Idle Plots-there are even in the Prime land of central business districtThe City of Kigali says it will go ahead with a plan to confiscate undeveloped plots of land, lying idle for more than three years despite several warnings to the owners.
So far, over 696 idle plots of land have been evaluated in latest inspection conducted in 2020, and risk confiscation, according to Marie-Solange Muhirwa, Chief Urban Planner of the city.
The city authority on Wednesday pointed out that land development permits have been issued to owners, but they have been not compliant to develop them.
“We carried out the inspection and evaluated idle plots. Afterwards, we contacted owners several times, asking them to develop them, but some have not complied,” Muhirwa said.
“For remaining undeveloped plots of land, the law will be applied.”
According to Article 58 of law no. 43/2013 OF 16/06/2013 Governing Land in Rwanda, “Any land in the following categories may be confiscated; the land within urban areas where a detailed physical plan was approved by competent authorities and it is clear that it has spent three consecutive years unexploited.”
Also article 60 reads: “The decision to confiscate the land from the land right owner cannot be taken before he/she has been given formal notice of ninety (90) days as of the date of receipt by the concerned person.”
City officials say that some the plot owners have acquired many plots of land in the “city corridor areas”, and have all been lying unutilized for over three years, which is against the law.
The City Mayor, Pudence Rubingisa pointed out that those undeveloped plots of land are becoming a challenge to the city’s development agenda.
He stated that some owners own many plots and are speculating to sell them more expensively in future, adding that it is one of the reasons why they hesitate to develop them as directed by the law.
“People willing to develop them are there. We cannot achieve development in a city, with people buying many plots, but not developing them,” Rubingisa stated.