Over 647 families of pastoralists (Balaalo) who were recently evicted from their homes in Buliisa District, southern Uganda, have refuted allegations by Ugandan government that they are of Rwanda and Tanzanian origin.
The thousands of herdsmen were forcefully evicted from their farms allegedly by Ugandan army and police operatives.
In a telephone interview with Grace Bororoza the chairperson of pastoralists, she revealed that, it was government’s plan to trample on their right under the pretext of originating from foreign countries.
“We are Ugandans. Nobody came from Rwanda or Tanzania. I was born in Mpororo in western Uganda in 1944; I have spent 20 years in Buliisa when it was even Masindi district before its secession so those who are claiming that we are not Ugandan should research,” she told The New Times.
However according to reports, Ugandan officials are insisting that the pastoralists migrated from Rwanda and some parts of Karagwe in Tanzania and encroached illegally on the Buliisa land.
Bororoza further revealed that all evictees possess their land titles and citizenship identification cards which attest to the fact that they are of Ugandan nationality.
She added that Ugandan government should intervene and indemnify all the properties that were lost during the evictions and as well find them appropriate places for resettlement.
“Soldiers are eating our cows, other properties like household materials have also been destroyed, we’re left with nothing…we need the government to compensate us and provide convenient places to resettle.”