National
Over 100 mineral companies in Karamoja
Publish Date: May 01, 2014
Over 100 mineral companies in Karamoja
The First Lady and Minister for Karamoja Affairs, Mrs. Janet Museveni
  • mail
  • img
newvision

By David Lumu

The frantic jostle for minerals in Karamoja by companies has caused a problem of large scale land acquisition, a preliminary report by the Center for Basic Report has revealed.

Prof. Josephine Ahikire, the executive director of the Center for Basic Research (CBR) said that the concentration of mining companies in Karamoja has a direct implication on women rights and how communities interface with companies that have acquired land to establish mineral industries.

“It is not really about pin-pointing, but identifying communities that have experienced the large scale land acquisition problem and looking at how women are interfacing with the process,” she said.

Land policy experts also argue that the quest for land acquisition in Karamoja is raising a puzzle of land development versus the protection of individuals and communities.

Dr. Rose Nakayi of Makerere University Law School told New Vision that although large scale land acquisitions are not an accident of contemporary time, government must come up with a clear delimitation between government and public land.

Nakayi said that what is spanning out in Karamoja is “a challenge of international capitalist players and the desire to have Uganda develop.”

“Acquisition of land by foreigners must be explained to the local communities. Foreigners cannot acquire customary land, they can only acquire leases,” she said.

Eng. Simon D’ujanga, the state minister for energy said that ever since the country’s remotest area was pacified by disarming cattle rustlers, over 100 mineral companies have been set up by investors.

“In the recent past, we have tried to market the region and the country at large. We now have over 100 mineral companies in Karamoja and we are encouraging more investors,” he said.

First lady, Janet Museveni, the minister for Karamoja affairs is credited for championing the transformation of Karamoja by courting donors to invest in the region.

A 2011 survey by the Uganda department of geological survey and mines at the ministry of energy found that Karamoja has gold, limestone, uranium, marble, graphite, gypsum, iron, wolfram, nickel, copper, cobalt, lithium and tin.  The survey indicated that land in Karamoja is owned communally, which makes it difficult for the mining companies to identify the rightful owners for compensation or consultation.

Prof. Ahikire said that as companies begin to explore the minerals in Karamoja, voices of land grabbing, environment damage, limited information of land laws and marginalization of women are starting to come out.

D’ujanga said that land in Karamoja is acquired by investors according to the law. The Uganda Bureau of Statistics (UBOS) puts the population of Karamoja at 1.2 million people.

 

The statements, comments, or opinions expressed through the use of New Vision Online are those of their respective authors, who are solely responsible for them, and do not necessarily represent the views held by the staff and management of New Vision Online.

New Vision Online reserves the right to moderate, publish or delete a post without warning or consultation with the author.Find out why we moderate comments. For any questions please contact digital@newvision.co.ug

  • mail
  • img
blog comments powered by Disqus
Also In This Section
Dutch envoy tips Ugandan youth on jobs
The Dutch ambassador Alphons Hennekens has called on Ugandan youth to put entrepreneurial skills acquired from the high institutions of learning into practice if they are to solve the unemployment problem....
We will not investigate ‘most corrupt tribes’- IGG
The Inspector General of Government (IGG), Irene Mulyagonja, has turned down a proposal to investigate and expose the ‘most corrupt tribes’....
Climate change poses growing health threat – UN
Climate change poses a growing health threat, the UN has warned, saying extreme weather and rising temperatures could claim hundreds of thousands of lives and spread disease....
Ebola: Torn between crazy rumours and hard facts
The conviction that salt, for instance, combats the Ebola virus, is no mere fad in a remote northern village in I. Coast....
Museveni launches rural electricity project
President Yoweri Museveni has launched the rural electrification project to cover five districts in the western region....
Gulu bus impounded in Lira, passengers stranded
Over 40 passengers from Mbale to Gulu were left stranded when a bus they were travelling in was impounded by traffic police in Lira for breaching operators’ license....
Do you think the National Census positively contributes to improved Livelihood in Uganda?
Yes
No
Can't Say
follow us
subscribe to our news letter