Kiruhura – A war has erupted between two families over boundaries that separate their cattle ranch located in Kiruhura district, western Uganda. Ms. Florence Kafamaisho, a widow of James Kafamaisho has dragged family members of the late Perez Kanyamunyu to police over allegedly grabbing part of their ranch land.
The case was reported at Kikaatsi police post vide reference SD.09/11/06/21. According to police records, Kafamaisho is accusing three grandsons of late Kanyamunyu; Moses Karuhanga, Nicholas Kahangire and Moses Ihoza of trespass and attempting to grab her land in ranch No. 11B, in Nyabushozi County, Kiruhura district.
Kafamaisho told police that the three brothers and other young men wielding deadly weapons such as machetes, spears, arrows and bows trespassed onto her farm and slaughtered an animal which they feasted on. Earlier on the morning of June 11, 2021, Kafamaisho had also reported the same case to Bunonko LC 1, village chairman Mr. Yosam Tumusiime who upon accessing the deadly situation, referred her to Kikaatsi police station.
After recording her case, the Officer in Charge reportedly referred her to the District Police Commander Kiruhura district but her woes are far from over.
Late Kanyamunyu and late Kafamaisho were brothers who jointly acquired the ranch from the Uganda government in 1965 under the Ankole-Masaka Ranching Scheme. Following a general Presidential Notice No. 182 of 1990 the government established the Ranch Restructuring Board, whose mandate, among others, was to forcefully confiscate, acquire and take over the land, and redistribute it to squatters.
Late Kanyamunyu and late Kafamaisho remained with 521 hectares after this restructuring. With time, the two families decided to divide by half with each one to get their own title but since then there has been wrangles. The Kanyamunyu family now reportedly wants to grab the share of Kafamaisho; in spite of the fact that the land was divided equally between the two families.
PRIOR LOSS COMPENSATION
All ranchers numbering about 25 including Kanyamunyu and Kafamaisho ranch who incurred losses during the restructuring process sued the government and won. The case was under Civil Suit number 103 of 2010. The Attorney General was the defendant in the case that the government lost. The judgment was passed by Justice Rubby Aweri Opio on February 27, 2013, who awarded the plaintiffs damages and costs amounting to about Shs37bn.
In 2018, Ms. Kafamaisho sought President Yoweri Museveni’s intervention. In November 2018, she met the President at State House, Entebbe. During the meeting President Museveni instructed his legal aide, Ms. Florence Kiconco to liaise with Betty Amongi then Minister of Lands, Housing and Urban Development to halt compensation and help Kafamaisho’s widow get justice. On January 11, 2019 Minister Amongi wrote to the Permanent Secretary/ Secretary to the Treasury Ministry of Finance, Planning and Economic Development, Permanent Secretary Ministry of Lands, Housing and Urban Development instructing them to halt compensation of the contested ranch No. 11B in Ankole.
The letter partly reads: “notification to halt for rather No. 11B out of the 25 number ranches valued by the chief government valuer originating from high court suit No. 103 of 2010 whose total compensation award of UGX 37, 350, 105, 650 (Uganda shillings thirty-seven billion, three hundred fifty million, one hundred five thousand six hundred fifty only. This is in regard to Ranch No.11 B mentioned above owned by two families of the late J.K Kafamaisho and Mr. P.K Kanyamunyu respectively.
One of the family petitioned HE the President and the matter was referred to me for further management. The two families have long been embattling on the ownership of their clearly designated portions of Ranch 11 (Residue) retained by the ranchers measuring approximately 521 hectares.”
Minister Amongi further stated that: “This letter serves a notification to you to HALT payment for ranch No. 11 until both warring parties have resolved on how payments for ranch 11 will be shared and NOT to be made to only one family.
”In spite of President Museveni’s directive, the widow of Kafamaisho has not received any justice. Instead, she has been intimidated by some influential district officials who only call to taunt her on her mobile phone. Efforts to reach the Kanyamunyu family and Kiruhura police were futile by press time.