More trouble is expected in the next course of days after Uganda’s Prime Minister Robinah Nabbanja promising to dispatch a team of experts in Jinja to establish facts behind the now controversial landfill situated at Masese I and II Villages in Southern Division in Jinja City.
This after the Member of Parliament for Jinja Southern West Dr. Timothy Lusala Batuwa raised the matter on the floor of Parliament at the way Jinja City Council officials have ‘romantically’ handled the 12 acre land.
As usual being a practical politician hence the title ‘chief fisherwoman’ bestowed upon her by her boss, Nabbanja promised to send a team on the ground which should not be later than next week.
Nabbanja rang the Inspector General of Police, Okoth Martin Ochola (OMO) and briefed him on the urgency of the matter prompting the Uganda Police Force (UPF) in Jinja who have been reluctant to open a GEF to the same to investigate whether some elements were involved in fraud during the now infamous transaction.
This after it became clear that businessman Isaac Tumusiime and the city council officials were simply playing games with exchanges of useless and endless letters while the health and security were under threat.
With mountains of garbage piling, some people were already agitating to take the law into their hands and the increasing rains was only exacerbating the situation.
The Jinja South Division Deputy Resident City Commissioner-RCC Mike Ssegawa has since warned that no stone will be left unturned and whoever is behind the mess should be ready to face it rough.
“As the office of the Jinja City RCC headed by Mr. Darius Nandida we have been pursuing this controversy land case for long. We have conducted several stakeholders meetings with the aim of rescuing the city land that has been grabbed by some bad elements,” Mr. Ssegawa said.
“On Friday, we opened up the landfill which had already been sealed off and protected by private security gaurds by land grabber….We shall get over this matter,”he further assured.
The saga which has dominated local radio stations and social media platforms has left many wondering what type of human beings are occupying political and civil service offices at the City Hall who seem to have forgotten the spelling and meaning of patriotism.
Former soldier cum businessman Tumusiime through his company God Will Agencies Ltd now has the title of the land which belongs to government in his name, courtesy of some politicians and civil servants.
Information available indicates that in April 2018, Tumusiime wrote to JMC presenting a proposal to swap the kasasiro land with another one outside the then municipality.
The well protected letter which was picked from a pocket coat of Jofram Waidhuba was read to the full council and the good now retired civil servant put back the proposal, meaning there is no official records of the same in the Council.Of course when the matter changes to a storm, the document will find its way to the file at City Hall where pockets of comrades in crime are in plenty.
On 30 October 2018, a recommendation was made by the Council presided over by Moses Molson Bizitu to follow the proper procedure in the disposal of government property as is embedded in the law. The procedures were not followed.
So no resolution was made to swap the land until the procedures were followed to the letter.
The fully packed Council was attended by 25 councilors and only Mayor Majid Batambuze was absent with an apology while 17 civil servants including an office attendant or assistant were religiously present.
In her communication under minutes number CL/JMC/895/2018 titled Address by the Leader of Government Business (Deputy Mayor Medius Asiimwe) as captured by the Clerk to Council told the council thus:
“There is an application that was received by this council from M/s Gods Will Agencies Ltd to discuss the possibility of relocating the JMC landfill located on Plot M23 in Walukuba/Masese of which a team of Technical Officers were nominated to make a study to enable Council to make an appropriate decision”
In 2019 Council got the land title for the landfill in the name of JMC but Bizitu and Waidhuba(who were great buddies)having thrown out Francis Byabagambi went ahead to sign the swap deal without following the procedures.
The then new Town Clerk Ambrose Ocen refused to sign the transfer letter to Tumusiime insisting Waidhuba who was about to retire should clear his desk of all pending issues he had been part of.
Waidhuba back dated and signed the transfer.
Incidentally the date on the transfer letter is before the Council even got the land title in 2019.
When the Town Clerk(Ocen)now the Mbale City Clerk got guidance from the then Speaker of Parliament Rebecca Alitwala Kadaga, wrote to the Jinja District Land board requesting that they don’t transfer the title to Tumusiime.
The determined Tumusiime rushed to the court where he secured a specific performance directing the transfer to be effected. It’s not surprising why Tumusiime is chest thumping.
Experts now say the battle has just begun and will take years in a protracted legal war similar to the so called Tirupati land which former Jinja West MP Moses Grace Balyeku is still clinging to.
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