Kabarole District Council Ignores Elder's Recommendations on Crater Lakes Deal

2196 Views Fort Portal, Uganda

In short
In 2015, Kabarole District Local government signed a memorandum with Ferdsult Engineering Services Limited to restock the twenty crater Lakes with Fish and gave it exclusive fishing rights for thirty years.

Kabarole district council has ignored recommendations by the Tooro Elder's Forum on the leasing of crater lakes in the district to a private firm. In 2015, Kabarole District Local government signed a memorandum with Ferdsult Engineering Services Limited to restock the twenty crater Lakes with Fish and gave it exclusive fishing rights for thirty years.


 
The memorandum has since drawn outrage among residents. Last week, members of Isaazi ly'Abaantu Bakuru Ba Tooro led by their chairperson Edward Rugumayo met Richard Rwabuhinga, the Kabarole District Chairperson and members of the district executive committee over the matter.      

 
During the meeting, it was agreed by both parties that the district didn't carry out adequate consultations about the deal and that the memorandum of understanding doesn't favor the interests of the local community.



It was also agreed that the matter be discussed in the next council meeting with a view of cancelling the memorandum. Despite meeting on Friday, the district council didn't discuss the matter as agreed. Stella Kyorampe, the Speaker Kabarole District Council declined to explain why that matter wasn't on the agenda.

 
Patrick Rubongoya, the Spokesperson Tooro Elders Forum, says the district council should treat the matter with urgency. He explains that there was a rush by the district authorities to sign the deal without considering the interests of the local community.
 

//Cue in: 'the MOU…
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Two weeks ago, some members of Isaazi ly'Abaantu Bakuru Ba Tooro presented the issue to the Commission of Inquiry into land matters headed by Lady Justice Catherine Bamugemereire.

The elders argue that the deal between the district and Ferdsult Engineering Services Limited seems to grant the company rights to the remaining twenty eight crater lakes and could be a ploy to steal public land.

Last year, residents neighboring Ssaka Crater Lake in Kichwamba Sub County dragged the district to court over the deal. The residents argue that they were not consulted when the deal was being signed. The case is being heard by Justice Anthony Ojok Ayuko, the Fort Portal High Court Resident judge.

 

About the author

Emmanuel Kajubu
Emmanuel Kajubu is proud to have been the first Ugandan journalist to write in depth pieces about the Tooro Kingdom institution. His knowledge of the inner workings of the Tooro Kingdom is what made him privy to the splits in the royal family. These splits almost challenged Tooro Omukama Oyo Nyimba Iguru's reign.

Culture, agriculture and the environment are just two areas of many of interest to Kajubu. As long as he has held a pen, Kajubu has also written about public policy, health and crime.

Kajubu is keen on impacting his society not just as a writer but also a trainer and mentor. Bundibugyo and Ntoroko districts fall under his docket. Kajubu has been a URN staff member since 2008.