200 families in Hoima, Kikuube at the edge of eviction

Women sit with their children perplexed by the survey of the land in contention at Kiziinga Cell in Buhimba Town Council, Kikuube District. (Photo: Gad Asaba).

Ever since the discovery of the commercially viable oil resource in the Albertine Graben, the push for land acquisition and boundary reopening exercises heightened among speculators and land grabbers leaving the affected residents in perpendicular uncertainty on the land they claim they have lived on for donkey years especially in Greater Hoima District.

Fear has not excluded more than 200 families occupying seven cells and villages in Hoima city and Kikuube districts respectively including Kyabaheesi, Kigarama and Buswekera South cells in Hoima city and Rwomubazi, Kiziinga East and West and Kihabwemi villages in Buhimba town council, Kikuube district.

The residents now live nervously after a team of surveyors claiming to have been sent by the Nyakaana Kabyanga family was recently seen in their area reportedly to reopen the land boundaries measuring more than 500 acres.

Mr Gerald Irumba Mbahinzireki, the Rwomubazi Village Chairman in Buhimba town council says that he was born, raised and lived on that land, thus, knows all the boundaries of the area. He wonders that he saw a team of surveyors surveying the entire village without even informing the area authorities about the exercise, urging higher government authorities to intervene.

He fears that there could be bloodshed if the matter is not taken up soon.

Audio: Mbahinzireki on land (Runyoro/Rutooro)

Men move to the contested land being surveyed in Buhimba Town Council, Kikuube District. (Photo: Gad Asaba).

Ms Margaret Kaija, 75, and resident of Buswekera South Cell in Hoima City was not spared. She says that her marital family occupied the land in 1967. She is astonished that the surveyors also surveyed her piece of land on which she has lived all her life, urging higher government authorities to intervene and salvage the residents from the looming eviction.

Audio: Kaija on land (Runyoro/Rutooro)

Ms Evalisite Kalikandi, an elder in Rwomubazi village says for all the 55 years she has spent in her marriage on that piece of land, nobody had ever claimed it until now when they saw the surveyors surveying it.

Audio: Kalikandi on land (Runyoro/Rutooro)

Our reporter contacted one of the Kabyanga family members who preferred anonymity and refused to be recorded and said that the family obtained a court order allowing them to reopen the boundaries of their land.

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