Parliament Halts Activities On Apaa land

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In short
Parliament has halted all activities on Apaa village untill president Museveni visits the area to resolve bitter land wrangles between Amuru and Adjumani districts.

Parliament has halted all activities on Apaa village until President Museveni  visits the area to resolve bitter land wrangles between Amuru and Adjumani districts.

In 2015, Government planted mark stones in Apaa Village in Amuru district as it demarcated the boundaries between the two neighboring districts amidst protests from Amuru residents.

Residents and leaders of Amuru claimed the mark stones were planted 31 kilometers inside Amuru district. More than 21 people were injured when police used live bullets to disperse those opposed to the demarcation exercise.

Two youths had their hands amputated after the scuffle. However to date the conflict in the area has persisted. In April, over 1000 huts were torched by youths armed with spears and machetes.

The land in question is 827 square kilometers.

Following concerns this year raised by Amuru and Acholi leaders, President Museveni pledged he would resolve the matter before Easter. However this is yet to happen.

During a heated debate on Thursday in Parliament, the Deputy Speaker of Parliament Jacob Oulanyah directed the Ministries of Internal Affairs, the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) and the Ministry of Tourism to halt any activities including evicting residents. He said the President would give a final solution to the conflict after visiting the place. 

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Moses Ali, the MP for Adjumani and the First Deputy Prime Minister called for calm from both leaders of both districts. He says since the President had promised to intervene, they should wait for his decision.

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Kilak South MP Gilbert Olanya says Amuru and Adjumani people have been living and working together, but the decision by UWA and Adjumani district to evict people has caused tensions.

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Acholi elders led by the Acholi Paramount Chief, Rwot David Onen Acana recently condemned the evictions of the residents in Apaa saying it was a violation of their rights.

 

About the author

Alex Otto
“Journalism that changes lives is my goal,” Alex Otto has said on more than one occasion. That is his career’s guiding principle. Has been since he was a radio journalist in the northern Ugandan town of Gulu in 2009.

Otto passionately believes his journalism should bring to the fore the voices of the voiceless like the shooting victims of Apaa. Otto tries in his journalism to ask tough questions to those in positions of authority.

Based in the Kampala bureau, Otto is especially interested in covering agriculture, politics, education, human rights, crime, environment and business. He has reported intensively on the post-conflict situation in northern Uganda.

A URN staff member since 2014, Otto previously worked with The Observer Newspaper from 2012 to 2013 and later the Institute for War and Peace Reporting IWPR based in Gulu.

He was the URN Gulu bureau chief 2014-2016.