All Ugandans have been told to leave wetlands and forest reserves, but investors who had built up factories in the meantime will be allowed to continue doing so since they had been misled.
According to Finance Minister Matia Kasaija, the investors are permitted to inhabit the catchment regions since they could not have been aware that these are protected zones.
“If those [investors] were misled, they will be tolerated because they were not told from the word go, but those [locals] who went there [wetlands] having been warned are the ones we are targeting,” he said.
He said this while the International University of East Africa was being unveiled as the location for the next East African Food Security Symposium and Expo, which is set to take place from October 14 to October 16.
According to Mr. Kasaija, pollution is to blame for the government’s action against wetlands encroachment since it is harming Lake Victoria and other water bodies.
To discourage farmers from farming in catchment regions, the government destroyed rice from an estimated 30-acre wetland in northern Uganda’s Otuke District in July. In January, President Yoweri Museveni issued an order to remove all encroachers from wetlands.