Land Act, 2010
Act 8 of 2010
- Published in Government Gazette no. 42 on 14 June 2010
- Commenced on 14 June 2010 by Legal Notice of 2010
- [This is the version of this document from 14 June 2010.]
Part I – Preliminary
1. Short title and commencement
2. InterpretationIn this Act, unless the context otherwise requires —"adjudication" means the process which establishes, recognises and confirms with certainty and with respect to any particular parcel or plot of land, what rights and interests exist, by whom they are exercised and to what limitations, if any, they are subject;"agency" for purposes of expropriation of land for a public purpose or servitudes means a Government Ministry or department or an agent named in the notice of declaration to hold the land or benefit from the servitude for a public purpose;"agricultural land" means land used exclusively or mainly for agriculture, whether as arable, pasture, grazing, orchard or seed growing, or for fish farming, forestry (including afforestation), or for the breeding or keeping of livestock, including any creature kept for the production of food, wool, silk, skins or fur;"allocating authority" means such Local Council or other agency empowered to make allocations under this Act;"allocation" means the granting of a right to occupy and use land;"allottee" means a person other than the holder of a lease to whom an allocation of land is made under this Act;"alternative dispute resolution" includes arbitration, conciliation, mediation, settlement out of court and negotiation whether done in accordance with the rules and principles of the customary law or in accordance with the rules and principles of the common law or in accordance with statutory procedures or by private agreement between the parties;"approved development plan" means a general land use plan approved in accordance with the Town and Country Planning Act 19801;"Business Community" includes the Chamber of Commerce or any other business affiliation;"Chief" carries the same meaning as in the Chieftainship Act 19682;"Commissioner" means the Commissioner for Lands;"consent" means the certification or authorisation by the Commissioner to the applicant to deal in or to engage in a transaction on land under section 35 which is meant for the preservation of the integrity of the land tenure system in Lesotho;"corrupt practice" means the offering, giving, receiving, or soliciting of, directly or indirectly, anything of value to influence improperly the actions of another party in rendering of land services;"Deeds Registry" has the meaning ascribed to it by the Deeds Registry Act 1967;"demarcation" means the delineation by means of a land survey of boundaries of a plot of land;"demarcation map" means a provisional cadastral map prepared in respect of an adjudication section pending finality;"District Land Court" means the District Land Court established by section 75;"fraudulent practice" means any act or omission, including misrepresentation, that knowingly or recklessly misleads, or attempts to mislead, a party to obtain financial or other benefit or to avoid an obligation;"foreign enterprise" means—(a)partnership in which any partner is a non-citizen; or(b)a body corporate in which any of the directors or shareholders is a non-citizen;"land" includes land covered with water, all things natural or man-made growing on land, and buildings or other structures permanently affixed or attached to land;"Land Court" means the Land Court established under section 74;"lease" means a right granted or issued under this Act and the instrument evidencing the same;"Local Council" carries the same meaning as Local Authority in the Local Government Act 19973;"Minister" means the Minister responsible for land;"notice" when used as a noun, and unless the context otherwise requires, means a written notice;"overriding interest" means all the encumbrances, in interests, rights and powers capable of overriding first registration or subsequent registration or an allocation, without itself being registered;"person" includes any company or association or body of persons, corporate or incorporate;"pipeline" includes water and sewerage pipelines;"private servitude" means a servitude created by agreement between private parties with the consent of the Commissioner;"prescribed" means prescribed by this Act or regulations made pursuant to this Act;"proper authority" means any public body or officer or any official or any other person empowered under any law to discharge land duties, whether as a short term or long term assignment;"public interest" means the circumstances listed in section 51;"public purpose" has the meaning ascribed to it in section 50;"public servitude" means a servitude granted by the Minister under section 53;"registable title" means title to land which has been allocated:(a)for commercial or industrial purposes;(b)for purpose of an ecclesiastical, benevolent, charitable or educational institution of a public character;(c)for purpose of a hospital, clinic or dispensary;(d)for such other purposes as the Minister may, by notice published in the Gazette, declare;(e)for residential and agricultural purposes in urban areas; or(f)a title deed registered under the Deeds Registry Act 1967;"Registrar" means the Registrar of Deeds;"registration" and all derivatives of that word means registration in the Deeds Registry;"regulations" means regulations made under this Act;"regularisation" means—(a)the process of surveying, planning, adjudicating and registering the boundaries and rights associated with a parcel of land informally occupied or;(b)readjustment of boundaries for the purpose of town planning;"rural area" means an area which is not an urban area;"sectional title" has the meaning ascribed to it under section 9;"servitude" means a right attached to a parcel of land which is the subject of a lease either to use other land in a particular manner or to restrict its use to a particular extent;"sporadic adjudication" means the adjudication of a specific parcel of land undertaken in isolation from any contiguous or surrounding parcels of land;"surveyed land" means land, the boundaries, area and situation of which have been surveyed to the standard required for a lease of such land to be registered;"systematic adjudication" means the ascertainment of rights and interests of a defined area of land that consists of more than one parcel of land in which the boundaries and extent of each parcel of land within the area is demarcated and surveyed and the rights and interests therein recorded;"unsurveyed land" means land which has not been surveyed;"urban area" means an area defined and declared by the Minister under the Local Government Act 1997 to be an area under the jurisdiction of either an Urban Council or a Municipal Council.
3. ApplicationOn and after the commencement of this Act, notwithstanding any other written law to the contrary, except the Constitution of Lesotho 1993, this Act shall apply to all land in Lesotho.
Part II – Vesting of land
4. All land vested in the Basotho Nation
5. Overriding interests
6. Persons who may hold title to land
7. Power to grant titles vested in the KingThe power to allocate land, to grant titles to land, to grant or allocate servitudes, to revoke or derogate from a grant, to terminate a lease or a servitude is vested in the King and shall be exercised as provided for under this Act.
8. Applications for allocation of landApplication for allocation of land shall be made in the prescribed form to the allocating authority having jurisdiction.
9. Sectional title
10. Presumption of joint title in marriages
Part III – Administration
11. Commissioner of LandsThe office of Commissioner of Lands established in the public service shall continue in existence.
12. Functions of the Commissioner
Part IV – Allocation in rural areas
13. Application of this Part
14. Allocating authority
15. Procedure for allocation in rural areas
16. Leases for residential allocationsAn allottee of residential land in a rural area may apply to the Commissioner for a lease in respect of that land.
17. Leases for commercial and industrial purposesWhere a grant of title under this Part relates to land which is the subject of a registrable title, section 29 shall apply.
18. Leases for agricultural purposes
19. Continuation of existing allocationsAllocations of rural land made prior to the commencement of this Act shall be deemed to have been made under this Act.
20. Compliance with prescribed use
21. Revocation of allocation
22. Review against revocationA person aggrieved by a decision of an allocating authority in exercising its powers under section 21 may seek review of the decision in the District Land Courts.
23. Allocating authority to issue certificate
Part V – Grant of title in urban areas
24. Application of this Part
25. Allocating authority
26. Available land to be publicised
27. Notice by the CommissionerIn addition to the notice by the Minister under section 26, where land is available for grant of title, the Commissioner shall by notice with the particulars appearing in section 26(2) publicise the fact in at least one newspaper circulating in the country and in the offices of allocating authorities having jurisdiction and invite applications for grant of title.
28. Adverse claims on land
29. Allocating authority to issue certificate relating to grant of title
30. Application for a lease
Part VI – Lease rights and transactions
31. Application of this PartSave as otherwise provided, this Part applies to all leases and land transactions emanating from leases.
32. Duration of leases
33. Conditions of a lease
34. Application for servitudes
35. Rights of a lessee
37. Termination of lease for breach of condition
38. Rights of lessee upon expiry of lease
39. Rights of lessee upon surrender of lease
40. Surrender of lease not to extinguish obligation for payments
41. Derivative rights to revert to State upon surrender of leaseA derivative right granted out of a lease which is surrendered under this Act shall, as from the date of the surrender, be held by the State on the same terms and conditions as it was held by the person who has surrendered the lease.
42. Change of use
43. Abandonment of land
Part VII – Landholding ceilings
44. Limitations on size of landholding
Part VIII – Government acquisitions
45. Allocations to GovernmentAllocations may be made to Government in accordance with the provisions of Part IV and Part V for such purposes as the Commissioner may specify.
46. Temporary occupation of land by Government
47. Acquisition of leases by GovernmentExcept as provided for in Part IX of this Act every acquisition of land or servitudes by the Government from a lessee or lessees shall be by private contract.
Part IX – Acquisition and expropriation of land for public purpose
48. Declaration of land for public purpose or public interestWhenever it appears to the Minister that land which is unallocated is required for public purpose or public interest, the Minister after consultation with the allocating authority having jurisdiction shall by notice in the Gazette declare the land to be so required.
49. Expropriation of land for public purposes
50. Public purpose or public use
51. Expropriation and acquisition of land for the public interest
52. Principles behind expropriationAn expropriation under sections 49 and 51 shall be subject to the following principles:
53. Public servitudes
54. Compensation for public servitudes
55. Excess expropriated land to revert to State
Part X – Compensation
56. Deprivations of land to be compensated forIn all cases in which the implementation of this Act results in compulsory acquisition of property, the person deprived of such property shall be entitled to compensation at market value.
57. Obligation for compensationThe obligation to compensate shall lie with the body conducting the expropriation.
58. Period for claiming compensation
59. Conflicting claimsWhere conflicting claims are submitted to the Minister pursuant to section 58(1) the Minister shall, within one month from the last day of the period prescribed in section 58(1), refer the case to a District Land Court having jurisdiction in the area where the land in question is situate.
60. Compensation must precede expropriationCompensation shall in all cases of compulsory acquisition be made before conclusion of expropriation.
Part XI – Regularisation and adjudication
61. Scheme of regularisationThe Commissioner shall, after consultation with the chief and the residents or occupants of the area selected for regularization, prepare a draft scheme of regularisation in accordance with the regulations and in conjunction with Local Councils within whose jurisdiction the proposed scheme area is situate or most closely contiguous to where the regularisation area is situate.
62. Declaration of regularisation areaUpon Ministerial approval of the scheme of regularisation the Minister shall, by notice published in the Gazette, declare the area to which the scheme applies.
63. Implementation of a scheme of regularisationThe Commissioner shall be responsible for the implementation of a scheme of regularisation, but may delegate the whole or any part of the implementation of such scheme to the Local Council where the regularisation area is situate or most closely contiguous to where the regularisation area is situate.
64. Findings of regularisation to supersede previous recordsIn all matters of fact relating to the size or dimensions of the land in a regularisation area, the findings of the scheme of regularisation shall supersede all previous records.
65. Adjudication to precede registrationEvery registration of a lease under this Part shall be preceded by an adjudication of the rights relating to that land.
66. Systematic adjudicationSystematic adjudication shall be carried out in conformity with the regulations for adjudication of interests in land and the criteria under section 30(2) or any other criteria that may be determined during adjudication shall apply in the determination of rights.
67. Registration period
68. Presumption of sporadic adjudicationAll land for the time being not under systematic adjudication shall be deemed to be under sporadic adjudication.
69. Systematic adjudication to prevail over sporadic adjudicationWhere the Minister, publishes a notice in the Gazette declaring an area to be an Adjudication Area for purposes of systematic adjudication, then section 68 shall automatically cease to have effect in respect of all land defined in the said notice.
70. Tenants may be compensated during regularisationWhere an occupant of land has rented out the land or developments to third parties, such third parties may be entitled to compensation for any deprivation arising from the regularisation process, provided that the compensation shall be a reduction on the quantum of compensation due to the occupant.
71. Land acquisition and redistribution in compliance with planning lawsThe State may re-align land for purposes of compliance with the zoned use or for the better planning and layout of the land, including pooling and sharing of the same, and the creation of servitudes of necessity.
72. Appeals against regularisationA person who is aggrieved by a determination of a regularization or adjudication process may, within 30 days of the publication of the adjudication record and demarcation map, appeal to the District Land Court against that determination.
Part XII – Conflict resolution
73. Establishment of Land CourtsThe following courts are established with jurisdiction, subject to the provisions of this Part, to hear and determine disputes, actions and proceedings concerning land:
74. The Land CourtThe Land Court shall be a Division of the High Court.
75. District Land CourtsThe Subordinate Courts are the District Land Courts for the purposes of this Act.
76. RulesThe Chief Justice may, in consultation with the Minister responsible for land, make rules for the practice and procedure in the land courts.
Part XIII – Land revenue
77. Ground rent
78. Development charges
79. Allocation premiums
Part XIV – Cemeteries
Part XV – Miscellaneous
82. Powers of the Court
83. Additional offences
84. Corrupt transactions
85. Void transactions and titlesAny transaction or dealing in land and any title acquired pursuant to any transaction or dealing carried out contrary to this Act shall be of no effect.
86. Common law remedies not affectedNothing in this Act shall take away or interfere with the right of the State or a person to recover, under common law, compensation or damage for injury caused by an offence committed under this Act.
87. Savings and transitional provisions with respect to transactions
88. Savings and transitional provisions with respect to rules, orders, etc.Any rule, order, regulation, direction, notice, notification, condition, permit or other administrative act made, given, issued or undertaken before the commencement of this Act under any law repealed or amended in a material particular by this Act shall, if it could have been made, given, issued or undertaken under any corresponding provision of this Act, continue in force and have the like effect as if it had been so made, given issued or, as the case may be, undertaken.
89. Transitional provisions with respect to judicial proceedingsWhere a case relating to land was pending before the High Court or Subordinate Court prior to the coming into effect of this Act, the case may continue to be heard by the High Court or Subordinate Court until completion and the ruling emanating therefrom shall have the same effect as if made after the coming into effect of this Act.
90. Authority derives from MinisterEvery power, function or duty exercised under this Act shall be deemed to be done under the authority of the Minister in accordance with section 109 of the Constitution of Lesotho.
91. AppealsAn appeal shall lie to the Minister against any administrative decision made under this Act.
93. RepealThe Land Act 1979 is repealed.
History of this document
|Land Regulations, 2011||Legal Notice 21 of 2011|
Cited documents 1
Documents citing this one 40
- Haroon Abdulla Mahomed v KPMG Harley and Morris Joint Venture (Liquidators of Lesotho Bank) and Others (CIV/APN 328 of 2010)  LSHC 47 (19 June 2013)
- Haroon Abdulla Mahomed v KPMG Harley and Morris Joint Venture NO (Liquidators of Lesotho Bank) and Others (C of A (CIV) 34 of 2013)  LSCA 23 (18 October 2013)
- Khasake-Mokhethi v Moloi (CIV/APN 73 of 13)  LSHC 86 (22 August 2013)
- Land Regulations, 2011
- Lephatsa NO v First National Bank (CCT/ 142 of 2017)  LSHC 46 (26 October 2021)
- Lepholisa v Lepholisa and Another (LC/APN 12 of 2012)  LSHC 6 (17 February 2015)
- Lesotho National Development Corporation v Shake Universary (Pty) Ltd (CCT 209 of 2012)  LSHC 20 (10 November 2016)
- Lesotho Observatory Foundation v Hata-Butle (Pty) Ltd (CIV/APN 19)  LSHC 14 (5 September 2019)
- Likotsi Civic Association and Others v The Minister of Local Government and Others (LCC 6 of 2012)  LSHC 85 (30 November 2012)
- Liphehlo and Another v Liphehlo and Another (LC/APN 2014)  LSHC 51 (26 November 2015)
- Makatleho Masoabi and Another v Fumane Mofelehetsi (CIV/A 10 of 14)  LSHC 32 (21 August 2014)
- Makepe v Thotanyane (CCA 70 of 15)  LSHC 31 (31 August 2017)
- Malineo Moletsane v Rampati Moletsane (LC/A 2014)  LSHC 17 (5 December 2016)
- Malokotsa v Seqhee (CIV/T 565 of 18)  LSHC 30 (5 March 2020)
- Mamoshe Limema v Shalane Shale and Others (LC/APN 126 of 14)  LSHC 31 (21 August 2014)
- Mohale v Crown (CRI/A 9 of 17)  LSHC 23 (3 September 2018)
- Mohapeloa v Leribe Lodge (Pty) (C of A (CIV) 35 of 2017)  LSCA 13 (7 December 2018)
- Mokhahlane v Mokhahlane (CIV/APN 362 of 2019)  LSHC 41 (22 April 2021)
- Mokitimi v Buti (LC/APN/ 28 of 2019)  LSHC 10 (4 June 2021)
- Molapo v Gama (LC/A 8)  LSHC 37 (4 November 2019)
- Moliehi Maneo Ntene (nee Ramakau) v Sello Ramakau (CIV/APN 321 of 2013)  LSHC 3 (1 April 2014)
- Moshoeshoe v District Football Association -Leribe (C of A (CIV) 27 of 2018)  LSCA 6 (1 February 2019)
- Mosoeunyane v Likotsi (CIV/APN 2014)  LSHC 2 (18 August 2016)
- Mosooane v His Worship Magistrate Hlabanyane (CRI/REV 42 of 17)  LSHC 24 (20 March 2018)
- Motumi Ramaisa v Patrict Ntsoereng and Another (LC/APN 2015)  LSHC 12 (27 February 2017)
- Motumi v Shale (C of A (CIV) 32 of 2017)  LSCA 12 (7 December 2018)
- Mphutlane v Seoli and Others (LC/APN 2014)  LSHC 98 (25 November 2014)
- Mpobole v Letoao and Others (CIV/APN 475 of 2011)  LSCA 43 (19 October 2012)
- Nkholi and Others v Nkholi (C of A (CIV) 47 of 14)  LSCA 28 (7 August 2015)
- Ntsu Nts'onyane v Motlatsi Thejane and Others (LC/APN 2013)  LSHC 11 (17 March 2017)
- Ramabusetsa and Others v Masakale and Another (LC/APN 92 of 2013)  LSHC 8 (26 February 2015)
- Ratia v Ratia (CIV/APN 329 of 14)  LSHC 58 (13 August 2018)
- Roma Valley Co-operative Society v Leseteli Malefane and Others (LCC/APN 5 of 2012)  LSHC 54 (5 July 2013)
- Roma Valley Co-operative Society v Malefane and Others (CCT 24 of 2012)  LSHC 43 (27 April 2012)
- Roma Valley Co-operative Society v Malefane and Others (CIV/T 248 of 2012)  LSHC 39 (2 August 2012)
- Scout v Nair (CCA/ 2 of 2020)  LSHC 59 (26 March 2021)
- Seleke v The Minister of Trade and Industry (CIV/APN 437 of 2020)  LSHC 67 (16 August 2021)
- Shale v Limema and Others (C of A (CIV) 53 of 14)  LSCA 20 (7 August 2015)
- Shale v Shale (C of A (CIV) 35 of 2019)  LSCA 45 (1 November 2019)
- Thibeli v Khosholo (LC/APN 15)  LSHC 37 (28 August 2020)