It is alleged that the evictees who have since pitched camp at the offices of the Kikuube LC5 Chairperson entered the forest land after Hoima Sugar leased it from Bunyoro Kitara Kingdom and started conducting the various activities.
Wilson Ogalo, the commissioner of surveys and mapping in the ministry of lands, housing, and urban development says the boundary reopening will take two weeks and calls on area leaders, and residents to cooperate with the team on the ground.
Kyagulanyi who was addressing his campaign rally at Kagadi Model Primary school in Kagadi town this afternoon says Bunyoro has abundant resources citing the lake Albert, National park, Fertile soils and the natural forest that he says if well utilized can cause tremendous developments in the region but for the last 35 years the NRM government under the leadership of President Museveni has abandoned the region.
Rt. Rev. Archmandrite Constantine Mbonabingi, the UJCC Executive Secretary, says the giveaway of Bugoma forest doesn’t only affect the people of Bunyoro but the entire country as Uganda moves towards oil and gas production.
The move by the Kingdom has attracted negative sentiments from the public who say that the destruction of the forest which is a habitat for over 600 chimpanzees and migratory corridor for large mammals like elephants is dangerous to the country’s environment. The forest is a prime conservation and tourism destination.
Bugoma forest, which is habitat to over 600 chimpanzees and a migratory corridor for large mammals like elephants, has been under attack by criminal 'individual' loggers and sugar cane planters after the National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) cleared Hoima Sugar Limited to plant cane on part of the forestland.
The National Environment Management Authority -NEMA found 13 square miles, out of the 22 square miles, were unfit for sugar plantation; They were in a wetland and forest reserve, which should be conserved.
According to the residents, the heavy deployment is scaring them since they are now being denied access to the forest reserve. They say no one is currently allowed to step even at the entrance of the forest reserve since Wednesday this week
The duo was arrested on Tuesday evening few minutes after they arrived in Hoima town ahead of the peaceful demonstration against the sale and destruction of Bugoma forest reserve situation in Kyangwali and Kabwoya sub counties in Kikuube district.
The approved project comprises of four components, a Sugarcane plantation and associated support components including camps, administrative block, waste handling facilities and access road sitting on 9.24 square miles. The second component is the Urban Center which will have comprise of primary, secondary and technical schools, hospital, market, recreation areas, waste handling facilities and access roads all on 1.206 square miles.