Residents in Nakaseke district woke up to eviction notice amid COVID-19 lock-down land eviction directives.

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By Team

Nakaseke – Uganda – Over 450 residents of Kasambya northward in Ngoma Town Nakaseke District are at the verge of losing their land after receiving a three days’ notice to vacate.

The land under the contention was allegedly leased out to businessman Nathan Kyozo who has started clearing the land.

On April 16th, 2020, the government of Uganda ordered a total halt of all land evictions during the ongoing COVID-19 lockdown and directed all local governments and security agencies to enforce the order.

Local communities testify that their plantations have already been destroyed as evictors (businessmen) have already asked them to leave but residents have told they do not know what will happen to their houses, and burial grounds upon the expiry of the deadline.

One of the residents identified as Richard Balongo Senjobe says they will wait to see what happens because they do not have where to go.

“I have been living here all my life and I don’t have where to go with my family. This land has also been burial grounds for our family. We need help to save our land”. The 86 years old Ssenjobe said.

Some of the leaders who spoke to accuse the three businessmen of flouting the legal procedures in acquiring land.

“We were never involved and not aware of anything. If Kyozo has the title to the land, then why not follow the lawful procedures in taking over this land? We have been here for several years and this is not we should be treated because we are bonafide occupants”. Another resident said.

Nakaseke district chairman Ignatius Koomu Kiwanuka has lashed out at the investors who he also accuses of bypassing the law calling for action from government to stop their activities especially at such a time when the country is battling COVID 19.

“We have been to several government offices, but we have not been helped yet Mr. Kyozo has already hired people to survey the land. Our appeal is to the president to intervene and save us”

The land in question has been home to the Lugbara community for quite some time.

In a telephone interview with Team, Mr. Nathan Kyozo refused to divulge details on the land matter but advised the residents to report the matter to police.