I have moved enough because of compensation; I need my money, 76-year-old elderly in Kyankwanzi cries out

Sunday, June 30th, 2024 | By

76 year old Tereza Bamuteze in an interview with our reporter about her unending wait for compensation of her land and property.

While moving around Half London trading Centre in Nabidondolo West, Nabulembeko Parish in Watubba Sub county Kyankwanzi District we came across is seemingly elderly woman, her name is Tereza Bamuteze.  She says is 76 years old.

Bamuteze is currently surviving with little hope of getting a meal because she no longer cultivates food. Her land was earmarked for the East African Crude pipeline, EACOP and thus ordered not to utilize the land any more.

“I was stopped from using the land. I no longer grow crops for food. I can’t even harvest the coffee trees there in”, she narrates to our reporter.

After being stopped from utilizing the land, she had hoped of finding food in the market since compensation money was meant to be paid early but that hasn’t been the case.

Bamuteze narrates of how painful it has been for her to frequently visit the bank in town to check her balance but all attempts have not yielded any results.

The fifth time she visited the bank to check whether her compensation was deposited, she found her bank account closed and had to deposit more money for it to be reopened and later she had to look for a leader for help.

“When I raised our area councilor (representative to the local government), he told me to wait till July when payments resume”, narrated Ms. Tereza Bamuteze.

Bamuteze says she doesn’t know the size of the land that was taken away from her but recalls that her land and property were values at 1,922,500 Uganda Shillings.

Asuman Sssembatya, the Nabulembeko parish chairperson says as leaders, they have done all within their powers but PAPs’ compensations remain a toll order.

“These people come and promise our people timely compensation but when they leave us, things change”, says Mr. Ssembatya.

In May 2022, the EACOP reported that at least 41 percent of the Project affected persons-PAPs under the East African Crude Oil pipeline-EACOP project have been fully compensated in Uganda. There are 3,648 project affected persons-PAPs under the EACOP project in Uganda.

The 1,443km crude oil export pipeline will transport Uganda’s crude oil from Hoima in Uganda to the Chongoleani peninsula near Tanga port in Tanzania.

According to the agreed plan, the pipeline route will begin from Hoima through Kikuube, Kakumiro, Kyankwanzi, Mubende, Gomba, Sembabule, Lwengo, Kyotera, and Rakai and cross the Tanzania border between Masaka and Bukoba, and traverse Tanzania through Kahama, Singida, Kondoa, into Tanga.

The governments of Uganda and Tanzania signed an Inter-Governmental Agreement (IGA)for the EACOP Project on 26 May 2017.

Community Green radio has been working closely with the PAPs to ensure their rights are fully respected during the implementation of all Oil and Gas related developments. The radio serves as a platform for the grassroots as their voice.