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I didn’t sell land to Lusanja people – Administrator



Kampala, Uganda | The administrator of the contested land in Lusanja Wakiso District has denied selling the land to its claimants. Paul Katabazi Bitarabeho told court that his sister; Chrispa Bitarabeho illegally sold off some land in Wakiso and land comprising plots 206 and 671 at Sekanyonyi in Mpererwe in Kampala District to the claimants.

He was testifying before High Court Judge, Tadeo Asiimwe who is handling two consolidated suits arising from Lusanja land evictions. The consolidated suits were filed by businessman Medard Kiconco against Lands State Minister, Persis Namuganza in her individual capacity, Kampala Capital City Authority and 148 occupants of the contested land.

Kiconco wants court to declare that the contested land belongs to him and the occupants are there illegally. He faults KCCA for failing to demolish property illegally erected on his land. He also faults Namuganza for overstepping her ministerial powers when she directed the occupants to stay on the contented land until she communicates otherwise.

Also in the consolidated petition, is another suit filed by Kiconco against the Attorney General seeking compensation. Appearing before Justice Asiimwe on Monday afternoon, Bitarabeho told court that when he got powers of administration in 2002 from his late father, the family had 84.7 acres of undeveloped land in Sekanyonyi and Lusanja.

He however, says he got a misunderstanding with his sister; Crispa Bitarabeho who illegally sold some piece of land to 17 people in Sekanyonyi. The same piece of land measuring 9.6 acres was officially sold to businessman, Kiconco. According to the witness, he tried to evict the 17 people from the land but they became hostile forcing him to step back.

Asked by the Judge why he didn’t sit down with his sister to resolve the family dispute, Bitarabeho told court that he chose to run to Grace Akullo, the Director of Criminal Investigations Directorate for advice.

He said that Akullo advised him to meet the occupants and they meet with Crispa to resolve the wrangle. The judge also asked him why he didn’t collect ground rent (busulu) from the occupants. In his response, Bitarabeho said the family was not interested in anything else apart from repossessing its land.

Kiconco’s lawyer, Richard Babu asked him when the occupants started selling the land and he said between April, 2013 and 2015. However, Kiconco was fully given all documents relating to the purchase of the land in 2016. Bitarabeho also said that in 2014, he instituted a civil case against the 17 claimants of the land and obtained an interim injunction blocking them from selling the land or developing it.

But he later withdrew the case due to frustration.  He however, couldn’t answer when he withdrew the matter, saying they should consult his lawyers. Earlier, the court closed the defence hearing of Namuganza when she failed to show up without any justifiable cause.

It was the second time the minister was skipping court.  Trouble for the Lusanja people started in October 2018 when the Nabweru Chief Magistrate, Esther Rebecca Nasambu granted eviction orders to Kiconco which led to the demolition of the property.

More than 200 homes and 540 people were evicted from a piece of land measuring 9.6 acres. High court has since declared the orders illegal since they were reportedly meant for the land in Sekanyonyi in Mpererwe and not Lusanja. The lusanja people have welcomed today’s testimony, saying it is sufficient to help the court come up with the right decision.

Source: The Independent 


Statement: The Energy Sector Strategy 2024–2028 Must Mark the End of the EBRD’s Support to Fossil Fuels



The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) is due to publish a new Energy Sector Strategy before the end of 2023. A total of 130 civil society organizations from over 40 countries have released a statement calling on the EBRD to end finance for all fossil fuels, including gas.

From 2018 to 2021, the EBRD invested EUR 2.9 billion in the fossil energy sector, with the majority of this support going to gas. This makes it the third biggest funder of fossil fuels among all multilateral development banks, behind the World Bank Group and the Islamic Development Bank.

The EBRD has already excluded coal and upstream oil and gas fields from its financing. The draft Energy Sector Strategy further excludes oil transportation and oil-fired electricity generation. However, the draft strategy would continue to allow some investment in new fossil gas pipelines and other transportation infrastructure, as well as gas power generation and heating.

In the statement, the civil society organizations point out that any new support to gas risks locking in outdated energy infrastructure in places that need investments in clean energy the most. At the same time, they highlight, ending support to fossil gas is necessary, not only for climate security, but also for ensuring energy security, since continued investment in gas exposes countries of operation to high and volatile energy prices that can have a severe impact on their ability to reach development targets. Moreover, they underscore that supporting new gas transportation infrastructure is not a solution to the current energy crisis, given that new infrastructure would not come online for several years, well after the crisis has passed.

The signatories of the statement call on the EBRD to amend the Energy Sector Strategy to

  • fully exclude new investments in midstream and downstream gas projects;
  • avoid loopholes involving the use of unproven or uneconomic technologies, as well as aspirational but meaningless mitigation measures such as “CCS-readiness”; and
  • strengthen the requirements for financial intermediaries where the intended nature of the sub-transactions is not known to exclude fossil fuel finance across the entire value chain.


Download the statement:

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Complaint against unprofessional conduct of the DPC Kiryandongo district for aiding and abetting land grabbing in kiryandongo district.



The Commandant,

Professional Standards Unit, Uganda Police-Kampala.

Dear Sir/Madam;


We act for and behalf of the Lawful and bonafide occupants of Land described as LRV MAS 2 FOLIO 8 BLOCK 8 PLOT 22 (FORMERLY KNOWN AS RANCH 22).

Our Clients are residents of Nyamutende Village, Kitwara Parish in Kiryandongo District where they have lived for more than 30 years and sometime in 2017, they applied for a lease of the said Land to Kiryandongo District Land Board through the Directorate of Land Matters State House.

As they were still awaiting their Application to be processed, they were shocked to establish that the said land had been instead leased to and registered in the names of Isingoma Julius, Mwesige Simon, John Musokota William, Tumusiime Gerald, Wabwire Messener Gabriel, Ocema Richard and Wilson Shikhama, some of whom were not known to the Complainants. A copy of the Search is attached hereto

Our clients protested the above action and appealed to relevant offices, but were shocked to discover that the above persons had gone ahead and sold the same to a one Maseruka Robert.

Aggrieved by these actions, the Complainants appealed to the RDC who advised them to institute proceedings against the said persons, and assigned them a one Mbabazi Samuel to assist them to that effect. The said Mbabazi accordingly filed Civil Suit Noa 46 of 2019 against tne said registered proprietors at Masindi High Court challenging the illegal and fraudulent registration, sale and transfer of the subject land to Maseruka Robert.

While awaiting the progress of the case mentioned hereinabove, the Complainants were surprised to find that the said Mbabazi, instead of assisting them, he went into a consent settling the said suit on their behalf without their knowledge or consent. A copy of the Consent is attached hereto.

Among the terms of the said consent Judgment was that the residents would be compensated without specifying how much and would in return vacate the Land.

As if that was not enough, Maseruka Robert and Mbabazi Samuel are going ahead to execute the said Consent Judgment by forcefully evicting the occupants without compensation which has prompted the complainants to challenge the said Consent by applying for its review and setting aside at Masindi High Court which is coming up for hearing on the 29th March 2023. A copy of the Application is attached hereto.

Sensing the imminent threat of eviction, we also filed an application for interim stay of execution of the said consent to avoid rendering their application for review nugatory but unfortunately the same could not be heard on the date it was fixed for hearing (6th February 2023). A copy of the Application is attached hereto

On Thursday last week, three tractors being operated by 6 workers of a one Mbabazi Samuel [the very person who had been entrusted to represent our Clients to secure their Land through Civil Suit No.46 of 2019] encroached close to 50 acres of our Clients’ land and started ploughing it but our Client’s protested and chased them away.

We have however been shocked to receive information from our Clients that on Sunday at Mid night, 3 police patrols invaded the community in the night and arrested community members; Mulenje Jack, Steven Kagyenji, Mulekwa David, Ntambala Geoffrey, Tumukunde Isaac 15 years, Kanunu Innocent, Mukombozi Frank, Kuzara, Rwamunyankole Enock, and took them to Kiryandongo Police Station where they are currently detained.

We strongly protest the illegal arrests and detention of our Clients as this is a carefully orchestrated land grabbing scheme by Maseruka Robert and Mbabazi Samuel who are  receiving support from the DPC Kiryandongo.

The purpose of this Letter therefore is to request your good office to investigate the misconduct, abuse of office and unprofessionalism of the said DPC Kiryandongo District and all his involvement in the land grabbing schemes on land formerly known as Ranch 22.

Looking forward to your urgent intervention,

C.C The Head Police Land Protection Unit Police Head Quarters Naguru

CC The RDC Kiryandongo District

CC The Chairman LCVKityadongo District

CC The Regional Police CommanderAlbertine Region

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The Executive Director of Witness Radio Uganda talks about the role played by Witness Radio in protecting communities affected by large-scale agribusinesses in Kiryandongo district in an interview with the ILC.



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