KABAROLE said Masindi district was yearning for development.
â€œThis was not my decision, but that of the district council and the security committee that I chair. The pastoralists have been told to leave several times. They canâ€™t be given an inch of land because it is not theirs,â€ he said.
Kabarole said the parliamentary committee on agriculture visited the district on October 5 and was also convinced that the pastoralists must leave. â€œWe met the committee, the pastoralists and officials from Mukwano and we resolved that they (herdsmen)vacate the ranch,â€ he said.
The district security officer, Obadiah Musimenta, said some people had deceived the pastoralists that they would be given half of the land.
â€œWe are investigating these people and shall charge them with extortion. They have made the pastoralists sell their animals,â€ Musimenta said. A total of 302 herdsmen petitioned parliament in September to restrain Mukwano from evicting them.
A total of 302 herdsmen petitioned Parliament in September to restrain Mukwano from evicting them. The pastoralists, who claim to be 2,000 with over 20,000 cattle, want to share the ranch with Mukwano. They relocated from Kiboga and Nakasongola districts in 2003.
Emmanuel Baingana, the cattle corridor development and management initiative coordinator, said: â€œWe want to share the ranch equally. It is a 62sq mile land and we are demanding a share of 31sq miles of land.â€
Mukwano Group chairman Alykhan Karmali said the ranch would be transformed into a modern agricultural enterprise.
The ranch manager, Mohammed Iqbal, said: â€œWe are ready to start construction of a modern livestock farm. The farm will process beef cuts and chicken for export to the Middle East, Angola and the DR Congo.â€
The ranch, he said, will be stocked with over 20,000 Braham cattle from Kenya, over 40,000 goats and one million broilers.
He said they will process high quality beef cuts and beef products, sausages and ham for the regional and international market.
Currently, Iqbal added, the ranch has over 6,000 head of cattle and over 1,000 goats.
Iqbal said the ranch would also produce high grade breeding stock, milk, milk products, sugar, maize, soy beans and beans.
Livestock production in Uganda contributes 7% to 9% of the total GDP and 17% to 19% of agriculture GDP.
Beef consumption in Uganda is only 6kg per capita, which is below the recommended 50kg by the Food and Agriculture Organisation.
Herdsmen told to vacate Mukwanoâ€™s land