Over the weekend, as she traveled to Kasanda’s Kitumbi Sub County, Lands Minister Judith Nabakooba spoke to the President via telephone link and briefed him about hundreds of families living in the 6 villages falling under Bukuya County which is represented by MP Dr. Micheal Bukenya. They were at risk of being violently evicted by unknown people or developers who (through their proxies in the Mubende district land board and area land committee) claimed to have become owners after the 44 year lease (running up to September 2021) for Drake Ndiwalana and Athanasius Babera Kaihura ran out and wasn’t promptly renewed or extended.
"The purported new owners, believed to have been professional and deeply connected land grabbers, claimed to have been aided by one of the beneficiaries of the late Ndiwalana estate to become the new owners.
Particilarized as Block 493 Plot 3 (and comprising of 1,214 hectares), the ULC had in October 1978 leased the land to Ndiwalana and Kaihura to facilitate crop farming and livestock ranching activities. The shadowy claimants passing off as new owners had secured the backing of both the Mubende district land board and the area land committee whose members are often accused of being inefficient and indifferent to the plight of the poor Bibanja holders. The ambivalence of the district officials had created plenty of anxiety prompting Bibanja holders to petition Minister Judith Nabakooba’s office.
And it was during her visit to the area that Nabakooba, a blue eyed girl of the veteran leader, delivered the good news from the President including readiness to properly acquire and title the 1,214 hectares for the Bibanja holders. During her visit to Kitumbi-Bukuya-Kasanda, Nabakooba addressed a gathering in Lubaari village where residents/Bibanja holders ululated as she delivered H.E the President’s message of solidarity with Bibanja holders.
MP Micheal Bukenya (of Bukuya County) was present and the most relieved by this pronouncement by Nabakooba because he was increasingly becoming clueless as anxiety-gripped residents repeatedly cried out to him seeking remedy. Bukenya says the residents were specifically intrigued and appalled with the indifference their district LG-level leaders exhibited towards their plight. In all this, Bukenya was grateful Nabakooba responded promptly upon being approached about the matter relating to Kitumbi impending land eviction. “There is no single activity on the land and we thought someone was trying to take it on behalf of the others. My constituents have been asking me to defend their land from being grabbed and I can see big light and hope at the end of the tunnel,” said Dr. Bukenya.