State Minister for Public Service, David Karubanga, has said the issue of Bugoma forest giveaway is too complex for Bunyoro Members of Parliament and local government leaders to address though it has turned out to be a major demand ahead of all leaders in Bunyoro.
According to Mr Karubanga who is also the Member of Parliament for Kigorobya County in Hoima District, there is need for direct engagement with President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni Tibuhaburwa if the forest is to be saved.
His statement comes as the Save Bugoma Campaigners are soliciting signatures from the forest neighbourhood to petition the president over the Bugoma Central Forest Reserve facing serious destruction by Hoima Sugar Limited being protected by the national forces.
Local leaders and Bunyoro Kitara kingdom leadership have since 2017 been blamed for silence as the forest faces a threat of massive destruction by the sugarcane growing investors.
Now, Mr Karubanga also challenges all the kingdom subjects to get up and join efforts to petition the president because the issue of conservation affects all people without discrimination including those of Bunyoro and Uganda in general since environmental matters are cross cutting.
According to him, if it requires collecting money to refund to the investor as a solution to the longstanding conflict, mechanisms can be put in place to do so.
However, he says the issue of Bugoma forest is currently further complicated by the presence of court judgements and ongoing suits against different government entities and the kingdom.
“Uganda is a law abiding country and so the law must be respected by everyone as we look around to petitions to save the forest. As a leader from Bunyoro, I would not like even a single tree to be cut down,” said Mr Karubanga.