Global Politics


Chief Justice Owiny Dollo Nostalgic About Land Grabs in Acholi

Chief Justice Alfonse Owiny-Dollo Cigamoi, October 18, 2023 led 39 Acholi leaders to meet President Museveni at the State House to present their position on the Balaalo invasion into Acholi Sub Region. They reportedly asked the President to come and witness the rampant land grabbing.

Chief Justice Owiny Dollo reportedly said it appears the current move is to restock Acholi land with Balaalo cattle yet the Acholi own cows were looted by the Karimojong and others with hardly any compensation. He said this move is unjust.

Chief Justice Alfonse Owiny Dollo’s views were relayed by Anthony Akol, the MP for Kilak North while appearing on Te-yat political talk show on Radio Mega FM in Gulu, who said the Chief Justice wondered whether the Balaalo were entitled to invest in Acholi Sub-Region and not the Acholi themselves.

The MP said that the Chief Justice informed the President that besides Balaalo, some of his generals and ministers are using the Balaalo as proxies to grab Acholi land and that they seem to be behind the delay to implement the Presidential order for the Balaalo to leave Acholi land.

According to the Executive Order No. 3 issued on May 19, 2023, the Balaalo were given a deadline to leave Acholi land on September 30 but this was later extended to October 20 and on November 3, again extended by three weeks, elapsing on November 24.

Information indicate that in Okidi, Atiak Sub-county whole community has been completely dispossessed by the Balaalo who pay agents of the community peanuts and take over their land. Other stakeholders in the land are silenced by threats and they sometimes resort to court cases that prove too expensive for them. They end up losing their land and are are turned into landless destitutes. Even a sacred site of the Atiak cultural institution has not been spared, it was sold off by masqueraders, indicating the ineptitude of the otherwise enlightened Chief Santos Apire of Atiak.

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