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Residents Protest Eviction from Forest Reserve in Mayuge :: Uganda Radionetwork
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Residents Protest Eviction from Forest Reserve in Mayuge

This week, NFA embarked on the eviction of illegal settlers in the three villages of Bugoya B, Bukalenzi, and Nantamu villages, from Busoga South forest reserve.
A group of youths block the Mayuge-Bugadde road, in Bukalenzi village, in Kityerera sub county, in Mayuge district.

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More than 300 residents in Kityerera sub-county, in Mayuge district have protested the eviction by the National Forestry Authority-NFA from a forest reserve. 

This week, NFA embarked on the eviction of illegal settlers in the three villages of Bugoya B, Bukalenzi, and Nantamu villages, from Busoga South forest reserve.   The residents accuse NFA of failure to issue eviction notices. 

On Friday, the residents burnt old tyres, tree logs, and other items in the middle of the road, paralyzing traffic along the Mayuge-Bugadde-Bwondha road. The road links most of the landing sites and island communities to Mayuge town council.'

The protestors insist that, unless NFA allocates them alternative land, they will not vacate. 

Led by Yusuf Ndhoga, the residents said that they have lived on the same land for about a decade. They also claim that NFA wants to allocate the land to large-scale sugarcane farmers. 

//Cue in: "mayumba gabaile mangi...

Cue out...twatandika okubona bona,".

Asuman Semeyi, says that during the eviction, their houses were torched and food crops destroyed.  Semeyi also accused their leaders of looking on as they were being evicted. 

//Cue in: "iwe' bwosimba ebigogo...

Cue out...abe' bikado,".

Hajjirah Namaganda, another resident says that a joint team of security personnel forced her out of the house at around 5:30 am.

//Cue in: "abajjasi bwe' baidye...

Cue out...muteme nhi' duuma,".

NFA's tree planting manager in South Busoga forest reserve, Michael Okot said that they have teamed up with security personnel to effect evictions of illegal settlers in the forest reserve conservation area.

Okot, however, denied any human rights abuses and torture claims by the residents.  

The Deputy Resident District Commissioner of Mayuge, Hamis Kiganira said that the residents settled in the protected areas between November 2023 and March 2024 and were told to vacate, but they declined, prompting forceful eviction.

Kiganira adds that the operations are ongoing for the next two months and illegal settlers are being encouraged to peacefully vacate before forceful evictions.

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