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Clergy’s Lives at Stake as Land Grabbers Takeover Church Land in Mukono Diocese

Citing Kisowera parish in Nama sub-county, Mukono district, Ssebaggala, said that the illegal settlers started destroying and stealing church property including the two acres of eucalyptus trees which they cut and sold. He said that the squatters have also started selling off plots of land and erecting buildings on the land.
Rtd. Bp. Eria Paul Luzinda Kizito (left) Rev. David Kuteesa, the bishop’s chaplain and Bp. James William Ssebaggala (right) of Mukono diocese in the procession into the thanksgiving service.

Audio 5

The Bishop of Mukono Diocese, James William Ssebaggala is worried by the increased theft of Church land by purported lawful bibanja owners. According to Bishop Ssebaggala, several church projects have stalled in different parishes because of the illegal occupation of church land.  

While addressing the State Minister for Finance and Economic Development, Amos Lugoloobi at the scientific church service to celebrate the even years of his ministry as the bishop of Mukono Diocese, Bishop Ssebagala noted that some of the illegal settlers have threatened to harm the clergy and vandalise church property.

Citing Kisowera parish in Nama sub-county, Mukono district, Ssebaggala, said that the illegal settlers started destroying and stealing church property including the two acres of eucalyptus trees which they cut and sold. He said that the squatters have also started selling off plots of land and erecting buildings on the land.  

He says that the squatters turned rowdy recently and stormed the residence of the parish priest, Rev. Mikka Lukwago where they shattered his window panes and car before making off with a handful of property.

//Cue in: “Ekyewunyisa, ettaka lyaffe …       

Cue out: … Ebintu ebifaanana bwebityo.”//

Translation  

“I am wondering where these people are getting power to do whatever they are doing to the Church without anyone stopping them. Imagine panga welding men attacking the parish priest in broad daylight and no one of them was arrested.”

However, the squatters recently claimed in a meeting with the Lands, Housing and Urban Development Minister, Judith Nabakooba that the contested land belonged to their parents and accused the church of attempting to displace them forcefully.

In his response to the Bishop’s complaint, Lugoloobi expressed his dismay at the extent to which the alleged land grabbers are taking on church land. He promised to bring the matter to the attention of President, Yoweri Kaguta Museveni.  

 

//Cue in: “Ettaka ly’ekkanisa okuba nti …         

Cue out: … lirina okukuumibwa butiribiri.”//

Translation

 

“If Police and the army have failed to address these people who have caused insecurity to the church, I am going to seek the attention of the President whom I think will not fail to protect the church. Government in most of the times use church land to put up projects like public schools, hospitals and others."