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Museveni now cancels 1989 Nakasongola land offer to Makerere University

President Museveni

President Museveni

President Yoweri Museveni has canceled the land offer to Makerere University in Nakasongola district following protests from the occupants.

In 1989, President Yoweri Museveni instructed the then ministry of Lands and Surveys to allocate 10 square miles of land to enable them to set income-generating activities and education multi-faced agricultural projects.

The ministry of Lands identified the five square miles at government ranching schemes in Nakasongola district and another five square miles at the Ssingo ranching scheme which they offered to Makerere. The ministry of Lands then offered land at blocks 9B and 9C at Buruuli ranching schemes located in Wabinyonyi and Kakooge sub-counties in Nakasongola.

However, to date, Makerere University hasn't yet taken possession of the land. On September 22, 2023, Prof Barnabas Nawangwe the vice chancellor of Makerere University wrote to the Nakasongola resident district commissioner asking him to convene a security meeting to brief them about the president’s directive. In October, Makerere University officials visited the land where they found that it was already occupied by the people.

Earlier on June 12, 2023, Nawangwe also wrote minister of Education and Sports Janet Kataaha Museveni informing her about how the process to acquire the land had dragged on and appealing to her to direct the ministry of Agriculture to issue an allocation letter to the university to complete the tilting of the land.

On June 15, Ms Museveni wrote to the minister of Agriculture asking to help the university to secure an allocation letter to complete the process. However, on October 27, the residents wrote to President Museveni asking him to cancel the offer and allocate Makerere University land elsewhere.

Through their leaders; Lugogo LC I Edward Katuramu, John Katwire the chairperson of Kabakazi LC I and Francis Bukenya the LCI chairperson of Nalubaale village in Wabinyonyi sub county, the residents told Museveni that the take over of land by Makerere would displace about 120 households and their 3000 heads of cattle as well as 2000 goats.

The petitioners claimed that they settled on the land 28 years ago after acquiring it through the Ranches Restructuring program led by former minister John Nasasira in 1995. The petitioners also told Museveni that some had already acquired titles on the land and developed it which was unfair to evict them to pave the way for the Makerere University project.

Museveni has now written to his wife ordering that the land be left to the current occupants and Makerere be given alternative land outside Nakasongola. According to his letter dated November 27, 2023, Museveni said that the people in Buruuli have suffered a lot during British colonialism and Mengo sub-colonialism.

He added that it’s the NRM government that rescued the Baruuli by giving them a district where they could speak their language for the first time since 1900, govern their local government, and if some of them have been the land they should keep it.

“By copy of this letter, I direct Prime Minister and Minister of Lands, Housing and Urban Development to get Makerere University an alternative land outside Buruuli,” Museveni said in his letter.

The letter was also copied to vice president, Public Service minister Muruli Mukasa who is a resident of Nakasongola district and chairperson of the Land Commission. Sam Kigula the LC V chairperson of Nakasongola district says that through Muruli Mukasa they have been notified about the president’s decision and they welcomed it.

“We thank President Museveni for recognizing the historical injustices against the Baruuli and this is a great step to enable us to acquire land as well as correct them. 95 per cent of residents in Nakasongola are landless and it was unfair to evict the few who rightfully acquired land titles through government ranching structuring program,” Kigula said.

Edward Katuramu the lead petitioner said that they are excited that Museveni received their complaints and acted swiftly to block their eviction from the land.

“It was unfair to force us to leave the land where we have invested so much and lived for years. We thank the president for being honest and ordering Makerere University to stop the planned eviction. We acknowledge the work done by Makerere University but they can get alternative land for their activities,” Katuramu said.

Efforts to seek comment from Nawangwe and the ministry of Education public spokesperson, Denis Mugimba were unsuccessful since he didn’t pick up our repeated calls.

This is the second time Museveni has given away public land to people in Nakasongola. In December 2019, Museveni ordered the degazettement of Kyarubanga forest reserve in Nakasongola district to settle landless households. The eight-square-mile forest reserve stretches to four sub-counties including Wabinyonyi, Lwabiyata, Lwampanga, and Nabiswera. Over 2000 people have been resettled on the land since the directive was issued.

Comments

+2 #11 kabayekka 2023-12-04 11:20
kasede certainly you have a point as you sit on the fence watching the history of Uganda.

It is even clearly shown in the Luweero bush and forest civil war media of the Luweero triangle. King Mutebi gracing the occassion of inviting Museveni and his international mercenaries to roam the lands of the Ganda fraternity and Kingdom state.

However, one understands that these immigrant and vicious African mercenaries have for 40 years broken every part of the written agreement that was negotiated on as it was with colonial Britain, Obote 1, Obote 2, Amin, Lule, Tito Okello, Muwanga, Ssemwogerere, and many more of the historical aspiring governors of Uganda!
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