister William Lukuvi said the revocation was in accordance with the country’s regulations and land laws, dismissing as unfounded claims that the move discriminated owners on their political, tribal and religious affiliations.
Mr Lukuvi was speaking yesterday at the meeting chaired by a Morogoro Regional Commissioner Dr Kebwe Stephen Kebwe. He said during the 2015 general election campaign, idle land was a critical issue particularly in Morogoro, Kilombero, Kilosa and Mvomero districts where residents decried shortage of land for farming.
The minister added that after assuming power, Dr Magufuli immediately worked on the ministry’s recommendations to revoke ownership of 14 undeveloped farms. He said eight farms in Kilosa District belonging to Patel and Mrs Sumaye who owned 473-acre farm in Mvomero District were affected.
Other affected two farms belong to Shanta Estate Co Ltd at Msowero in Kilosa with 2,200 acres in total as well as the 1,769-acre estate under New Msowero Farms Ltd.
Other victims of the bold government move are Darbrew Limited, James Lengido, Saidi Longido, Lengai Lupejo, Sefu Longido and Maboli Sangati at Wami Luhindo village in Mvomero District. He named other owners who have failed to develop over 6,500 acres in Morogoro as Guard Kiangi, Ndeshukurwa Abel Sumari, Leila Omari and Usafirishaji Mikoani Union Ltd.
Dr Kebwe said a team of experts is evaluating 223 farms, mostly in Kilosa, promising that the report will be submitted to the minister for appropriate actions.
But, the RC warned wananchi against invasion of the dispossessed land pending the respective councils to plan appropriate uses in the best interest of citizens, as per law.