Land eviction: RDC stuck with 1,000 people evicted in Kikuube

Kikuube

Courtesy Photo

Kikuube Resident District Commissioner (RDC), Amlan Tumusiime is stuck with more than 1,000 people evicted from their ancestral land.

The affected mainly women and children were evicted from Bukinda A and B, Bukinda 2, Kavule, Bwizibwera A and B, Kyeya A and B, Nyaruhanga, Kabirizi, Nyamigisa A and B and Katoma villages among others in Kasonga parish, Kyangwali sub-county.

They stormed the RDC’s office over the weekend demanding his intervention to resettle them back on their ancestral land.

The residents are feuding with Kyangwali Refugee settlement over 36 square kilometres of land.

Officials from the settlement and the Office of the Prime Minister have been feuding with the residents since 2013 over the ownership of the land in question.

In September 2013, OPM officials backed by the police and UPDF evicted more than 60,000 people from the contested land and resettled their Congolese refugees.

The residents were forced to settle in camps in Kyeya village in Kyangwali sub-county under very poor conditions where they have stayed to date.

In 2016 and 2018, President Museveni ordered that the evicted residents be resettled on their ancestral land.

To date, the concerned officials are yet to implement the directive.

This situation has compelled the residents to pitch camp at the RDC’s office seeking his intervention to enforce the president’s directive to resettle them on their ancestral land immediately.

Jenepher Owimaana, who was born on the contested piece of land in 1950 but was violently evicted, wants the RDC to intervene and ensure that they are resettled on their ancestral land immediately.

She has vowed never to vacate the RDC’s office until the government allows them back on their land.

Ruth Kyaliginza 60, who was born and raised on the contested land, says that life has become very unbearable following their eviction, adding that are left without any other choice other than pitch camp at the RDC’s office to compel the government to take them back to their ancestral land.

Jackson Kyomukama, another evicted resident explains that he was chased from his land even after processing a title.

James Sanyu, the Kasonga LC 2 Chairperson who has also joined the aggrieved residents at RDC’s office, says that there is a need for the government to immediately intervene and have the affected residents resettled on their ancestral land.

According to Sanyu, they are not ready to vacate the RDC’s office until justice prevails.

He wondered why the affected people were evicted from their ancestral land to give room for refugees.

Amlan Tumusiime, the Kikuube Resident District Commissioner-RDC says that the condition under, which the evicted residents are living at his office is appalling since they do not have anything to eat.

He says that he has already alerted the relevant government offices including the office of the President and Ministry of Land, Housing and Urban Development to urgently handle the matter.

Florence Natumanya, the Kikuube Woman MP Wonders why the government has failed to handle the eviction crisis for this long.

In October 2021, Prime Minister Nabbanja halted all the activities by officials from her office on the contested land.

This was during her visit to the area to assess the condition of the evictees where she discovered that some officials from the OPM and Kyangwali refugee settlement area had connived to erect structures for refugees on the contested land, planted crops like beans, maize, cassava, bananas and groundnuts among others.

According to Nabbanja, this could be a move by some OPM and Kyangwali refugee settlement area officials to fraudulently grab the land from locals neighbouring the settlement.

She ordered the Minister for disaster preparedness, the Camp commandant of Kyangwali refugee’s settlement area, Kikuube District Police commander (DPC) and Resident district commissioner (RDC) to ensure that no more activity takes place on the contested land until investigations into the wrangles are completed.

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