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State urged to legalise customary land

A LOCAL property firm has urged Government to legalise customary land to help the public borrow money from banks to enable more people own property.
Fairworld Properties Limited founder, chairman and chief executive officer Chisebwe Fubembeshi said legalising documents of customary land will be a source of investment for the public and help them come out of poverty because they can use it to acquire loans from banks as well as use it for commercial purposes.
Mr Fubembeshi said this when he presented a paper on Access to Land, Investment and Land Development Services – challenges and opportunities at the Zambia Institute of Banking and Financial Services (ZIBFS) first banking and finance conference,  whose theme was Housing Finance in Zambia –challenges and opportunities.
He said once proper documentation is issued to people it will also contribute to the development of housing units and reduce the current deficit in the country while helping Government plan settlements.
“It is important that Government also secures customary land to help people borrow money using the documents and get out of poverty.
“We need everyone to have access to land because they can use it for commercial purposes and also use titles to access loans. This will only be done through proper land management,” he said.
Zambia’s housing deficit is currently at about three million.
Mr Fubembeshi also said people will have access to good sanitation services such as water and electricity if there is proper documentation to land.
On pricing of land, he said Government should partner with the private sector to provide affordable plots.
He said under the partnership, Government could only promote acquisition of land while the private sector could provide land because they have the technical know-how.