My house is about three hundred metres from a highway and also extends from my house to that highway. A large portion of the land is stony without crops. Last week I received a notice from a government road agency informing me that in a lapse of thirty days the agency will be carrying out a survey for construction of a feeder road and that they will quarry gravels from my land and construct a passage through my land for carrying this activity. Is this not contrary to the laws?
The agency is operating within the ambit of the Road Act, No. 13 of 2007 (the Act). The Act allows the road authority or an authorised officer or surveyor, after consultation with relevant authorities, at all reasonable times and with proper assistants, to enter upon the land owned by any person for the purpose of ascertaining whether it is advisable for the public interest to construct a road on or over such land and for that purpose to run trial lines, make surveys and fix posts, stone, mark or object on such land. However, before entering the owner’s land, the road authority, authorised officer or surveyor should give at least 14 day’s notice in writing of its intention to do so. Thus, in your case, the road agency by giving you a thirty day’s notice has fulfilled the requirement of the law.
As regards to taking gravel from your land and paving a passage through it, the Act under section 19(1) gives powers to the road authority, with necessary vehicles and equipment after consultation with relevant authorities, to enter upon the land owned by any person in any place not less than 50 metres from any dwelling-house, and on, through and over such land construct a passageway for such vehicles, and may collect any stones, sand, earth, gravel or other material which may be required for the purpose of opening, making or repairing of any public road in the vicinity. Provided the quarrying of gravel and construction of a passage are taking place beyond 50 metres from your dwelling-house, the road agency is justified to undertake the activities.