Tanzania - Land Rent Defaulters Have Nine Days to Pay or Face Legal Action

Dodoma — Land, Housing and Human Settlements Development minister, Mr William Lukuvi, has issued a nine-day ultimatum to defaulters of land rents to pay or face legal action.

Mr Lukuvi made the remarks here on Tuesday, June 11, 2019 during a meeting with heads of public and private institutions and companies as well as owners of industrial and commercial plots with accumulated land rents arrears.

Some 197 institutions and companies were represented at the meeting, out of the 207 who were summoned to the meeting by Mr Lukuvi last week.

"Starting June 21, we will start sending some of you to court and confiscating some of the properties using the brokers, to whom we have already given the assignment until you pay. You are required to pay by June 20, 2019," he said.

Mr Lukuvi found no kind words against the defaulters, telling them: "I did not invite you because I know you. I invited you because of the records that I have which show that you have accumulated arrears in land rent... .You are here so we can talk and ultimately, you must pay in accordance with the law," he said.

For those seeking exemptions, Mr Lukuvi said, he did not have the legal mandate of exempting anyone from payment of land rent but asked them to read the Government Notice (GN) Number 347 which was published on April 26, 2019.

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"For those who believe they deserve the exemption, they should read GN 347 of 26thApril, 2019," he said.

The GN in question shows who deserves to be exempted.

Under the GN, the exemption goes only to those institutions that do not use land for profit-oriented undertakings.

"You cannot own a school and claim that you are not doing business. We want to be sure that in everything you do, there is no business element. If you believe you deserve the exemption, just fill the form," he said noting that the exemption does not involve arrears but that it only applies to those who own land and have not been doing business on it from June last year in line with the 2018 Finance Act.

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