● Bibanja holders Also Want Police Chiefs, RDC Apollo Mugume And One Ignatius Nyesiga Quizzed Over Aiding Land Grabbers
●Area MP, VowsTo Die Protecting Their Bibanja Rights If No Urgent Action Is Taken
● ‘Parliament will bite’, Hon. Mpalanyi Assures Angry Residents On Sango Bay Land Grabbers
NEWS EDITOR MEDIA
HUNDREDS of Residents who are bonafide bibanja holders on Sango Bay land in Kyotera District, through their area Member of Parliament Hon. John Paul Mpalanyi Lukwago have petitioned The Head of State Gen. Yoweri Kaguta Museveni against four popular cabinet Ministers accusing them of being the invisible hand behind destruction of their plants, setting on fire their houses, forcefully evicting and arresting of residents in a deal to chase them away from their bibanja.
These people have requested the President to intervene, investigate and sack the four ministers over disobeying the presidential directive on this land.
Residents want Microfinance Minister Haruna Kasolo Kyeyune investigated and be quizzed by the IGG on how he acquired over 400 acres of land in Sango Bay, where he planted coffee.
“These ministers must be investigated and get fired if found guilty of grabbing land at Sango bay. We accuse them of being the invisible hands behind ilegal eviction of residents, burning of our houses, destroying our plants and demolition of our properties so that they acquire huge chunks of this land.” Said angry residents during a hot meeting convened by area MP Mpalanyi Lukwago. They vowed to die defending their bibanja rights if leaders do not take any action urgently claiming to be the rightful bonafide occupants on this land.
Residents also named RDC Apollo Mugume, Police chiefs headed by ASP Matte Godffrey, and Ignatius Nyesiga (who claims to be related to the President and enforcing president’s directive), saying these act with total impunity as they aide land grabbers.
For starters, Sango Bay land is 250 square miles which is around 64000 hectares. In a letter written by the President, he directed that, the Sango bay land be surveyed, 20,000 hectares given to BIDCO U Ltd for palm tree planting, 2,000 hectares be given to Bukoola Chemical Industries and the remaining 43,000 hectares be left for the residents and resettlement for those who will have to move from the land given to investors.
In his letter, President Museveni further directed that the evicting of citizens should be done following the law. “The law mentions compensation and giving tenants first, the opportunity to buy and get land titles. This law is not followed. Look at the way we are being unlawfully evicted by frontman Ignatius Nyesiga without compensation. Nyesiga who brags around how he is untouchable because he is working for and related to the President.” Locals told Hon. Mpalanyi asking, what is so hard for Nyesiga to abide by the law and the president’s letter, instead of forcefully evicting them, cutting down their plants and killing their animals with impunity.
Residents told their Member of Parliament how Nyesiga is ordering bibanja holders from five Subcounties to leave without compensation.
It was also reported that these land grabbers use police to threaten residents and many confessed being arrested by police on orders of ASP Matte Goddfrey on trumped-up charges like criminal tresspass on their bibanja.
“The land was not surveyed until today yet the President issued the directive in 2001 through a letter ordering that the land be surveyed. It is unfortunate that RDC Apollo Mugume is in bed with this Ignatius to unlawfully and forcefully evict us.” Said residents.
A one Isaac Bigirwa told the MP that he has been living on this land for over 90 years. “My great grand parents settled here in 1933, this place is all I know, it is where I call home, this is the place my children know as home, so after evicting us, where do you want us to go? We are simply asking to let us settle peacefully on the remaining 43000 hectares. We are not fighting the said project and we can even still be participants but any development which is causing illegal evictions must be fought.” Said Isaac.
He revealed that Nyesiga and his people target their homes, farms and plants whereas safeguarding minister Haruna Kasolo’s 400 acres of this land where he planted coffee.
He asked MP Mpalanyi to consult the chairman Land commission and inquire about the presidential directive that was given, also go to the IGP Ochola’s office and find out whether DPC Matte and a one SP Kyaligonza John are working on his directives to evict people from their bibanja and destroy their properties .
Another affected resident requested area MP Mpalanyi to raise the matter on floor of Parliament and ask Speaker of Parliament to institute a Parliamentary Committee that will investigate Sango bay land bonanza by ministers and other top government officials.
He said, “We have been jailed for seeking justice, they don’t stop at that they destroy our crops and kill our animals. We call upon Parliament to investigate Sango bay land bonanza.”
Residents accused district local government leaders such as the LC5 chairman Kintu Kisekulo for ganging up with Sango bay land grabbers and conducting meetings the in wee hours of the night. Because of greed, some of the district leaders are busy wetting their beaks instead of protecting their people.
“In our bid to fail our quest for justice, some of the village councils refused to give us introductory letters because they have eaten bribes.” MP Mpalanyi was told.
Chairman Bukara A Mr. Ssenganda Eugenius narrated how people have lived on this land for more than 30 years. “When you tell them to leave, they have no where to go, this place Sango Bay is all they know and call home.”
“We were born here, our children are born here, well most of us come from different ethnicities but we have never been to other places other than Sango Bay. All we request is that the presidential directive be implemented, we are not against development of this land, but we want to be beneficiaries of the development, how will this happen when we are unlawfully evicted? We are ready to buy our bibanja and stay in sango bay but we are not being given the opportunity to.” Said, Subcounty Council Speaker.
‘PARLIAMENT IS READY TO BITE’, MP MPALANYI ASSURES SANGO BAY RESIDENTS
Addressing affected residents, Hon. Mpalanyi assured them of Parliamentary action warning Nyesiga and those bankrolling him to stay warned.
He said, last year, the speaker gave a directive to the two Ministers of Internal Affairs and that of Security to investigate Sango Bay land issues especially on the harassment claims and death of innocent people and report back to Parliament.
“Madam Speaker also directed the minister of land s to investigate and find out the lawful owner of this land. They are yet to report back but we are eagerly waiting for the findings and Parliament will immediately take an action. No one will be spared no matter who they are.” Warned Democratic Party MP John Paul Mpalanyi Lukwago.
He shocked residents when he revealed that, “When i looked for Ignatius Nyesiga, the man in the driving sit of Sango bay land wrangles, he told me about the developments government wants to make in this region and how they are going to benefit the region and assured me of compensation for the affected bibanja holders who have tax tickets since 1945 or show evidence that one was baptized in sango bay.”
Mpalanyi quickly noticed that this criteria was a setup to deprive people of their right to compensation because these kind of requirements are hard to get.
“If the president directed that 22000 hectares be given to investors, there are more hectares more than 40000 where Sango bay residents can be resettled and not evicted because they are bonafide occupants. We will make sure the President’s directive is respected.” Said Mpalanyi giving residents hope that no one will evict them from their bibanja without following the law.
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