Gulu District, UBC in Battle Over Moro Hill

2593 Views Gulu, Uganda
Moro hill, located about forty kilometers south of Gulu town in Lakwana Sub County has become the centre of an ownership row. Uganda Broadcasting Corporation, the district local government and telecommunication companies all claim ownership of the much-coveted hill. Patrick Kilama, the Lakwana Sub County chief, says that the contention emerged three years ago, when UBC wrote to them complaining that Warid, one of the telecommunication companies was illegally occupying their property. Telecommunication companies comprising MTN, Uganda Telecom and Warid erected masts on top of the hill. Radio stations including Mega FM and Radio Maria have also mounted their transmission antenna on some of the masts, especially one owned by utl. Kilama explained that the Sub County has in the past levied rental fee on each of the companies that mounted their masts on the hill. He said a meeting held by the Sub County and the companies failed to resolve the dispute, because UBC claimed it had secured a statutatory lease giving it the full ownership of the hill and surrounding piece of land. Alex Ojera, the Gulu district land officer, admitted there was controversy over the ownership of the hill, but said the district land board is arranging a meeting for all the parties claiming ownership of the land. He added that the district was also in the process to establish the quantity of the land in contention. Ojera added that UBC was threatening to sue the Sub County for allegedly allowing other companies to erect their masts on the hill, which it claims, overall ownership. However, Jane Kasumba, the UBC spokesperson said she would make a statement later about the claim over the hill after consultation with the corporation secretary. Meanwhile, the local authority of Lakwana Sub County has insisted that they own the hill and therefore have a right to levy ground rent for anyone seeking to occupy the area. ###