UGANDA, Namutumba | Real Muloodi News | Parents of Namutumba Primary School in Namutumba Town Council have united to oppose the proposed construction of a fuel station on the school’s land.
The 100 by 100 feet plot, situated on the Mbale-Tirinyi highway, is opposite the Namutumba District Electoral Commission Offices and Kisiki College Secondary School.
Expressing their concerns, parents accuse the Central Busoga Diocese leadership of dividing a portion of the land for Praise Petroleum Company, cautioning that a fuel station’s establishment would pose a threat to the school’s operations.
The institution, founded by the Church of Uganda in 1926, has a proud 97-year history and spans five acres.
Ms Esther Namugosa, a concerned parent, expressed her worry over reports suggesting that Praise Petroleum Company intends to purchase the entire school land.
She emphasised that Namutumba Primary School is the only government-aided primary school in the area that consistently achieves remarkable results in the Primary Leaving Examinations (PLE).
Ms Namugosa added, “Constructing a fuel station means it will be demolished.”
Another parent, Mr Paul Kirunda, warned that unless the Central Busoga Diocese withdraws its plan to allocate land for the fuel station, he would encourage Christians to boycott all church activities and withhold contributions.
Mr Isa Maganda, a parent and representative of Budongo Ward, affirmed that the opposition stems from the fact that fuel stations are prohibited from being constructed on school premises according to the law.
He stated, “We need the Church for spiritual nourishment as well as a school, so I request the Church to withdraw. If a fuel station is built on the school land, we are likely to lose a historical institution that has existed for over 90 years.”
Sources indicate that the land was sold for UGX 200 million, and plans for the fuel station’s construction commenced in 2019 during the Covid-19 period, with Praise Petroleum Company clearing the land.
However, the land-clearing process was halted following intervention by Ms Persis Namuganza, the then State Minister for Lands
In 2021, the company was offered an alternative plot on Namutumba-Bulange Road for the fuel station, but it declined, insisting on the highway location.
These concerns were raised during a meeting held at the school.
Ms Christine Kasisa, the vice chairperson of the school management committee, informed parents that the land in question had been earmarked for the construction of a nursery school and pit latrines.
Nevertheless, the Central Busoga Diocesan Secretary, Mr Patrick Kemba, refuted these claims, stating that the Church had no intentions of allocating school land for a fuel station.
Rev. Joshua Kabweru, the chairperson of the Parents Teachers Association (PTA), shared that the school management committee had written to the diocese, which responded by revealing that the land had been given to an investor for development.
Rev. Kabweru emphasised the parents’ united stance against this decision and presented a document to halt the investor from taking possession of the school land.
Mr Aggrey Lugemu, the school’s head teacher, expressed his disapproval of the fuel station’s construction on the school premises and revealed that he had received threatening messages regarding the land issues.
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