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Pader Residents Demand Compensation from UEGCL

Over 85 residents from eight villages in Angagura Subcounty accuse the power distribution company of delaying to compensate them for properties damaged while erecting electricity transmission poles on their land.

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Residents of Angagura Sub-county, Pader District are demanding compensation from Uganda Electricity Distribution Company Limited-UEGCL.

More than 85 residents from eight villages in the area accuse the power distribution company of delaying to compensate them for properties damaged while erecting electricity transmission poles on their land.

The electricity lines are being erected from Aswa Hydro Power Station, one of the proposed five power stations government is constructing along Aswa River in Pader District.

Power generated from the power station is expected to be evacuated via the Lira-Gulu-Agago High Voltage power line, a 132Kv High Voltage transmission line to a substation in Lira District.

Francis Ojara a resident of Deng A village says that poles were erected on part of his land but has never been paid.

The affected villages are Lacede, Deng A, Deng B, Libi, Lee-oyika, Bur-lobo, Laboto and Lalem in Bur-lobo Parish.

Ojara says he lost 60 varieties of tree species that include mango trees, shea nut trees among others which used to help him generate income for his family.

He says initially UEGCL officials promised to compensate people whose property was destroyed.

“I believe the trees destroyed on my land can cost about 7 million shillings. The trees used to help me because my family harvest mango fruits and shea nut butter from them, but now it’s no more, we demand to be paid for the loss”

Joseph Abola, another affected resident says he lost part of his groundnuts and 30 eucalyptus trees that were destroyed to pave way for erection of electricity poles.  Abola says he is now stranded on what to do alleging that because UEGCL officials have voluntarily refused to update affected locals on their next course of action.

“UEGCL officials don’t want to talk to us, they are instead only interacting with the local leaders who don’t feel the plight of those affected,” He said.

Dickson Okello, the Angagura LCV Councillor says so far 15 kilometres stretch of land from Aswa Hydro Power Station Dam were electricity lines started being erected up to Angagura Sub-county Headquarters have been destroyed.

// Cue in: “It has taken us five…..  

Cue Out:…. for their payment,” //  

John Israel Mukasa, the UEGCL regional manager, however, says the delayed compensation is because government valuers haven’t released the valuation report. He says that once that the valuation is conducted, the project affected persons will be compensated.

Geoffrey Largo, the LCV Chairperson Pader wants UEGCL to halt activities until the compensation woes are resolved.        

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