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Court orders BIDCO to negotiate with Kalangala residents over land

By Vision Reporter

Added 16th October 2015 08:41 PM

Court in Masaka district has given BIDCO another opportunity to negotiate with the 140 tenants of Bumangi village in Kalangala district whose land was taken by the company.

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Fred Mukasa, a lawyer representing the tenants sharing a light moment with the residents of Bumangi residents at Masaka High Court on 14 October.PHOTO: Shamim Saad

Court in Masaka district has given BIDCO another opportunity to negotiate with the 140 tenants of Bumangi village in Kalangala district whose land was taken by the company.

By Shamim Saad 
         
Court in Masaka district has given BIDCO another opportunity to negotiate with the 140 tenants of Bumangi village in Kalangala district whose land was taken by the company.
 
On Wednesday, Justice John Eudes Keitirima, of Masaka High Court, set November 16 as the mediation date.
 
The Judge said in the event that the parties fail to reach a consensus, a verdict will be delivered on December 18.
 
The dispute arose in 2010, when the tenants dragged BIDCO to court, alleging that they were wrongfully evicted them from their plots of land and their property destroyed without compensation.
 
Fred Mukasa, a lawyer epresenting the tenants noted that BIDCO had initially declined to agree on an out of court settlement.
 
“I am happy that court has asked BIDCO to mediate and settle the matter out of court. November 16th is the date we intend to appear in court for mediation. If we fail to agree then 18th December will be the final judgement,” he said.
 
Mukasa added that all he wants is justice to the residents of Bumangi village, adding that the way BIDCO evicted residents from their land was wrong.
 
John Muyisa, 50, a resident of Bumangi village in Kalangala district said all they want is to be compensated adding that his house was destroyed and was never compensated.
 
 
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John Muyisa, one of the evicted persons
 
“I am one of the residents whose properties were destroyed in the process of eviction, yet I have been staying on that land for over 34 years. All I want is to be given back my land, if they cannot compensate me,” he said.
 
He also applauded Masaka High Court Judge for asking BIDCO for allow the mediation process to take place.
 
Gorretti Nalunkuma, a widow and a mother of seven children says she lacks food to eat since the land she used to cultivate on was taken from her.
 
“All I want is to be compensated or given back my land to continue with cultivation. I have seven children to cater for, since my husband died, we lack what to eat,” she said.
 
The land covers five square miles and is currently being used for palm oil production. 

 

Court orders BIDCO to negotiate with Kalangala residents over land

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