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Sembabule Residents Flee from Money Lenders

Samuel Wamala Kuwatanya, the Mawogola County Representative to Buganda Lukiiko, says the area has received an influx of moneylenders locally known as Kafuna. According to Wamala, the money lenders have taken advantage of the financial crisis in the area owing to the livestock quarantine to lend money to residents.

Audio 4

Dozens of people in Sembabule district are staying away from their homes to evade arrest by moneylenders.   

The prevailing fear is reported to be prevalent in areas of Ntuusi, Lwemiyaga, Mijwala, Nabitanga and Rusuguuslu sub counties whose communities are largely dependent on livestock and their products for livelihoods.    

Samuel Wamala Kuwatanya, the Mawogola County Representative to Buganda Lukiiko, says the area has received an influx of moneylenders locally known as Kafuna. 

According to Wamala, the money lenders have taken advantage of the financial crisis in the area owing to the livestock quarantine to lend money to residents.   

 

He explains that many people give out their properties that include homes and land titles as security to obtain the exorbitant loans from unscrupulous moneylenders roaming their villages.

Wamala says that besides charging very high interest rates of not less than 30 percent monthly, some money lenders also dupe their unsuspecting clients into signing sale agreements of their security and flee on failure to pay.

 

//Cue in;  “E ssaza Mawogola….    

Cue out; ….bakyagendayo.”//  

Wamala says besides losing valuable property, many residents have also lost their original National identity card-ID cards to moneylenders, which they later use to pursue defaulters for arrests. 

Geoffrey Muzunga, the Chairperson Nabitanga Sub County confirms that several people have fled their homes after their contemporaries were helplessly arrested over failure to pay back loans.   

He says the moneylenders entered the area as speculators and are currently taking advantage of the high level of ignorance and financial depression to exploit locals.        

//Cue in: “Abantu ky’ebagendera….     

 

Cue out: ….okuwola ssente.”//

Muzunga blames police for being used by dishonest money lenders to persecute residents for failure to clear their loan obligations. 

He however, says they intend to reign in on the situation by banning their operations in the area.     

//Cue in: “Nga abakulembeze…..   

Cue out; …..abakwakira kafuna.”//   

 

Sarah Arinaitwe, the Nabitinga Sub county Youths Councilor, says the problem of people fleeing their home is increasing, which has raised their concern as leaders.

//Cue in: “Naffe bitusobedde….    

Cue out; …..nga temuli bantu.”//    

The State Minister in charge of Microfinance, Haruna Kyeyune Kasolo who is directly responsible for licensing money lenders has advised the loan victims to file their complaints with Uganda Micro-Finance Regulatory Authority-UMRA for redress.