By witnessradio.org team
For years now, she has hired high-ranking officers in the Uganda People Defence Forces (UPDF) to work as machineries to traumatize and forcefully evict thousands of poor households from 16 villages.
The villages include; Kirwanyi central, Kirwanyi East, Kirwanyi West, Nakasagazi, Kituule A, Kituule B, Kibalagazi A, Kibalagazi B, Kakkanembe, Bukyambuzi A, Bukyambuzi B, Kisende, Mulanda, Kituule central, Kirwanyi A, and Butayunja all sitting on 3.5-square mile land in Kirwanyi and Kituule parishes in Butoloogo Sub County, Mubende district.
witnessradio.org findings indicate that in 2011 Major Eric Kigambwoha based at UPDF’s Rehabilitation Centre in Mubende division was hired by Milly Naava Namutebi in the exchange of 200 acres of land once he succeeds in evicting Bibanja owners. Bibanja owners have lived on this land since 1947.
Over 30 UPDF officers from UPDF’s Rehabilitation Centre were deployed on the disputed land to carryout eviction exercise under the command of Major Kigambwoha.
The force committed human rights abuses against communities ranging from establishing a kangaroo court and a detention Centre, arbitrarily arrested and detained community members in ungazetted prison, beaten up communities and slashed people’s plantations, to coercion of communities into signing of documents that forcefully took away their rights as Bibanja holders.
The signed documents recognized Bibanja holders as seasonal farmers who would hire a small piece of land from the landlord for a specific harvest season. However, the agreed arrangement between Naava and Major Eric Kigambwoha prematurely ended when she refused to honor her part in the middle of the assignment.
Few months later, another senior UPDF officer Brigadier Deus Sunday posted at Kabamba Army Barracks based in Mubende district was brought on board and hired to carryout the same assignment.
Under Brigadier Sunday’s operations several atrocities including arresting community members who have been dumped at Mubende police station without their cases being taken to court and brutal beatings of residents took place.
Naava has been an absent landlord who surfaced few years ago with a land title under the name of Henry Kaaya transferred from one Kiwalabye.
Slashing off gardens aside, Naava has also been accused of forceful eviction of Bibanja holders without compensation, harvesting crops planted by communities found ready on top of fencing off residents’ homes.
She has led communities to face problems related to severe food insecurity, lack of livelihoods and children have dropped out of school because their parents lack what to sell to earn money to pay fees as well as feeding their families.
However, Naava got arrested by Mubende leadership and briefly detained before being released on police bond.