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Lango Leaders to Meet Museveni over Maruzi Ranch Eviction

The Legislators under their Umbrella group of Lango Parliamentary Group two weeks ago petitioned Parliament seeking to halt the eviction of local people who have for years been occupying part of Maruzi ranch land.
President Yoweri Museveni will meet a section of local leaders from Lango Sub Region over the Maruzi ranch eviction.

The meeting is scheduled to take place on Tuesday night. Among those who will meet the President include Members of Parliament, Apac district leaders, opinion leaders and among others.

The Legislators under their Umbrella group of Lango Parliamentary Group two weeks ago petitioned Parliament seeking to halt the eviction of local people who have for years been occupying part of Maruzi ranch land.

Already some 400 people have been evicted from the ranch to pave way for the establishment of Palm Oil production.

Government has allocated some 54 square miles for 50 years to Hill Side Agricultural Investment limited for palm oil growing and the work is due to start in February 2019.

Felix Okot Ogong, Dokolo South Member of Parliament also the chairperson of Lango Parliamentary Group confirmed the meeting with the President.

Okot said the meeting is about their decision to protest the eviction of some 1,500 local people from Maruzi ranch, Akokoro Sub County in Apac district.

According to Okot, they want the government to consider compensating the residents and also allowing them to continue using part of the Maruzi ranch since they have nowhere to relocate.

Last week, Lango MPs called off their planned visit to Maruzi ranch to ascertain the magnitude of the eviction and also the ownership of the disputed the land.

Tony Ayoo, Kwania County MP, Kwania District insists the residents must be compensated.

Ayo said whereas the land belongs to government, more than 1,500 local people who have been living on the disputed land for over 20 years should adequately compensated.

For two weeks, the UPDF soldiers and police have been conducting forceful evictions of over 400 people who are occupying part of Maruzi ranch land.

In September 2015, Lira High Court issued an interim order blocking Apac district from evicting the affected residents. 

Maruzi land measures approximately 64 square kilometres and has been a home to more than 1500 squatters since 1995. 

Part of the land has been allocated to the National Agricultural Research Organization-NARO for livestock breeding and research.

It is believed that government wants to transfer the National Livestock Research and Resource Institute (NaLIRRI) from Tororo district to Maruzi Ranch in Apac district.

In 2004, Apac District local government handed the Ranch to the National Animal Genetic Resource Center and Data Bank.

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