By Robert Atuhairwe
Gunfire rocked Rwamutonga village in Bugambe Sub-County, Hoima district, as police evicted residents from the land claimed by a businessman.
Police said it was implementing a High Court order to evict over 300 residents from the land claimed by Joshua Tibagwa, a Hoima businessman.
Tibagwa and the residents have been feuding over a 500-acre piece of land for more than two decades.
The eviction carried out by Deo Karatunga Bailiffs started on Monday at 8:00am as police demolished and burnt down the residents’ houses in order to force them away.
They also shot several bullets in the air to scare away some of the residents who wanted to attack them with machetes, arrows and burn police vehicles that were parked on the roadside as the other police officers conducted the operation.
Benard Akankwasa, the Hoima district police commander said the Masindi High Court order dated August 18, was a warrant of vacant possession of land and demolition of any structures on it.
The civil suit was between Joshua Tibagwa and his daughter Robinah Kusiima versus Robert Bansigaraho and the district land board.
Akankwasa said Tibagwa, was allowed by court to possess the land vacant.
Speaking to journalists shortly after, Alex Ochir, 32, a father of three one of the residents accused police of using excessive force against them.
Ochir, denied reports that the residents charged at the police. “There is no way police could escape injuries, if arrows were aimed at them, as claimed they are just covering up for the tycoon,” he added.
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Over 300 evicted in Hoima, houses torched