June 18, 2024

Security in Kwania accused of connivance to condone wetland degradation

Arikwanga Richard Noon

By Voice of Lango Editorial (editorial@vol.co.ug)

The office of the RDC of Kwania district is on the spot over allegation of connivance with police of Kwania Central Police Station for deliberately ignoring wetland degradation practice at Arocha Swamp. 

On 28/1/2024, the office of the RDC of Kwania in conjunction with police of Kwania CPS impounded a tractor, registration number; UBD 090E that was found cultivating this wetland at night and it was taken to Kwania CPS as investigation into the matter went on.

Reports obtained from one of the intelligence officers of Kwania district who preferred anonymity says officials from the National Environmental Management Authority- NEMA and office of Kwania district environmental officer visited Arocha swamp in an area where the tractor was seized and found about 10 hectors of the wetland had been cultivated. 

Jimmy Okweny, senior Environment officer of Kwania said officials from NEMA had asked police not to release the tractor which would be used as a tangible exhibit in court.

Fred Otim a local of Abongomola Sub County accused the office of the RDC and police of corruption which is promoting wetland degradation by mostly wealthy people.

Otim threatened to mobilize locals to demonstrate against the RDC whose office is supposed to play monitoring role for government projects.

Effort to speak to Kwania RDC, Richard Arikwanga Noon over the matter was futile as he did not answer to our calls.

However, Kwania District Internal Security Officer, who is also the acting deputy RDC of Kwania, Emmanuel Ameto said they got complaints from one Moses Lutalo who is the owner of the tractor that was impounded for cultivating Arocha swamp who said he had obtained the tractor on loan and asked that the pictures of the tractor should be used as exhibit instead.

Ameto said they handed over the tractor after the Resident State Attorney of Apac advised them to take pictures of the tractor instead.