Hoima-Bunyoro Kingdom has demanded the return of all its properties confiscated by the State in 1967 and the restoration of its boundaries to the status prior to 1900.
Omukama Solomon Gafabusa Iguru I wants to know why the government has delayed to return his kingdom’s properties even after the President’s directive and approval.
The Omukama is also the chairperson of Uganda Cultural Leaders Forum.
Government still in charge
A submission to the government by Bunyoro Kingdom team headed by the prime minister, the Rev Jackson Nsamba Kasozi states that whereas under a statutory instrument in 1967, Bunyoro’s properties were on September 8 1967, confiscated by the Uganda government without compensation, the government still holds many of the assets to date.
Mr Kasozi said the statutory instrument of July 30, 1993 cancelled the 1967 instrument, which confiscated the kingdom assets, and paved way for the return of those properties.
Bunyoro Kingdom is demanding forest reserves, official estates, palace grounds at Hoima and Masindi, administration headquarters, some health units, schools, markets, royalties from forests, national parks, fish landing sites, minerals and compensation for loss of value of kingdom assets that have for decades been under custody of government.
Many of these properties are in the hands of the central government, while others like land now fall under Buganda Kingdom authority. It is not clear how Bunyoro will repossess these properties without causing a collision with their Buganda counterparts.
Mr Kasozi said the claim for restoration of Bunyoro’s boundaries to the 1900 status has been submitted to the government committee headed by the Attorney General, Mr Peter Nyombi.
However, Mr Nyombi, who heads the government team negotiating with Bunyoro over the return of assets, wrote to King Inguru on April 17 indicating that the government had prioritised the return of Kyangwali and Kyempisi ranches.
He said he had personally asked the Principal Private Secretary to the President for funds to complete the survey of land in Kyangwali.
Given hot air?
A memorandum signed between Bunyoro Kingdom and the then Uganda’s prime minister Apolo Nsibambi dated May 1994, lists 113 various properties, including schools, health centres, markets, public administration blocks and residences of public officials as having been returned to Bunyoro kingdom by the government.
However, the Bunyoro prime minister says although the kingdom regained the said assets and is managing them, government has not released the land titles for the estates.
List of some of properties Bunyoro is demanding to be returned to them by the government
Kandando – Ngobya
Sub-county Headquarters in Kibaale District
Kakindo Kasambya Matale Mugarama Kagadi Kyanaisoke Bwamiramira Bwikara Mabala Kiryanga