The lessor is responsible for the payment of all taxes prescribed by law. This will reduce the current operation of tenants by landlords. Parliament decided by an overwhelming majority that the currency of the transaction between the landlord and the tenant would be the Shilling of Uganda. The reason is to protect the Ugandan shilling, which has consistently depreciated against the dollar. While there is a case for consumer protection, there is a limit to the extent that the law can intervene in a market. The law protects tenants in many ways; A rental agreement may be implied in writing, by word of mouth, by a data message or by the behaviour of the parties. Under the new regulations, it is wise that with a consideration of more than 500,000 Shs (only 500,000 schillings), the lease must be enforceable in writing or in the form of a data message. The adoption of a law formalizing and regulating the relationship between landlord and tenant is a step in the right direction for Uganda. However, we find that the law is very inclined to support and protect tenants and does very little to meet the interests of landlords. However, to be relevant, this law must strike a balance and take into account the interests of both landlords and tenants, or risk being irrelevant. The law should also be strengthened by a faster dispute resolution mechanism. The Ugandan Parliament passed the Building Owners Act 2018 on June 26, 2019.
The objective of the legislation is to regulate the relationship between landlords and tenants, to reform and consolidate the law on the rental of premises, to ensure the responsibility of landlords and tenants with respect to the rental of premises and related issues. (3) Any person who makes it an agreement to rent or sublet dwellings or premises that should be paid in advance is considered an offence under the subsection (2) and the bill prohibits the landlord from increasing the rent at a rate of more than 10% per year or a percentage that may be imposed by the Minister in a legal instrument. The landlord is required to set a 90-day period for a proposed rent increase. In addition, a temporary rent landlord is prohibited from increasing the rent before the term of the period expires, unless the contract provides for an increase in rent before the term expires. In any proceeding before a chamber concerning a residence or residence, the lessor or its representative and the tenant or any person who has entered into a tenancy agreement for the residence or premises or their representative have the right to be heard by the House and all of these parties are entitled to appeal in accordance with Section 4 and to be heard by the High Court; But no one can be represented before the High Court unless a lawyer has the authority to practise before the Court of Justice. In particular, I congratulated Members on the adoption of the law, which was first debated in 2012 and was the subject of reflection consultations with the participation of landlords, tenants and property developers. In addition, the bill proposes that the Minister of Housing and Urban development impose the format of leases. Therefore, the prescribed format may be a “single model” for both residential and commercial real estate, which does not adequately take into account the uniqueness of commercial real estate whose leases are often adapted to the purpose for which they are to be used.