By Andrew Masinde
Traversing through the Bukasa wetland and forest reserve near Kireka in Wakiso district, the once green area is now bare. What you see are houses under construction.
The neighbors claim the encroachers are former NRA fighters but this is also contestable.
The encroachers do no entertain strangers on ‘their land’. They are very suspicious of any new face.
However, the question remains, who are these people and where did they come from?
Elizabeth Naluwoza who has lived in the same place for over 45 years, reminisces the good old days when the place was all green.
“In 2009, we began to see angry mobs attacking us. They slashed all our food and cut all the forest. They divided the land amongst themselves,” Naluwoza explained.
She added: “Now they have become a threat to the whole community.”
A resident who claims to have lived at Bukasa for 63 years said Bukasa is divided into four areas; National Environmental Management Authority (NEMA), Namanve Forest Rserve, Mailo land and Public land.
“The land grabbers took the Namanve Forest Reserve and NEMA land. They were from Kasokoso not from Nakawa and Naguru quarters. They came and destroyed people’s food and trees that they had planted after NEMA giving them a go ahead,” he asserted.
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Residents of Bukasa blame land disputes on war veterans