Govt puts land survey firms on notice

MINISTER for Land, Housing and Human Settlement Development Angeline Mabula has warned several planning and survey firms against delaying land formalisation projects across the country.

Dr Mabula added that companies that don’t carry out the exercise in accordance with the terms of their contracts will face disciplinary action.

She issued the warning in Dar es Salaam on Friday during a working session to discuss the implementation of the Dar es Salaam Master Pan (2016-2036) and strategies to solve challenges in the land and settlement formalisation projects countrywide.

According to Dr Mabula, “the ministry’s review conducted between June and December 2020 highlighted many problems that have prevented the land and settlements formalisation targets from not being met, including formalisation work not being completed or taking a long time.

“Another challenge is the inadequate management of planning authorities for formalisation tasks,” she continued. “Some companies take people’s money but do not carry out the tasks. There are no accurate records of formalisation information and collections of peoples’ funds in planning authorities. Planning and surveying companies are taking on more work than they can reasonably handle.”

According to her, the ministry created a 10- Year Land Regularisation (2013–2023) Programme with a focus on ensuring each citizen has the right to own land.

Dr Mabula stated that the programme has identified various strategies to deal with unplanned settlements, among other things. “One of the identified strategies is the settlement formalisation in areas that are being developed rapidly and without planning.”

The minister said in implementing the programme involvement of private sector received more impetus from 2015, where a total of 166 companies including 81 planning and 85 surveying companies got opportunity to work in the programme.

To date, she said settlement formalisation in the country has been done in 1,961 streets in 164 councils of all 26 regions.

On surveyed plots, a total of 1,170,639 plots have been surveyed and approved, which is equal to 50.4 per cent of all planned plots. In addition, 1,482, 846 plots which are equal to 49.6 per cent are in the preliminary survey stages, according to Dr Mabula.

She stated that the ministry’s nationwide assessment between July and November 2022 revealed a total of 3,397 streets in 184 councils across all 26 regions in Mainland Tanzania have been formalised  while a total of 1961 streets, or 57.7 per cent, have been or are being formalised.

Furthermore, 1,436 streets (42.3 per cent of all streets) were discovered to be lacking any formalisation projects.  She said in order to address the issue of proliferation of unplanned settlements in the country the Ministry expects to formalise 559 streets from 34 councils in 15 regions through the Programme.

“Dar es Salaam is one of the most important areas in the ongoing formalisation exercise across the country. A total of 272 streets of the five councils of Dar es Salaam are implementing formalisation projects due to the large problem of unplanned settlement,” she said.

About 24 per cent of all formalisation work in the country is done in Dar es Salaam Region. So far, a total of 554,738 plots have been planned and formalised, according to the minister.

Despite the achievements, she said there were still challenges that the ministry continues to work on including monitoring all the companies that have not completed the surveying and planning works in the streets where they have taken work.

“We will also continue to take disciplinary measures against companies that fail to fulfil their obligations in accordance with their contracts,” Dr Mabula said.

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