- In their complaint before court, the 411 affected residents contend that they are among individuals who were affected by government projects like the construction of the Kampala-Jinja highway and Standard Gauge Railway but were not compensated.
Kampala. Residents of Kito-Kirinya and Namataba villages in Wakiso District have petitioned the Land Division of the High Court, seeking to block the move by the National Environmental Management Authority (Nema) to evict them from their land.
In their complaint before court, the 411 affected residents contend that they are among individuals who were affected by government projects like the construction of the Kampala-Jinja highway and Standard Gauge Railway but were not compensated.
The residents who claim to have been in occupation of the said land for many years and even constructed schools and churches, add that they were shocked to read in one of the local newspapers a notice by government giving them 21 days to vacate the said land without being compensated.
“The plaintiffs aver that the threatened actions of the defendant are based on bad faith to evict them without compensation as it was planned by Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA) and Standard Gauge Railway project, more so that the defendant has been seeing and watching them developing the area for so many years without taking any action,” reads in part the law suit by the residents.
It adds: “The plaintiffs shall contend that they are entitled to compensation before vacating the area under the Constitution of Uganda, the laws that govern land acquisition in Uganda.”
Through their lawyers of Luzige, Lubega, Kavuma and Company Advocates, the residents want court to issue an order setting aside Nema’s decision and to declare that they lawfully own the land which they have been occupying since 1980. They also want court to declare that they are the bonafide/ lawful occupants of the sued land.
They further want court to declare that they are entitled to compensation before vacating the land.
They also want a permanent injunction restraining the defendant (Nema) or any other government body from evicting the plaintiffs without compensation and general damages for inconvenience.
However when this newspaper contacted Nema spokesperson Naomi Karekaho, she said they had not received any notice of intention to sue them.
“ As far as I know these people encroached on part of Namanve and the surrounding area, however if they feel there is something that they need court to help them with, it is okay, they can go ahead and sue,” Ms Karekaho said.
Court has subsequently given Nema 15 days to respond to the law suit before Justice Andrew Bashaijja fixes the case for hearing. (NMG)