• Mon. May 23rd, 2022

UGANDA, Acholi Real Muloodi NewsNorbert Mao, the chairperson of the Democratic Party (DP), has embarked on a land rights campaign in the Acholi Subregion.

Mao’s campaign aims to provide judicial and advisory services to vulnerable people in the Acholi Sub region, defend the vulnerable, register land, and recover lands that have been taken from their owners fraudulently or illegally by the government, investors, and those with self-serving ambitions.

The effort also aims to sensitise people about land rights and policies and legal and rightful methods of acquiring land to prevent rural poverty and land struggles.

Mao, a former Member of Parliament for Gulu Municipality and Chairperson for the Gulu District, expressed concern that the people’s hardships and misery are not being addressed, but instead are exploited for political advantage.

During the launch at the Northern Uganda Media Club (NUMEC), Mao told journalists that land in the Acholi Sub Region, including Apaa Township in Amuru District, Aswa Ranch in Pader District, Maruzi Ranch in Apac District, and Lipan, Got Apwoyo in Nwoya District, is under risk from influential government officials and investors.

Rwot Collins, Atiko Muttu II of the Patiko Clan, said the Acholi people as losing their lands illegally and sinking in economic hardship rather than prospering.

Mao stated that his involvement would rely on the constitution. He said he would fight rationally, publish a book on land rights and laws, form a solid impartial team, develop networks, actively seek foreign aid, cooperate with other sub-regions, and plot a strategic plan.

He added that Acholi people are either misled into selling enormous tracts of land for a low price or compelled to quit and relinquish rights under the watchful eye of security personnel.

He further said that the people had lost faith in their leaders.

He said that his campaign team would be made up of influencers, professionals, and community members.

Mao’s participation comes when the Acholi Sub Region is dealing with a slew of land disputes involving private companies, influential people, and others, resulting from tribal hostility.

The Apaa land conflicts between Madi of Adjumani District and Acholi of Amuru District, as well as the Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) and National Forestry Authority (NFA) Aswa Ranch in Pader, Maruzi Ranch in Apac, and the balalo herders, are among the land conflicts in this area. The latter has allegedly infiltrated Acholi territory in quest of grazing grounds.

In response to the Apaa land dispute, Mao stated that he is already formulating suggestions to President Museveni, including cancelling the government’s land surveys and the unlawful border opening.

Other recommendations include:

  • Putting the community at the centre of issue solutions.
  • Requiring mediators in disagreements.
  • Demanding justice for Apaa’s people.
  • Tasking the government with remaining impartial inland concerns.

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