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Kigorobya Residents Welcome Select Committee Report

The families were evicted from their ancestral land measuring 438 hectares on February 13, 2019 when a joint security team comprising of the army and police raided the village under the guise of tracking down people involved in subversive activities.
Some of the houses that were torched during the brutal eviction in Kyabisagazi in Kigorobya sub county Hoima district.

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A section of residents in Kigorobya Sub County, Hoima District who were brutally and forcefully evicted from their ancestral land have welcomed the report of a parliamentary select committee.

The families were evicted from their ancestral land measuring 438 hectares on February 13, 2019 when joint security team comprising of the army and police raided the village under the guise of tracking down people involved in subversive activities.   

 What appeared to be a cordon and search operation turned into an actual eviction. Several houses were torched, garden crops including banana plantations, maize, cassava, beans and among others were destroyed with over 70 people violently arrested and detained. 

In March, the Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga instituted a select committee led by the Bukholi County MP, Guster Mugoya to investigate all claims of ownership on the disputed land, allegations relating to the identity and status of persons evicted and the involvement and conduct of security officers in the evictions.  

On Wednesday, Mugoya presented their report to parliament.  

The select committee in their findings faulted the Bunyoro Affairs Minister, Ernest Kiiza, police, army and Edgar Agaba for the illegal eviction of 300 families from their homes in Kirogobya Sub County in Hoima District.  

Among other key findings are that the families were illegally evicted and displaced from their homes forcing them to take refuge in nearby bushes, villages and Budongo Forest in Masindi district.  

Orgen Ngabiloyotho, one of the evicted residents says that the report will help them attain justice. He says they are still undergoing acute suffering since some of them are still leaving in bushes under harsh humanitarian conditions.

//cue in:”I feel very… 

 Cue out:…losing can reduce.”//.  

Robert Kabagambe another affected resident says after the report has been tabled before parliament he wants government to resettle them back on their ancestral land.   

 //cue in:”Nsemereire muno muno… 

 Cue out:...Nambere twa rugire.”//.  

Godfrey Kebengi also an evicted resident says all the evicted families to date are undergoing untold suffering calling on the government to allocate them some relief items. 

 //cue in:”Asanti sana kwa…

 Cue out:…turudi kwa fasiyetu.”//.    

After conducting a field visit, the committee observed that the cordon and search operation was "merely a conduit for the security agencies to hand over the disputed piece of land to Agaba, free from encumbrance." Agaba, who is a businessman in Hoima district, is accused of instructing people to destroy the property of the evictees under the watch of UPDF soldiers.    

The committee concluded that security agencies carried out an illegal eviction under the guise of flushing out a militia or rebel group and that there were high levels of unprofessional conduct of some security personnel including the Commander Field Artillery, Maj. Gen. Sam Okiding. 



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