MOROGORO District Commissioner, Rebecca Nsemwa, has urged non-governmental organisations (NGOs) providing legal aid services in the district to conduct an in-depth study to identify the primary factors contributing to the escalation of land conflicts and to provide advice to the government on the best course of action.
She made the call yesterday in Morogoro at the campaign launch, dubbed: ‘My land, My Right, My Life’.
“Legal aid organisations ought to conduct a thorough investigation to assist the government in resolving land issues in the Morogoro Region, which includes the Morogoro District,” she said.
She says that the majority of residents frequently come to her office in search of a variety of services, but largely land conflicts.
Along with the campaign’s launch, paralegals from the Morogoro, Gairo, Kilosa, Mvomero, and Morogoro District received training to help them become more knowledgeable about the many laws that have been amended something that will make them more dependable to the community in legal situations.
Ms Nsemwa further commended Liberty Sparks institution, the Tanganyika Law Society (TLS), and the Morogoro Paralegal Centre (MPLC), for the service they provide in solving land disputes.
On his part, the Director of the Liberty Sparks Institution, Evans Exaud, said women’s access to land ownership is still a challenge because the majority of them experience discrimination and barriers.
Other difficulties identified by Mr Exaud include the expense of lawyers and the fact that the majority of them lack expertise of the legal system and the law.
In order to ensure that harmful traditions and rituals are eradicated from the community, he stated, “We need to educate and mobilise the community on the importance of the right to land ownership for women and how it contributes to the development of the community.”
According to Anna Bahati, one of the paralegals from the Mvomero District, education has increased the legal knowledge and has enabled them to assist numerous groups struggling with issues including land misuse, inheritance, and the eradication of harmful cultural practises.
For his part, Peter Kimath, the Administrator and Communications Officer for the MPLC, stated that harmful traditional practises are still experienced in some tribes, particularly after the death of the husband.
Mr Kimath urged the legal community and the media to keep advocating for women since, under the law, they are entitled to inherit the assets that their spouses leave behind when they pass away.
He continued by saying that organisations should continue to provide education. “Let’s do away with the outdated customs that state the mother is not entitled to the house or the assets if the father passes away,”