Kikuube residents reclaim land from grabbers

A section of residents from four villages in Kabwoya Sub-county, Kikuube District sit at a function to reclaim their land. (Credit: Gad Asaba).

Thirty land owners and more than 2, 000 others who lost their land to Kabango Farmers’ Association grabbers in Kabwoya Sub-county, Kikuube District have finally regained it.

Residents from four villages including Ikoba, Kabango, Kyarulyaka and Kiryasojo had been battling court cases for five years accusing Kabango Farmers’ Association of grabbing their big chunk of land.

The residents recovered their land through mediation efforts engineered by political leaders and Justice Centres Uganda (JCU) at a function held at Kabango primary school premises in Kabwoya sub-county.

Taking place on January 12, 2021, the function saw the outgoing Resident District Commissioner (RDC) Richard Tabaaro, head the handover advising the people of Kikuube district to always seek legal redress from courts of law to solve their challenges.

The RDC also urged them to desist from involving tribal intolerance in land matters in addition to stop electing and ostracise leaders who abet land grabbing for they cause social and financial volatility in society including displacements from ancestral lands.

Mr Tabaaro said people with unsocial behaviour towards other people’s pieces of land should be handled with an iron hand for peace and tranquility to thrive in the district.

During the function, 30 people received land titles.   

Outgoing Kikuube Resident District Commissioner (RDC), Richard Tabaaro. (Photo credit : Gad Asaba)

The Ikoba Village Chairman who was one of those who received a land title, Bamwenda Bagirensi, said it took him two years to realise that his land on which he had settled for 25 years had been secretly surveyed and titled by Kabango Farmers’ Association.

He urged higher government authorities to always intervene and salvage the poor from being tormented and harassed by land grabbing magnates.

Audio: Bagirensi on land grabbing (Runyoro/Rutooro)

The Kabwoya Sub-county LC 3 Chairman, Steven Buryahika, called for cooperation between political leaders and the residents while handling matters that affect the local people adding that there were many land titles that were allegedly acquired illegally.

He said such land titles as those belonging to Kanjepo, Mustafa, Ndorwa and Kimera are in the process of being revoked since they were purportedly obtained fraudulently revealing that government is already conducting systematic land demarcation to save the poor from land grabbers.

The politician hailed the media and other political leaders for cooperating in the long standing struggle against dishonest land acquisition in the district.

Audio: Buryahika on land grabbing (Runyankole/Rukiga)
A section of women sit as the function to reclaim land goes on at Kabango primary school in Kabwoya Sub-county, Kikuube District. (Photo credit: Gad Asaba).

The outgoing area Member of Parliament, Daniel Muhairwe Mpamizo, warned land grabbers against the act vowing to fight the vice to the end.

Audio: Muhairwe on land grabbing (English)

The numbers

More than 120 people registered to get land titles but 30 land titles have so far been produced and handed over in the first phase as more are being processed to be released soon.

Kabango Farmers’ Association has 580 acres of land that were legally surveyed but overlapped its interests by surveying 800 acres belonging to the residents.

 2, 000 homesteads had their land illegitimately surveyed in four villages.

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