King Oyo In Campaign To Save Kingdom Land

3235 Views Fort Portal, Uganda

In short
In his brief speech to the residents at Kidukuru trading center, King Oyo encouraged occupants on the Kingdom land to pay the annual ground rent.

Oyo Nyimba Kabamba Iguru Rukiidi IV, the King of Tooro has embarked on a campaign to protect the kingdom’s land. The kingdom has vast acres of land in Kabarole, Kyejonjo, Kamwenge and Kyengegwa district, where it derives money to finance its activities.

However for several years, the control of the resources especially land has been one of the major causes of conflicts in Tooro Kingdom.  Large chunks of land have been leased or sold off under unclear circumstances and the funds not accounted for.

As part of the campaign to protect the kingdom’s land, King Oyo has appointed a new land board, which will streamline the leasing of land and collection of revenue. The land board will also compile a list of the kingdom land, its location and size; provide accountability to the King and Kingdom parliament, the Orukurato.   

On Friday morning, Oyo also visited some of the Kingdom land in Kidukuru, Kachwamba, Kasusu and Bukwali, located in Fort Portal Municipality, where hundreds of his subjects have encroached on the land.  King Oyo was taken around the land by Steven Kaliba, the Prime Minister and officials from the Kingdom land board and estates department.

In his brief speech to the residents at Kidukuru trading centre, King Oyo encouraged the occupants on the kingdom land to pay the annual ground rent. Oyo said that he has received information that some of the tenants haven’t been paying rent for more than ten years, thus affecting the Kingdom activities. He also told them not to allow to be evicted from the land, as it has been the case in some parts of the kingdom.

In areas where the Kingdom’s land hasn’t been encroached on, King Oyo said that the Kingdom has secured investors who will utilize the land to build schools, hospitals and markets.

Steven Kaliba, the Kingdom Prime Minister said that there was need for King Oyo to know the location and size of the land. Kaliba says that some of the land which King Oyo toured is part of the properties the kingdom is demanding from the central government.

//Cue in: “the King has to know…
Cue out: “…from the central government.”//

Last year, Tooro Kingdom land measuring 650 acres that had been leased to Tooro and Mityana Tea Company Limited-TAMTECO was sold off. This was after an unidentified person got access to the keys of the registry at the kingdom headquarters and took away the title.

In 2011, the Queen Mother Best Kemigisa sold a huge chunk of land to the government as at the cost of 4.5 billion shillings.  The transaction between Kemigisa and government was questioned by Members of Parliament on the Public Accounts Committee.


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.