Friday, September 18th, 2020 | By
Environmental activists who were arrested by Uganda police in September this year in Hoima city Western Uganda over the “Save Bugoma Forest campaign” have vowed to die fighting to save the forest.
David Kureeba, the Officer in Forestry and Biodiversity, at National Association of Professional Environmentalists, NAPE says if government does not safeguard the forest and stop deforestations, they will run to courts of law.
Mr. Kureeba, who appeared on Community Green Radio on September 18 said NAPE and other environmentalists are to sue Hoima Sugar Limited, NEEMA and the government over the destruction of the forest.
“It is unfortunate that the police are arresting activists who are advocating to save Bugoma Forest instead of arresting those behind the cutting down of the natural resource. We shall take this battle to courts of law. We can’t allow the forest to just go”, Kureeba said.
NAPE and other conservation activists are still battling in court after they dragged National Environment Management Authority –NEMA for giving out a certificate to Hoima Sugar limited for sugarcane growing.
Two Environmental Journalists who were arrested by Uganda police for allegedly organising a demonstration have also vowed to fight on. The two are Joshua Mutale and Venex Watebawa from the Water and Environment Media Network Uganda (WEMNET).
Mr. Watebawa says they were arrested and detained when they had gone to seek for protection from police to have a peaceful protest against the leasing of the forest reserve by Bunyoro Kitara Kingdom to Hoima Sugar Limited for sugarcane growing. He, however said their arrest and detention will not stop them from the campaign.
“We went to seek for permission from the Officer in-charge at Hoima Police station to be able to peacefully protest the giveaway of the forest that is reportedly being cleared by the sugar company but we were instead arrested and detained. Now that we are out, we are going to continue to fight to save the forest,” Watebawa narrated.