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How Namyalo exposed land ‘mafias’ and rescued over 4000 Nakawa residents from eviction

Hajjat Hadijah Namyalo, the head of the Office of the National Chairman (ONC), speaking to disgruntled residents on January 18

Kampala, (UG): The State House Anti-corruption Unit (SHACU) is currently investigating a land dispute covering over five acres in three villages of Banda B (Nakawa Division), Kinawataka, and Kiganda in Kira Municipality where over 4000 residents live in fear of an impending eviction.

The intervention of the State House came after the disgruntled residents cried to the head of President Museveni’s Office of the National Chairman in Kyambogo, Hajjat Hadijah Namyalo during her recent visit to the area.

The residents, more than 3000 in number through their local leaders told Namyalo how threats emanating from the serial city land grabbers and the Uganda Police Force, who claim ownership of the land.

Monitor on Wednesday reported that officials from SHACU visited the area last week, recorded statements from the affected residents, and halted the eviction, “until the ownership of the land is clearly established”.

“Yes, our team was there and investigations are still ongoing to verify the different claims on the land..,” Ms Mariam Natasha Oduka, the SHACU spokesperson told the publication in an interview, adding that they received a petition from four villages of Banda B, Kinawataka, Kiganda, and Kasokoso.

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“I appeal to the residents to relax because this is mostly an issue of dialogue and settling amicably, we shall be communicating for any new development,” Ms Natasha stated.

Residents’ woes

The LC1 Chairpersons from Banda B, Kinawataka, Kiganda and Kasokoso told the ONC Boss Namyalo last month how the eviction is being effected by Uganda Police accusing the Force of demolishing all their properties.

“Despite having stayed on the land for over 25 years, Uganda Police claimed to own the land and decided to use all the necessary force to chase off all the Bibanja owners,” one resident cried to Namyalo.

“We are living in fear, every day we see police moving in big numbers the same way they did before evicting our other colleagues, they go on threatening us, we have stayed on this land for the last 25 years. We are wondering why the police is claiming its ownership yet we have documents for ownership,” another resident said.

Responding to their woes, Hajjat Namyalo expressed a lot of disgrace about how the Uganda Police is handling this matter which involves the lives of more than 4000 women, children and the elderly’. She added that it is wrong to create internal refugees in the country unless the Uganda Police finds land to relocate the victims as guided by the laws of Uganda.

Namyalo also rallied the community to collectively stand and come up with a petition that would be addressed to several stakeholders in an authority-inclusive parliament and promised to bring their concern to the attention of her boss, President Museveni.

It is from this effort that the State House Anti-Corruption has now intervened to save the over 4000 residents living in fear of eviction.

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It should be noted that between November and December last year, evicted more than 400 people in Kiganda, claiming the land belonged to the force. During the protests against these evictions, one person was on November 13, 2023, shot dead by police officers.

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