Government is to appeal the high court ruling ordering the payment of 2.9 trillion shillings to war victims in Lango region for the loss of livestock. In 2010, war victim under Lango War Claimants Association sued Government in a civil suit number 027/2010 at Lira High Court demanding for compensation for their animals and property lost during the war between 1986 and 2006.
On July 14th 2014, Justice Byamukama Mugenyi stated that government failed in its duty to protect people and their properties during and after the insurgency. He therefore ordered government to compensate the 69,457 war victims to help them rebuild their lives and recover from the economic inconveniences inflicted on them during the two decade insurgency. He ordered that government pays a total of 1,100,055 head of cattle at Ugx 900,000 each and each of the 796,377 goats and sheep be paid at the Ugx 160,000.
He further ordered that each claimant be paid Ugx 4M as general damages and Ugx 1M each for exemplary costs which they incurred while pursuing the case and that government should grant the claimants 25% of the total award since 2004 to date. Now, Henry Oluka, the principal state attorney in the office of the Attorney General has communicated to the registrar of the court of appeal expressing the intention of government to appeal the ruling.
In the 15th July letter to the registrar, Oluka notes that the state is dissatisfied with the ruling of Justice Mugenyi. Oluka says a team of legal experts in the office of the attorney general is studying the judgment before a formal appeal is made. But Makmot Adams Kibwanga, the lawyer for the war victims says they are not threatened with the appeal. According to Kibwanga he will defeat the appeal once it is brought in case.
Moses Ogwang Adonyo, the coordinator of the claimants accuses some NRM politicians from Lango he didn’t name for pushing the Attorney general to appeal the judgment. In May this year, Lira high court ordered government to pay compensation of stolen and lost animals and properties to over 4,000 claimants.
In 2012, a similar case was handled by Lira high court where a huge sum of money was awarded to claimants.