Hima Cement is in consultations with leaders and the local
community in Moroto to access surface rights. The company has held four
consultations with the district leadership, councillors together with opinion
leaders and the Rupa Community Development Trust, RUCODET, a community trustee
representing the people of Rupa Sub County.
Hima Cement is in the process of acquiring a Mining Lease for
extraction limestone and marble in Rupa Sub County. Hima is earmarking 14.26
square kilometres in the area.
Under the 2003 Mining Act, the company is required to compensate the person or
community, whose life will be affected by the mining activity. Under the law,
the department of geological survey and mines will only grant the company a
mining lease after showing evidence that the persons or community affected has
been fully compensated.
Don Bwesigye, the lead consultant for Hima Cement says the company has been on
the ground since 2015 when they acquired an exploration license which later
translated into location license in Rupa Sub County. He notes that the company
has established the existence of vast deposits of limestone in the area to
He says that the consultations are meant to empower both communities and other
stakeholders on their roles ahead of compensation.
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Charles Topoth, an elder in Rupa Sub County says that although the gesture by
Hima Cement is good, he fears for the outcome, especially at the compensation.
He argues that similar activities were conducted by other companies but the
community was left displeased due to the greed by some local leaders in the
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John Bosco Logwee, the secretary for publicity at RUCODET says there is hope
for fair negotiations since the company has involved different stakeholders in
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Moroto residents are still battling with companies over surface
rights, a situation that caused bitter working relationships with Tororo Cement
in Napak and DAO Marble in Rupa.
For DAO, the community contested overpayment of surface rights on
grounds that the money agreed upon didn’t reach them. The company reportedly
paid 800 million shillings but some of the members claim they received peanuts.
At Tororo Cement, the company didn’t pay for surface rights after allegedly
presenting a land title to the Commissioner in the department of geological
survey and mines. However, some residents protested recently, prompting Tororo
cement to pay landowners 100 million shillings.