Enock Ariga Marindi, another resident notes that the entire compensation process is shrouded in mystery, saying the ministry has deliberately hidden information from them. He says only a few have been compensated but no one can tell the criteria used to decide who receives the money.
Deprecated: trim(): Passing null to parameter #1 ($string) of type string is deprecated in /usr/www/users/urnnet/a/story.php on line 663
Confusion and uncertainty still surrounds the
compensation of Project Affected Persons-PAPs as the Works and Ministry gears
towards rolling out civil works for the long awaited multi-billion flagship
Bukasa Inland Port Project.
The project, which had to start in 2016, has
dragged on because of land ownership woes and compensation scandals.
Early last year, the Works Ministry released a Resettlement Action Plan for
over 2,780 affected persons occupying over 500 acres of land earmarked to host
the project in Kira Municipality in Wakiso district.
The Ministry immediately embarked on the
compensation of residents for their properties after a long struggle over the land
ownership woes, which delayed the project. The compensation was expected to run
up to January this year to allow the first phase of the project to start this
However, the compensation process is getting
more complicated. There are no sign indications that the project will start anytime
soon. Florence Awoli, one of the Project Affected Person, says they have
repeatedly pleaded with the ministry to pay them to vacate the area in vain.
She says ministry officials have repeatedly promised to pay them soon but
nothing has been done,
//Cue in: “I don’t know…
Cue out…loitering around.”//
Enock Ariga Marindi, another resident notes that the entire
compensation process is shrouded in mystery, saying the ministry has deliberately
hidden information from them. He says only a few have been compensated but no
one can tell the criteria used to decide who receives the money.
According to Marindi, it is alleged that those
with links to bigwigs in government have so far received the compensation
money. He says this might be a ploy to frustrate the remaining project affected
persons but says they are ready to fight for their rights.
//Cue in: “Regarding compensation of…
Cue out…and genuine way.”//
Some of the residents have also complained of discrepancies in the valuation exercise. They claim that some people with small
properties were shortlisted to benefit more from the compensation compared to
their colleagues with more assets.
There are also claims of ghost claimants who
were attended on the compensation list. Kevin Akello, one of the residents says
that to resolve the matter, the Works Ministry advised them dissatisfied
residents to file complaints, which they did.
She however, says that they have
waited for the display of the amended list since November last year in vain.
//Cue in: “Abakyala tuyia...
Cue out…baani bebasasudde?”//
Akello says that some people claiming to be from the ministry
keep on threatening them to sign for the amount allocated to them and vacate or
else they risk being evicted without compensation. She says the threats are mostly directed at
women since there are many of them in different zones of the affected area.
Tibita Muzaham, another resident says that
before compensating the main Projected Affected Persons, the Ministry
constructed the supply road from Jokas to the proposed Bukasa Inland Port but
most of the affected residents haven’t been compensated.
//Cue in: “Kati kubikyatagana...
Cue out…busente bwayo.”//
Emmanuel Mpaka, Bukasa LC I Secretary, says
they have been seeking answers on several complaints filed by residents but all
they are told by ministry officials is that they ''will address all concerns''. Mpaka says they initially trusted Ministry officials but they
are now getting second thoughts.
He explains that during their last meeting
Ministry officials they were informed that the works will soon start yet a lot
of residents haven’t been compensated. Reports from the Works Ministry indicate that
by the end of January this year, only 132 Project Affected Persons has been
compensated and given three months to vacate. Although the ministry requested
for Shillings 29 billion to pay off the PAPs, they have so far received Shillings
Waiswa Bageya, the Works Ministry, Permanent Secretary agrees
that the compensation process has some challenges. He however notes that they
are trying to resolve the challenges so that they get back on track. Bageya
says that the Ministry together with the State House Anti-Corruption Unit and Chief
Government Valuer have formed a joint team to verify all PAPs before they pay
off those without complaints and later handle complaints.
//Cue in: “They want us...
Cue out…ad advise us.”//
According to the Works ministry, Bukasa Inland Port will be
built in phases. The first phase covers preparation of the Master Plan,
Preliminary Design and construction of the start-up infrastructure, Dredging,
Pilling and Swamp Surcharging. Bageya notes that expect works to finally start
//Cue in: “The exercise is...
Cue out…should be isolated.”//
The inland project is expected to reduce transport costs and
expedite distribution and movement of goods along the central and northern
corridors. The second phase will see the construction of
Bukasa Port to the capacity of 2.3 million tons per year, shipyard and floating
This will be expanded to a capacity of 5.2 million tons and later to the
maximum peak of 7.5 million tons. The development plan is expected to be
completed by 2030.