New Bunyoro Kitara kingdom premier Jackson Kasozi Nsamba has pledged to fight for the return of the kingdom assets soon after officially assuming office on Monday afternoon. Nsamba was appointed premier two weeks ago by Omukama Solomon Gafabusa Iguru replacing Engineer Yabezi Kiiza who retired at the beginning of the year.
Nsamba was appointed premier two weeks ago by Omukama Solomon Gafabusa Iguru replacing Engineer Yabezi Kiiza who retired at the beginning of the year.
The 62 year old was handed the office instruments by Father Bonny Kyaligonza, who has been acting prime minister. The function took place at the Rukurato Hall in Hoima town.
The new premier said top on his agenda is to ensure the full return of the kingdom assets among them forest reserves and cultural assets.
Nsamba says he was briefed by his predecessors that the kingdom is unable to raise enough revenue and this is partly blamed on lack of full ownership of some of its natural resources which he says still lie in the hands of government.
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Bunyoro-Kitara kingdom wants the full return of over 300 square miles of forestland and large tracts of land given away during the colonial era. Part of the kingdom’s regalia and other cultural assets still lie in the National Museum.
Nsamba was responding to a report by retired premier Yabezi Kiiza that despite several efforts government has not fully returned the kingdom assets. Kiiza implored the new premier not to relent on the kingdom’s demand.
The former prime minister says several of the kingdom’s forest reserves have been depleted by encroachers because of poor management as the kingdom looks on helplessly.
He stresses need for government to de-gazette the forest reserves and return them to the kingdom.
Father Bonny Kyaligonza, who has been acting premier since January 2012, said the kingdom was heavily indebted, which he attributed to low revenue generation.
Although he did not give the actual amount being demanded, Fr. Kyaligonza explained that they have not cleared water, electricity and fuel bills. He asked the new premier to ensure the debts are cleared.