Bamugemereire commission goes 4 months without money

Four months without any remittances from the treasury to finance its activities, the Justice Catherine Bamugemereire-led Judicial Commission of Inquiry on Land has been forced to cut back on some of its activities.

In the face of growing public criticism over its perceived silence over the increased violent land evictions around the country, Bamugemereire let the cat out of the bag.

Speaking on Monday at the commission’s offices at Wandegeya near Kampala, Bamugemereire said, the Land inquiry commission cannot do much without money.

“Public calls us all the time but for last 4 months we are not getting money, we have no provisional budget, our people are not paid, it is painful to see them going without salaries,” Bamugemereire said.

Bamugemereire (2nd right) with other commissioners during a recent land probe.

“We hope situation changes maybe this week so that we do our work. The public should know this because they criticise yet we can’t reply back,” she added.

She said that while the commission in its policy has tried to steer away from cases of evictions and demolitions with a belief that the police and courts of law can ably handle, she found it compelling for her to comment on the evictions in Lusanja, Kawempe division because the commission was dragged into the saga.

“We never want to interfere but in regards Kawempe evictions, we were asked for a legal opinion which we were in process to provide, it is saddening that the evictions took place before we gave our opinion,” Bamugemereire said.

Beyond offering legal opinion, Bamugemereire denied that there was a case before her inquiry commission related to the Lusanja evictions.

Several residents were left homeless on Friday after court bailiffs procured by a one Medard Kiconco demolished houses on the contested piece of land.