A 101-year-old man in Hoima city has rushed to the office of the Hoima Resident City Commissioner (RCC), seeking protection against his biological children.
He is allegedly facing death threats from some of them in connection with the sale of his house. He has cumulatively about 80 acres of land in different parts.
The aging man identified as Yowasi Barongo is a resident of Kigarama Cell, Hoima East Division in Hoima city.
He was on February 24, this year, rescued by police that found him and his loyal son chained by his children after allegedly kidnapping him from Hoima city in a heated dispute over house sale proceeds share.
Only two of his 11 children; Yaleedi Kyosaba and Jolly Kaahwa have remained in his favour against their siblings and the wife allegedly harassing him over his property share.
Reports on the security table indicate that Barongo has fled the home in Kigarama to one at Bujumbura Cell in Hoima West Division for safety.
“They just want to rob me of my property. I educated them with many having degrees, diplomas and certificates and employed but I don’t know why? They even don’t look after me,” aging Barongo tells the Hoima RCC.
The old man has told Kazi-njema’s Gad Asaba that serious trouble started when he sold his 50×100 piece of land located in Kiryateete, Hoima city at Shs130m.
Kyosaba, a loyal son to embattled Barongo alleges that the violent family members including their mother, Victoria Barongo, just want to get a lion’s share from their father’s wealth when he is still alive through controlling freedom of access and use of his properties.
“Our father had one time resolved to portion his land to each of us as his children but those causing chaos absconded tactfully because they want to share it against his will,” he says.
Kaahwa, a loyal daughter to Barongo has been disappointed by her siblings frustrating their father who did all he could to educate his children for self-reliance.
“I am also worried that the old man’s lifetime is being shortened because he has been highly digressed for almost two decades since 2006,” she says.
However, Victoria Barongo, a 76-year-old wife to embattled Barongo denies involvement in a conspiracy to deprive her husband of his freedoms to use his property.
She instead counter-accuses her son Kyosaba and her daughter Kaahwa of purportedly confusing her husband with the intention of taking away his property for their selfish interests under the guise of caring about him.
“I got married to Yowasi Barongo at the age of 14. We have lived together for more than 50 years officially married but I was disappointed to hear that he had sold the land in town without my consent,” she says.
According to her, Kaahwa picked Barongo claiming that she was taking him to visit his son Kyosaba but to hear that they were in property sale deals.
“Kyosaba Yaleedi and Jolly Kaahwa have never told me that they want to sale the house in town. One time, Jolly came here with a boda-boda rider and picked my husband and his belongings later one by one until they took his blanket and gumboots. We had lived at peace,” narrates Victoria.
She adds that another time Kaahwa allegedly requested her [Victoria] to sign a document that she never wanted anybody educated to read through but the old woman also rejected.
“She told me they were travel documents abroad that needed my signature but when I called my grandchild to read for me she rejected,” she says.
Adding: “I am a born again woman and I can assure you that there is no bastard among all our children. They are mine and Mzee Yowasi. I wondered when Kaahwa, one day, asked me to clarify whether none of the children is born outside the wedlock,” she says.
Wilson Isingoma, Barongo’s accused son, denies he plots against his father. He traces the conflict from when their father entrusted his young brother Kaahwa to collect rent money from the tenants of his 18-roomed-rental house.
“We are not blocking our father from enjoying his wealth in old age. We are condemning our two siblings for plotting to sale off the property that we put up to help our father in old age,” he says.
“We can’t allow our father to continue selling off all his property as if he has nothing to eat. The property sales are unnecessary,” he adds.
Badru Mugabi, the Hoima RCC, who formally received the old man’s complaint pledged to convene a meeting that will be attended by all family members to identify the root and a possible solution to the conflict.
“The old man has reached the level of threatening to commit suicide. Anybody above 18 years of age is not expected to depend of his father’s property. They should let the old man enjoy his sweat especially in his evening period of life. Imagine the youngest of his children is 35 and are all educated.” says Mugabi.
SP Frank Muzoora, the Hoima East Division Police Commander, says that he had once rushed to rescue elder Barongo and his son Kaahwa who were allegedly in danger of being killed during a conflict over family land.
“Mr Barongo and his son Yaleedi filed a case at Kinubi Police Station against nine other children for allegedly harassing their father. However they did not follow up the case until it escalated,” he says.
The relationship between Barongo and his wife Victoria started falling apart in 2006 when he complained of being undermined at the zenith of counter accusation over alleged extramarital affair, according to a source.
It gave way to creation of camps among the children whose consequences have just been escalating with hope remaining in government establishments’ mediated dialogue.
A simple survey conducted by Kazi-njema News indicated that 90% of the work time of Resident District Commissioners in Bunyoro sub-region is spent on attempting to resolve land conflicts.
Majority are small cases among relatives whereas cases that displace or threaten to displace big populations involve rich men acquiring land in square miles measurements.
Video: Mr Yowasi Barongo, SP Frank Muzoora and RCC Badru Mugabi.