Horrible life for over 300 families evicted from Lake Albert landing sites in Hoima

A child stands in front of the makeshift papyrus mat tent after its parents were evicted from Songagagi landing site in Kibiro village. Kigorobya sub-county, Hoima District on Wednesday. (Photo: John Kibego)

More than 300 people including children, women and men evicted from the “illegal” landing sites in Kigorobya Sub-county, Hoima District are in dire need of relief aid.

The affected people were evicted by the Uganda Peoples Defence Force (UPDF) after government said they were settling in illegal landing sites including Kababwa, Songagagi, Mpetye and Kyamwaana in Kibiro parish.

Demolished huts at Kababwa landing site in Kibiro Village, Kigorobya Sub-county in Hoima District. (Photo: David Livingstone Ayebale)

The evictees who have currently pitched camp at Kyabarangwa fishing village in Kibiro village are going through tough times without shelter, food and clean and safe water.

Notwithstanding this, the displaced persons are working to erect makeshift tents and temporary houses adjacent to the escarpment.

Ms Harriet Katusiime, one of the affected persons says life is increasingly becoming complicated since they cannot even get out of the Albertine Graben to look for survival elsewhere due to the COVID-19 movement restriction.

The eviction comes as fishing for commercial purpose is banned, thus, badly affecting the entire business sector and livelihoods of the Lakers.

Voxpop: Displaced persons (Runyoro /Rutooro & Kiswahili)
A woman helps a man to thatch a house with papyrus mats at Kyabarangwa landing site in Kibiro village, Kigorobya sub-county in Hoima District on Wednesday. Credit: David Livingsrone Ayebale

The Kibiro village chairman hosting the displaced persons, Mr Godfrey Abigaba Bitagase, says that he is overwhelmed by the more than 70 displaced persons being hosted at Kyabarangwa fishing village.

Mr Bitaagase wonders why there is limited response from higher local leaders and civil society organisations to this humanitarian crisis.

Audio: Mr Godfrey Abigaba Bitagase, Kibiro Village chairman (Runyoro /Rutooro)

Most of the displaced persons are spending cold nights under trees without any protection against dangerous visible and microscopic organisms, thus, putting their lives at stake.

Others including women, girls and children are sharing the same Kyabarangwa Full Gospel Church with men and boys for sleeping.

Pastor Musa Okello, who ministers this church says that he cannot leave those people suffer when they can use the church building as a shelter especially when night falls.

Some women and children shelter themselves against the Lake Albert scorching sun inside Full Gospel Church at Kyabarangwa landing site as Pastor Musa Okello (in yellow shirt) looks on on Wednesday. (Photo: John Kibego)

Public Service State Minister cum Kigorobya County legislator, Mr David Karubanga, was last heard, while appearing on one of the local radio stations, claiming to have noted all the concerns of the displaced persons.

In his programme, the minister pledged to come to the rescue of the displaced people after delivering a report to the Prime Minister’s office.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here