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   1.   Short title and commencement

   2.   Interpretation

Establishment and Functions of Land Boards

   3.   Continuation of Land Boards

   4.   Vesting of tribal land in Land Boards

   5.   Powers and functions of Land Boards

   6.   Directions by the Minister

   7.   Appointment of Land Board members

   8.   Qualification, removal and suspension of members

   9.   Vacation of office

   10.   Filling of vacancy

   11.   Temporary absence of members

   12.   Meetings of Land Board

   13.   Quorum and procedure of meetings

   14.   Committees of the Land Board

   15.   Disclosure of interest

   16.   Confidentiality

   17.   Land Board secretary

Financial Provisions

   18.   Funds of the land board

   19.   Financial year

   20.   Accounts and audit

   21.   Annual report

Grant of Customary Land Rights

   22.   Application of Part IV

   23.   Issue of deed of customary land grant

   24.   Grant of land to non-citizens

   25.   Effect of Part and presumption that Part applies

Grant of Land Rights under Common Law

   26.   Application of Part V

   27.   Grant by way of lease

   28.   Conversion

Land Required for Public Purposes

   29.   Grant of land to State for public purposes

   30.   Commissions of inquiry

   31.   Repossession of land for public purposes

   32.   Compensation payable for vacating land

Land Board’s Consent to Deal with Land

   33.   Land board’s consent to deal with land

   34.   Proposed transactions with non-citizens to be advertised

   35.   Application for consent

   36.   Grant or refusal of consent

   37.   Transactions without consent of land board void

   38.   Recovery of consideration

   39.   Registration of documents

   40.   False statements

   41.   Acts in furtherance of void transaction


   42.   Demarcation of boundaries

   43.   Cancellation of customary land rights

   44.   Recovery of land

   45.   Presumption

   46.   Certificate of land board

   47.   Enforcement of land board decisions

   48.   Appeals

   49.   Offences and penalties

   50.   Power to require information

   51.   Protection from personal liability

   52.   Establishment of association of Land Boards

   53.   Creation of subordinate Land Boards

   54.   Regulations

   55.   Repeal

   56.   Transitional and savings

      Schedule 1

      Schedule 2 - Tati Tribal Area

      Schedule 3 - Chobe Tribal Area

      Schedule 4 - Kgalagadi Tribal Area

      Schedule 5 - Ghanzi Tribal Area

Act 1, 2018,
S.I. 30, 2018.

An Act to provide for the continuation of Land Boards; to vest tribal land in such boards; to define the powers and duties of such boards; and to provide for matters incidental thereto.

[Date of Assent: 19.02.2018]

[Date of Commencement: ON NOTICE]


1.   Short title and commencement

   This Act may be cited as the Tribal Land Act, 2018 and shall come into operation on such a date as the Minister may, by Order published in the Gazette, appoint.

2.   Interpretation

   In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires-

   "develop" means, to introduce or carry out works or improvements in accordance with the purpose for which the grant was made, and "development" shall be construed accordingly;

   "diagram" has the same meaning assigned to it under the Land Survey Act;

   "grant" includes any disposition of land under the common law, and includes a grant of ownership or of lease;

   "Kgosi" includes any person performing the functions of Kgosi;

   "Land Board" means a land board established under section 3;

   "member" means a member of the land board;

   "Moemela Kgosi" has the meaning assigned to it under the Bogosi Act;

   "private company" means a private company within the meaning of the Companies Act;

   "registered deed of land grant" includes a lease agreement registered by the Registrar of Deeds;

   "repealed Act" means the Tribal Land Act repealed under section 55;

   "share" means a share or debenture within the meaning of the Companies Act;

   "tribal land" means land in a tribal area and, subject to the provisions of the Mines and Minerals Act , the Water Act and the Mineral Rights in Tribal Territories Act, includes any interest in land and anything which is either artificially or naturally attached to the land and which, by operation of the common law, accedes to it; and

   "register" means registration in terms of the Deeds Registry Act.

Establishment and Functions of Land Boards

3.   Continuation of Land Boards

   (1) A Land Board established under section 3 of the repealed Tribal Land Act shall continue to exist as a Land Board, as if established under this Act.

   (2) A Land Board shall be a body corporate with perpetual succession and a common seal, capable of suing and being sued in its own name and, subject to the provisions of this Act, performing such acts as bodies corporate, may by law, do or perform.

   (3) Subject to the provisions of this Act a Land Board shall have power to do anything and enter into any transaction to facilitate the proper discharge of any function conferred or imposed upon it under this Act or which is necessary for, or incidental to, the attainment of the objectives of the Land Board.

4.   Vesting of tribal land in Land Boards

   All the rights and title to land in each tribal area listed in the first column of Schedule 1 shall continue to vest in the Land Board set out in relation to it in the second column of the Schedule, in trust for the benefit and advantage of the citizens of Botswana and for the purpose of promoting the economic and social development of all the peoples of Botswana.

5.   Powers and functions of Land Boards

   (1) All the powers previously vested in a Land Board and a subordinate Land Board under the repealed Act in relation to land, including-

   (a)   the granting of rights to use any land;

   (b)   the cancellation of the grant of any rights to use any land;

   (c)   the imposition of restrictions on the use of tribal land;

   (d)   the authorising of any change of use of tribal land; or

   (e)   the authorising of any transfer of tribal land,

shall vest in and be performed by a Land Board acting in accordance with powers conferred on it by or under this Act.

   (2) Notwithstanding the generality of the provisions of subsection (1) each Land Board shall-

   (a)   manage and administer all land within the area set out in the first column of Schedule 1 in relation to that Land Board, and may make and execute grants or other dispositions of any such land or any interest therein, subject to any conditions or restrictions as may be necessary;

   (b)   ensure the equitable distribution of land to citizens of Botswana in a manner that ensures sustainable development and the protection of natural resources;

   (c)   advise Government, whenever appropriate, in any matters relating to policies as may be necessary for, or incidental to, the attainment of the objectives of the Land Board;

   (d)   do all such things and perform all such functions as may be necessary for, or incidental or conducive to, the attainment of the objectives of the Land Board.

   (3) A Land Board may, subject to the approval of the Minister, authorise any person in writing to exercise any of the powers conferred upon the Land Board by this Act.

   (4) The authorisation referred to in subsection (3) shall be subject to such conditions and restrictions as may be prescribed by the Minister.

   (5) During the formulation of policy relating to the exercise of its functions under this Act, a Land Board shall consult the District Council and Tribal Administration which have jurisdiction over the land administered by the Land Board.

6.   Directions by the Minister

   The Minister may give a Land Board directions of a general or specific nature regarding the exercise of its powers and the performance of its functions, which directions shall not be inconsistent with this Act or with the contractual or other obligations of the Land Board, and the Land Board shall give effect to any such directions.

7.   Appointment of Land Board members

   (1) Each Land Board shall consist of-

   (a)   eight members, appointed in accordance with the prescribed procedure and who shall hold office for three years and be eligible for re-appointment; and

   (b)   three ex-officio members, namely-

      (i)   a Kgosi or Moemela Kgosi,

      (ii)   one member representing the Ministry responsible for trade, and

      (iii)   one member representing the Ministry responsible for agriculture.

   (2) The Minister shall appoint a chairperson from the members of the Land Board and the deputy chairperson shall be elected by members from amongst their number.

   (3) The chairperson and the deputy chairperson shall hold office for a period of three years.

   (4) The Minister shall, by notice in the Gazette, publish the appointment of members, specifying the dates of their appointment and the period for which they are appointed to the Land Board.

8.   Qualification, removal and suspension of members

   (1) A person shall be disqualified from being appointed as a member of a Land Board or from continuing as a member on the grounds that he or she-

   (a)   has been declared insolvent or adjudged or otherwise declared bankrupt under any law in force in Botswana or elsewhere and has not been discharged, or has made a composition with his or her creditors and has not paid his or her debts in full;

   (b)   has been sentenced to imprisonment without the option of a fine for any offence, whether in Botswana or elsewhere;

   (c)   is certified to be insane or otherwise adjudged or declared to be of unsound mind under any law for the time being in force in Botswana;

   (d)   is the holder of an office in a political party, a councillor in a local authority or a member of the National Assembly; or

   (e)   holds any public office, or is acting in any public office by virtue of a contract of service expressed to continue for a period exceeding six months.

   (2) The Minister may, in writing, suspend from office, a member against whom criminal proceedings are instituted for an offence in respect of which a sentence of imprisonment without the option of a fine may be imposed, and whilst that member is so suspended, he or she shall not carry out any duties under this Act or be entitled to any remuneration or allowances as a member of the Land Board.

   (3) The Minister shall remove a member from office, if the member-

   (a)   has been found to be physically or mentally incapable of performing his or her duties efficiently, and a medical doctor has issued a certificate to that effect; or

   (b)   has been convicted of an offence under this Act, or under any other Act for which he or she is sentenced to imprisonment for a term of six months or more without an option of a fine.

   (4) A Land Board may perform its functions notwithstanding any vacancy in its membership.

9.   Vacation of office

   (1) A member, not being an ex-officio member, may at any time resign his or her office by notice in writing addressed to the Minister.

   (2) The office of a member other than an ex-officio member shall become vacant-

   (a)   if circumstances arise under which, if he or she were not a member of a Land Board, the member would be disqualified in terms of section 8 from being appointed as a member of the Land Board;

   (b)   if he or she is required to vacate office under subsection (3);

   (c)   if he or she is adjudged bankrupt or insolvent;

   (d)   upon his or her death;

   (e)   upon the expiry of one month’s written notice to the Minister, of his or her intention to resign from office; or

   (f)   if he or she is summarily dismissed by the Minister on the grounds of contravening the provisions of this Act.

   (3) The Minister may by notice in writing require any member, other than an ex-officio member, to vacate office, if, after giving such member an opportunity to be heard, the Minister, is satisfied that the member-

   (a)   has been absent-

      (i)   for three consecutive days from any meeting of the Land Board, or

      (ii)   from three consecutive meetings of the Land Board,

without the permission of the Land Board or without providing reasonable excuse to the Land Board;

   (b)   has contravened the provisions of this Act or has otherwise misconducted himself or herself to the detriment of the objectives of the Land Board;

   (c)   has failed to comply with the provisions of section 15 and section 16;

   (d)   is unable to exercise the functions of his or her office by reason of absence or other cause and has been, or is likely to be, so unable for a period exceeding six months; or

   (e)   is otherwise unfit to discharge the functions of his or her office.

10.   Filling of vacancy

   (1) Where the office of a member becomes vacant before the expiry of the member’s term of office, the Minister shall appoint another member in place of the member who vacates office, until the expiry of a period during which such member would have otherwise continued in office.

   (2) Subsection (1) shall not apply where the remainder of the period for which the member whose office has been vacated would otherwise have held office is less than six months.

11.   Temporary absence of members

   (1) If any member of a Land Board, other than an ex-officio member, is temporarily unable to exercise the functions of his or her office, whether by reason of illness, absence or other cause, the Minister may appoint or elect a temporary member to exercise such member’s functions during the period of his or her incapacity.

   (2) An appointment made under subsection (1) shall cease to have effect if the Minister notifies the temporary member of the revocation of such appointment, or if the member in whose place the temporary member has been appointed notifies the temporary member that he or she is about to resume or has resumed his or her functions, or that member vacates his or her office by virtue of the provisions of section 9.

12.   Meetings of Land Board

   (1) Subject to the provisions of this Act, the Land Board may regulate its own proceedings.

   (2) Upon giving notice, in writing, of not less than 14 days, a meeting of a Land Board may be called by the chairperson, but if the urgency of any particular matter does not permit the giving of such notice, a special meeting may be called upon the giving of a shorter notice.

   (3) The notice referred to under subsection (2) shall state-

   (a)   the place and time for the meeting; and

   (b)   the agenda for the meeting.

   (4) There shall preside at any meeting of a Land Board-

   (a)   the chairperson;

   (b)   in the absence of the chairperson, the vice chairperson; or

   (c)   in the absence of the chairperson and vice chairperson, such member as the members present may elect from amongst themselves for the purpose of that meeting.

   (5) The Land Board secretary shall cause to be recorded and kept minutes of all the proceedings of the meetings of the Land Board.

13.   Quorum and procedure of meetings

   (1) The quorum at any meeting of a Land Board shall be a simple majority of the members.

   (2) A decision of a Land Board on any question shall be by the majority of the members present and voting at the meeting and, in the event of an equality of votes, the member presiding shall have a casting vote in addition to that member’s deliberative vote.

   (3) A decision of a Land Board shall not be rendered invalid by reason of a vacancy on the Land Board or the fact that a person who was not entitled to sit as a member did so sit.

   (4) Where a temporary member is appointed by the Minister such temporary member shall attend and take part in the voting at meetings whenever the member to whom he or she is alternate is absent from such meeting.

   (5) A Land Board may invite any person whose presence it deems necessary, to attend and participate in the deliberations of a meeting of the Land Board, but such person shall have no vote.

14.   Committees of the Land Board

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