A property row between Buganda Land Board (BLB) and Makindye /Ssabagabo Municipality officials has escalated with the former blocking an ongoing government-sponsored project for the construction of a two classroom block at Kigo Prisons Primary School.
With a government grant of Shs76 million, the school management is constructing a two-classroom block, but BLB claims the government handed back the land title on which the school is located to Buganda Kingdom in a consent agreement in 2011.
“Therefore, we do not expect any further developments on the school land. We agreed with government that it relocates all its facilities on Kigo complex,” Mr Denis Bugaya, the legal and public relations officer BLB said in an interview at the weekend.
In a correspondence dated March 21, signed by BLB’s physical planner, Mr Emmanuel Balaba to the school management, the latter is accused of noncompliance to the set out rules and has been ordered to immediately stop the ongoing ‘illegal construction’.
“Immediately stop any further construction/action and report to BLB,” a notice entitled “Violation of Physical Planning Rules and Regulations” reads in part.
But Mr Gerald Lumbuye, the mayor Makindye/Ssabagabo accuses some officials within BLB of creating a rift between the kingdom and government.
“This school has been here for long and has more than 600 pupils from a wider radius. We will sit down and agree or we shall ask the community to protect their school,” Mr Lumbuye said during a visit to the school last week.
Makindye/Ssabagabo deputy mayor, Mr Ben Kiwanuka advised the school management to fence off the school playground which is said to have already been sold off to private developers by BLB.
Mr William Kayongo, the Ndejje Division education officer, who led the mayor’s team on a guided tour of the school last week, said Kigo Prison Primary School was started in 1956 at Makindye Military Barracks when the prison had not yet been transferred to its current location.
“Records show that when they were transferred to Kigo, parents mobilised money set up classrooms and they were the ones paying for teachers’ salaries. This school is historically important to our community,” Mr Kayongo said.
Last week, Daily Monitor broke a story where BLB is also embroiled in another disagreement with the school management over Shs530 million that was wired to the school bank account by Uganda National Roads Authority (Unra). The said money was paid as compensation for a piece of the school land that was used to create space for construction of Kampala Southern By-Pass Express Highway that joins Kajjansi and Bweyogerere. However, BLB insists the money was given to the wrong people since Buganda Kingdom is the rightful owner of the land.