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Injunction on Ibuje Rock Affecting Rwenkunye-Apac- Lira Road Construction :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Injunction on Ibuje Rock Affecting Rwenkunye-Apac- Lira Road Construction

Dickens Kennedy Odongo, the chairperson of all LC V chairpersons in Lango, says the Attorney General should intervene in the matter and ensure that the injunction is reviewed because it denies the community a chance of utilizing a natural resource.

Audio 6

A court injunction halting quarrying at Ibuje Rock has been cited as the major obstacle to the construction of Rwenkunye- Apac- Lira Road. 

On September 23rd, 2021, the Assistant Registrar of Lira High Court, Ssalamu Godfrey Ngobi issued a temporary injunction restraining Ibuje sub county and Matrix Lands Ltd from carrying out any activities at Ibuje road following an application by Sophia Okune, the Administrator of the late Hon. Joseph William Okune and Awino Stone Quarry Cooperative Society.  

Okune accused Ibuje sub county, two other defendants and Matrix Lands ltd, which was contracted to provide stones for tarmacking Rwenkunye- Apac- Lira Road of trespass. The injunction has grounded all road works to a halt pending the disposal of the application by the court.

During a site visit by LC V chairpersons from all districts in Lango sub region, Paval Kumal, the project manager at Sadeem Al- Kuwait, the company contracted to undertake the road worker, said stopping quarrying activities is a big problem for them.

Eng byte:

//Cue in: “About the rock…

Cue out: … affecting project.”//

After their meeting, the district chairpersons who preached about collective responsibility for the development of Lango resolved to petition the president and Attorney General over the issue.

Dickens Kennedy Odongo, the chairperson of all LC V chairpersons in Lango, says the Attorney General should intervene in the matter and ensure that the injunction is reviewed because it denies the community a chance of utilizing a natural resource.

Eng byte:

//Cue in: “We are also…

Cue out: … a genuine course.”//

Asante Odongo, the Apac district LC V chairperson described the injunction as absurd, saying that he is willing to go to the president to ensure that it is lifted to allow the road words to continue.

Eng byte:

//Cue in: “After a long…

 

Cue out: … district of Lango.”//

Some residents of Ibuje Town council have expressed disappointment on the issue, saying the hill is a God- given gift to the people and it should be used for the development of the area. They believe that when constructed, the road will not only benefit the people of Ibuje but the entire sub region.  

Vox pop luo:

//Cue in: “An pe atye…

Cue out: … transport bedo ayot.”//

Caroline Jobal, a resident of the area cited the slow pace of work and lack of compensation for some of the people affected by the road works.  

Luo byte:

//Cue in: “Joni ocako culo…

Cue out: … me puro gudu.”//

Lawrence Muno, the Public Relations Officer of Sadeem Al- Kuwait trading and contracting company explained that UNRA is responsible for compensating the affected households.

Eng byte:

 

//Cue in: “As Sadeem Al- Kuwait…  

Cue out: … is a process.”//

The issue of the contentious rock dates back to 1991 when the late Hon. Joseph William Okune applied for and received a lease to use the rock for 5 years. However, no extension was made. The sub county took ownership of the rock and gave it to Matrix Lands ltd for quarrying for the road works.

In 2012, Okune’s family sued the sub county, Matrix ltd and two other individuals claiming that the interests of the late Okune had moved to his wife as the administrator of his estate. In 2019, the court delivered a judgement awarding 10 out of the 80 hectares of land on which the rock sits to Sophia Okune and 70 hectares to the sub county.  The current injunction affects the entire rock.  

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