Maria Nakut- at 65 years lives in Nadunget Sub County in Moroto district. She was denied her right to access and possess land which she inherited from her father. A son to her father’s shepherd claimed ownership of the land, arguing that being a woman, Maria had no right to inherit the land. When she learnt about her rights through ULS awareness sessions, Maria reported the matter to Longora Gabriel, the Uganda Law Society (ULS) community paralegal in Nadunget.
The paralegal attempted to mediate but due to the complexity of the issues therein, he referred Maria to the ULS Legal Aid Clinic in Moroto whereupon, ULS legal offi cers, Counsel Aballa and Bruna Acam intervened and initiated mediation which was held in Nadunget sub-county. Maria, the adverse party, the council of elders from both parties, the Area Land Committee chairpersons andthe ULS paralegal participated in the mediation. ULS lawyers enlightened participating members on the law regarding land ownership, emphasising women’s right to own land. Both parties were thereafter given an opportunity to give their sides of the story.With the help of ULS, the adverse party agreed to return the piece of land to Maria, who, in a gesture of good will, opted to share the land with the adverse party. Community members appreciated the need for women to own property and desired to know more about land rights upon which they were sensitised.