Deputy Minister The Resident District Commissioners (RDCs) and Resident City Commissioners (RCCs) in Bunyoro and Rwenzori have been asked to enforce the Presidential Directive of February 28, 2022 to deal with the numerous cases of land grabbing in the sub-regions, according to the Presidency’s head, Hon. Babirye Milly Babalanda.
At the conclusion of a two-day workshop on capacity building for RDCs, RCCs, Deputies, and DISOs from the Rwenzori and Bunyoro subregions, held at the Mica Eco Resort Hotel in Hoima City, the Minister made the request yesterday.
Lt. Col. Emmy Katabazi, Deputy Director General of the Internal Security Organization (ISO), spoke on behalf of Hon. Babalanda as the workshop’s chief guest.
There have been fatalities as a result of the widespread and violent land grabbing in this area. Land speculators are putting titles on the peasants’ lands and seizing them through deception by taking advantage of their illiteracy and helplessness. By putting into practice the presidential directive from February 28, 2022, which completely addresses this issue, the RDCs should deal with these land squatters. According to Hon. Milly Babalanda, these land speculators are manipulating the courts to purchase time and even compromise some judicial personnel.
The Minister issued a warning, advising the RDCs to keep an eye out for all land-related crimes by thoroughly investigating these incidents and reporting them directly to the Principal Judge, Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), or Minister for Lands to inform them of what is occurring on the ground, particularly in situations of emergency that are clear-cut and call for immediate action.
She highlighted that “such reports should always be copied into the Secretary Office of the President and the Minister.”
In order to ensure that government projects and programs are carried out properly, the Minister also gave the commissioners and DISOs the job of combating corruption.
“The problem of corruption will be reduced if we handle the resources at our disposal wisely and also carry out appropriate monitoring and oversight of government initiatives. According to Hon. Milly Babalanda, the more money we lose to dishonest officials, the more we slow down our transition.
“In addition, I know many contractors who have stopped working in part because of dishonesty or laziness. The government projects completed by these contractors are subject to inspection by the RDCs. I won’t mention the specific projects here; instead, I’m writing to the State House anti-corruption Unit and the IGG to ask them to look into why they stopped working in your districts and why the government keeps losing money due to such corrupt tendencies. Is it possible that some RDCs snooze while at work? Why was it necessary for us to find these abnormalities on our own when you are on the ground? she questioned.
Hon. Milly Babalanda urged the workshop participants to exert twice as much effort in overseeing the implementation of the government’s two major projects, Emyooga and the Parish Development Model (PDM).
She disclosed that the President was worried that RDCs and RCCs were not paying enough attention to these initiatives that aimed to address the nation’s poverty crisis.
The Minister instructed, “You need to be aware of all the funds that have been received in the district/city; how many beneficiary groups have received or have not; and what are the concerns pertaining to delays, obstacles, or inconsistent implementation of the programs.
“You are requested to respond to the issues brought up regarding some beneficiaries who have not yet registered with the system. Please have all eligible individuals entered into the system and verify they receive the funds as intended by sitting down with the CAO and the concerned PDM technical officers. The corrupt district officials are infiltrating the system and extorting money from unwitting potential beneficiaries under the pretense that they are assisting them in gaining access to it through the loopholes of delays. The opinions on PDM that H.E. the President recently issued while visiting Masaka are to be implemented nationwide. Please read the President’s letter regarding PDM.
The Minister also informed the commissioners and DISOs that the President was worried that the directive on wetlands encroachment has not been widely publicized despite the fact that environmental catastrophes associated with these encroachments continue to manifest themselves in local communities.
In order to overcome the issues impeding the directive in the Bunyoro sub-region, Hon. Milly Babalanda gave the commissioners the job of sending the Office of the President the lists of persons possessing titles in the wetlands as a temporary solution.
“You must support and defend government initiatives, but some of you have regretfully fallen short. You do not appear on the radios despite having free government airtime. Some of you are even unable to receive press coverage for public events. We don’t watch you on television or read about you in the newspaper. Where are you functioning from if you are not present in either of the aforementioned places or the communities? Some of you haven’t even submitted any reports to my office, in fact. More than 10 people from Bunyoro that I can think of have never given me a monthly report. I’ll take an interest in what these folks are doing and learn more about it.
Because the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) are still present in the region, the Minister urged the commissioners and DISOs to treat the security situation in Bunyoro extremely seriously.
As they please, people are crossing the borders. You are expected to oversee and screen those who are moving with vigilance. You shouldn’t just leave the immigration officials in charge of vetting matters. You must demonstrate interest in this subject as security committee chairs and members.
The RDC Secretariat’s Senior Presidential Advisor for Mobilization, Lt. Col. Kibrai Ambako, urged the RDCs to take an active role in overseeing and carrying out policies like PDM.
“Empower the masses economically by implementing initiatives like PDM, and participate actively in even the first stage of manufacturing. You ought to set an example. You are already a suspect of instability if you are depending on paychecks to get by, according to Lt. Col. Kibrai.
Additionally, the Senior Presidential Advisor urged the commissioners to always approach security matters under their jurisdiction from a strategic angle. Doing so will enable them to protect the nation from threats to its important interests, such as social services.
“The reports you produce are not thorough enough, and there are no discussions. It makes it abundantly evident that you don’t comprehend security. The nature that directs your conversations is barren. The major concerns that your nation faces are not discussed. He continued, “Internal concerns like bad politics and land encroachment are the immediate ones you should handle. That is security.
The Deputy National Coordinator of PDM, Ms. Jovrine Kaliisa Kyomukama, urged for collaboration between the RDCs and the PDM Secretariat at the same session in order to guarantee the program’s success.
“President Yoweri Museveni said PDM must function; as the President’s eyes and ears in your respective regions, please make sure the program is successful. Team up to advance our nation’s socioeconomic development, she urged.