How Formasa Co. Limited Forged Certificates of Titles to Grab Square Miles of Land in Mubende
In the previous story touching the lawsuit 172 evictees filed in Mubende district, we told you about the lead petitioners, the defendants.
As promised, witnessradio.org now brings you the particulars of “fraud” orchestrated by Formasa Co. Limited, which is the 2nd defendant in an already ongoing suit.
It is alleged that Formasa Co. Limited “forged certificate of title for land allegedly comprised in Mubende District, Buwekula Sub-County, Block 61 Plot 37.”
Secondly, it is stated in the suit that Formasa “forged certificate of title for land allegedly comprised in Mubende district, Buwekula Sub-County, Block 61 Plot 27.”
With these two forged titles, Formasa Co. Limited claimed to be the true owner of the land covering the following locations of Mubende district: Butolo, Kaswa, and Nakasozi villages in Naluwondwa Parish; Namayindi, Kisiigwa, Bikonyi, Mukiguluka, Busaabala and Kendikyo in Kakenzi Parish, Madudu Sub-County, Buwekula, County; and Kicucuulo village, Kasolo-Kamponye Parish, Butoloogo Sub-County.
The plaintiffs, state that the second defendant therefore, through workers, employees and or agents unleashed all kinds of terror against them which affected them in the following ways;
· The destruction of crops of plaintiffs and other similarly affected persons, violated the plaintiffs’ right to livelihood and adequate standard of life, which is protected under article 22(1), 45 of the constitution
· Causing unlawful arrest and detention of some plaintiffs and other similarly affected persons, violated their right to personal liberty which is protected under article 23(1) of the constitution
· The violence deployed against the plaintiffs and other similarly affected persons; including the savage beating up of individuals and their families; cutting them with machetes, blackmailing them, burning up and or breaking down their houses, threatening them with unspecified consequences, threatening them with forced evictions, planting seedlings in their gardens, and the destruction of their homesteads orchestrated by Formasa Co. Limited violated the right of plaintiffs and others similarly situated, to freedom from torture, cruel, inhuman, and degrading treatment or punishment which is protected under article 24, 44 (1) of the constitution
· The entry into homesteads of the plaintiffs and others similarly situated, by the defendants without prior permission or information violated their right to privacy of person, home and property, which is protected under article 27 of the constitution
· The failure by police to protect the plaintiffs and other affected people from the atrocities perpetrated by the 2nd defendants is a violation of Attorney General, the 5th defendant’s duty under article 20 of the constitution to protect the rights and freedoms of the people
On completion of making a case regarding certificate of title forgeries, the plaintiffs goes ahead to demonstrate the facts constituting their cause of action as follows;
· The plaintiffs are customary and or bonafide occupants of land comprised in the following locations of Mubende district: Butolo, Kaswa, and Nakasozi villages in Naluwondwa parish, Namayindi, Kisiigwa, Bikonyi, Mukiguluka, Busaabala, and Kyendikyo in Kalekenzi parish, Madudu Sub-County, Buwekula County and Kicucuulo village, Kasolo-Kamponye Parish, Butoloogo Sub-County, Buwekula County.
· Many of the plaintiffs have always lived on the suit land, some of them since time immemorial. Others acquired land from previous holders who were lawful or customary or bonafide occupants of the land
· Most of the plaintiffs have registered their land holdings with the Buganda Land Board abd do pay busuulu.
· The plaintiffs lived peaceful on the suit and until 2010 when 4 people previously unknown to them, including one Henry Kalemeera Kimera, Paulo Kazuga, one Richard and another, visited the villages and laid a claim of ownership to the land comprised therein
· It was claimed that by the 4 strangers that Henry Kalemeera Kimera, the 3rd defendant was grandson of Daudi Chwa, former King of Buganda.
· The 4 strangers drove through the disputed land without prior knowledge of the customary and bonafide occupants of the suit land
· On 10th July 2011, unknown surveyors entered the affected parishes in the company of armed police escort without prior knowledge of customary owners and carried out a survey. In the process, they destroyed the crops of the residents inspite of their protestations
· Following this entry into their land, 91 customary and bonafide occupants complained to the LCIII chairman of Madudu Sub-County. In response, the LCIII chairman protested to Mubende district staff surveyor in a letter
· Agents of the Formasa Co. Ltd repeatedly threatened the plaintiffs with forceful eviction. They likened what would befall the plaintiffs to the fate suffered by the neighboring population of Kaweri coffee where people were violently thrown off the land without compensation or that of the neighboring villages of Kendikyo, Busakya, Kabangere, Karukyokaka, Kijuuya and Kiwambya, where FRECA, a tree-planting company forcibly removed people from land without compensation
· These instances of blackmail and pressure caused fear and panic among the occupants of the land. As a result, some accepted to seek off their land to the 2nd defendant at ridiculously low prices determined by it and then they left the area
· Having forced some people off the land, the 2nd defendant began to plant trees on the land of those who had sold to them. But they also planted trees on the land of those who had remained on their land and not sold it to them
· Among others,
Both reporting and editing by Deo Walusimbi