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Bunyoro MPs are letting their voters down

The MPs’ statements in the media indicate that they have not been doing their job, of representing their constituents, at least for the past fifteen months that the compensation has been taking place.

Beatrice Ongode

By Beatrice Ongode

Recently, the Daily Monitor reported that some Parliamentarians from the oil-rich Bunyoro Region are demanding a probe into irregularities that have marred the compensation of residents in the proposed refinery area in Hoima District.

The MPs, whose trip was organised by Global Rights Alert, an NGO, were apparently shocked to learn about the anomalies in the compensation process. Never mind that the compensation has been going on for over a year now and some of the aggrieved residents started crying foul from the onset. In fact, some of the refinery affected persons have been in and out of Court over the process with the help of NGOs like the African Institute for Energy Governance (AFIEGO).

Even more shocking was Buliisa MP Stephen Mukitale’s defence that the Parliamentarians had been repeatedly assured by government that all was well in the oil areas and hence the legislators believed it was so! Really?

Hundreds of Hon. Mukitale’s constituents have lost land in high-handed land grabs involving ‘connected’ individuals ever since oil was found in the area. Does he want to tell us that he is not aware of the suffering of some of his voters?

The MPs’ statements in the media indicate that they have not been doing their job-of representing their constituents, at least for the past fifteen months that the compensation has been taking place.

One cannot help but wonder if they would have ever ‘learnt’ of the injustices some of the refinery affected persons are facing if the NGO had not organised that trip.

And now that they have seen and heard for themselves what some of their voters are going through in Hoima, we wait to see what they are going to do about it. Your guess is as good as mine.

Miss Ongode is a Staff Writer-Oil in Uganda

editor@oilinuganda.org