By Don Rama
The Mbale Industrial City Division Member of Parliament has intervened in a land wrangle between residents of Masanda Cell, Nabitiri Ward, Industrial City Division and authorities of Sino Industrial Park over land.
Hon. Karim Masaba on Sunday 17th September met with angry residents of Masanda cell who told him that Industrial Park authorities want to force them to sell their land to them moreover at laughable amounts.
Sino Industrial Park recently dug a tunnel to divert water on the boundary between the Industrial Park Land and that of Masanda Cell residents.
Speaking to the MP, Fungo Abbas, one of the affected residents, said Industrial Park authorities are pushing for the acquisition of their land because soil from their land keeps on filling up the tunnel.
Abbas says, whereas the Industrial Park authorities are willing to compensate them, what they are offering is peanuts.
“Imagine they paid residents of former Mawumbo Cell, Industrial City Division only Shs600,000 per each, which is not even enough to buy a small plot,” Abbas said.
Responding to this cry, Hon. Masaba said he is going to present the concerns of the residents first to Industrial Park authorities asserting that should there be no positive response, he will petition the Speaker of Parliament.
He also promised to have a discussion with the Minister of State for Investment, Hon. Evelyn Anite to ensure amicable solution is arrived at insisting that the residents should be left with their land.
He also supported the suggestion by residents that Industrial Park should instead construct a concrete barrier to stop the soil from their land from filling up the tunnel. The residents argued that this will also protect children who may easily fall into the deep tunnel.
Speaking at the sidelines of the meeting, some residents also requested Industrial Park to build a mini gate facing Masanda Cell since most of their residents are employed at the Park. They argue that this will reduce transport costs incurred by these workers who have to access the Park through the main gate.