President Yoweri Museveni at his country home in Rwakitura. Photo credit/Kalibbala Kato Jacob

The Democratic Party (DP) youth leader Christopher Okidi has said that President Yoweri Museveni is a squatter on the Rwakitura land, where he has a country home.

Amid rib-cracking laughter, Mr Okidi, who was addressing the press at the party headquarters in Kampala today, also said that Mr Museveni has no right to sell the Rwakitura land, and vowed he would personally take a placard inscribed with the words ‘Rwakitura land not for sale’ to the President’s country home aboard a bus.

Mr Okidi, who was speaking at a launch campaign to ‘fight’ against alleged land grabbing by government’, also claimed that the grabbed land had been sold to investors.

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ACCUSED GOVERNMENT OF 'GRABBING' PUBLIC LAND AND SELLING IT TO INVESTORS: Democratic Party Youth Leader Christopher Okidi
ACCUSED GOVERNMENT OF ‘GRABBING’ PUBLIC LAND AND SELLING IT TO INVESTORS: Democratic Party Youth Leader Christopher Okidi

He said the DP had laid down a number of strategies in respect to the campaign, including petitioning Parliament and also visiting all the places the party says had been grabbed by the government.

DEMOLISHED: Parents sort through the rubble for their children's belongings at the site of the demolished Nabagereka Primary School. Photo credit/Aljazeera
DEMOLISHED: Parents sort through the rubble for their children’s belongings at the site of the demolished Nabagereka Primary School. Photo credit/Aljazeera

According to Mr. Okidi, the team will begin with Nakivubo Stadium and the Nabagereka Primary School, with placards reading ‘public land is not for sale’.

“The NRM government has turned Ugandan land into a one man property,” Mr. Okidi said, adding that this had “affected the poor Ugandans who carry out small survival businesses on this land and even some who own it and purchased it expensively.”

Citing the Shimoni land that was home to a Primary School and Teacher Training College, Mr Okidi said that the government has on several occasions taken land and just left it undeveloped. He added that the DP would ensure the land is returned to its rightful owners.

“There is nothing like idle land in Uganda; so there is need for the government to empower citizens and mobilize them on how best this land can be put to use rather than selling it off to investors who at the end of the day repatriate the profits to their countries,” he said.

Talking about corruption, Mr Okidi said the vice was rampant, perpetuated by ‘people loyal to the current regime’.

‘If it only takes a goat to buy public land’ the DP would also ‘sell one’, he said in reference to a recent scam involving the fraudulent purchase of a 23 acre piece of land belonging to the Uganda Broadcasting Corporation (UBC) in Bugolobi, a leafy city suburb.

“The government is full of corruption and has turned the country’s property into private property,” he said, stressing that the DP youth are totally against land grabbing.

But contacted, Government Deputy Spokesperson Col Shaban Bantariza said the government was just reallocating its property.

“The land in question belongs to the Uganda Land Commission (ULC) ; it is the one that re-allocates the land. So what is the problem of government re-allocating its land to more useful purposes”? he wondered.

He added that the ‘DP should look for something else to keep it in the news’.