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Kawaala Residents Sue KCCA Over Lubigi Evictions :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Kawaala Residents Sue KCCA Over Lubigi Evictions

The group led by one Stephen Lubanza says is claiming legal ownership of the land located at Kawaala Zone 11 in Kasubi Parish, on which Kampala Capital City Authority is threatening to evict them.
12 Jan 2021 17:05
One of the affected residents Christine Namaala addressing journalists at High Court as other evictees look on.

Audio 2

At least 74 people have petitioned the High Court in Kampala over a pending eviction from a piece of land near the Lubigi Drainage Channel.  

The group led by one Stephen Lubanza says is claiming legal ownership of the land located at Kawaala Zone 11 in Kasubi Parish, on which Kampala Capital City Authority is threatening to evict them.   

The Authority issued a notice of eviction to more than 300 families last month, to allow the expansion of the Lubigi Drainage channel, a 175 million venture implemented under the Second Kampala Institutional and Infrastructure Development Project. The project involves the expansion and construction of a 2.5Km long Lubigi Drainage Channel that forms part of the eight primary channels in Kampala. 

But the petitioners say that the procedure under which the decision to displace them was reached is erroneous. They allege that on December 3 2020, KCCA through its Building Inspector/Physical Planner, served them with a notice requiring them to remove all structures and halt the ongoing construction works within 28-days without giving them a hearing.  

The notices signed by Faridah Kiggwe on behalf of the KCCA Director of Physical Planning indicate that the Authority acted in accordance with section 72 (i)of the Public Health Act which empowers the local government to act in the event of contravention of public health rules, related to the erection of buildings. 

The USD 175 million project is part of the Second Kampala Institutional and Infrastructure Development Project, which, among others, entailed the expansion and construction of 2.5Km long Lubigi Drainage Channel that forms part of the eight primary channels in Kampala. 

Through their Lawyer Christine Afwoyo, the residents contend that KCCA is hiding behind the Public Health Act to rob them of their land without compensating them. They now want the court to halt the decision which requires them to remove all buildings and structures and halt any ongoing construction works on their pieces of land which were declared illegal.   

They are also seeking a permanent injunction blocking KCCA from implementing its decision although some people have already been affected. Ali Bukenya, one of the affected residents alleges that their crops were slashed and property destroyed last week, an act that left his family destitute. 

//Cue in;  "Banamawulire mwandaba bulungi...

Cue Out... Nabumenyi bwa mateeka.”//   

The residents are also seeking general damages for loss and inconvenience caused to them arguing that the Authority got money to compensate them.

Christine Namala, another of the affected citizens, says that he has been at the said place since 1968 at a time when there was no sewerage channel. She adds that when the channel was eventually put there, it passed through their land, albeit without compensation. She adds that the land in question belongs to Buganda Kingdom and not to the government of Uganda, which is enforcing the eviction.   

//Cue in; " Tuli mumbela eyo...

Cue out... ngatte bakomawo.”//

The Court is yet to summon KCCA to file their defence in this matter before the case is allocated to a Judge to fix it for hearing.

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