The leadership of Teso Animal and Property Claimants Organization (TAPCO) the lead organization for compensation of war claimants have revealed that the Ugandan government is committed to compensating the people Teso for their lost property.
While speaking to our reporter during the review of the NRM manifesto commitments for the people of Teso on Saturday, Anthony Esenu the Kapelebyong County MP also a member of TAPCO said that the government has committed itself to pay the people of Teso.
He noted that at least a total of Uganda Shillings 49 billion has been released by the government this financial year to cater for the compensation of claimants from three sub regions of Teso, Lango and Acholi.
At least 16,946 war claimants from Acholi, 42,042 from Lango and 33,664 from Teso have been verified to receive the compensation funds.
The government has earmarked Uganda Shillings 150 billion to compensate the claimants across the 29 districts in the three sub-region.
More than 200,000 people dragged the government to court in the Teso sub-region in five different civil suits over compensation of lives and property lost during insurgency by the rebel groups, Karimojong cattle rustlers and government soldiers since 2005.
The suits included; Okupa & Others Vs Attorney General Misc. Application No. 14 of 2005, Okupa & Others Attorney General, Civil Suit No. 122 of 2009, Ochen Julius & 200,500 Others Versus Attorney General, Civil Suit No. 292 of 2010, Geresom Eotu & Others Versus Attorney General, Civil Suit No. 230 of 2010 and Imodot & Others Versus Attorney General, Civil Suit No. 09 of 2012.
TAPCO is a voluntary non-governmental organization that agreed to push for compensation but has faced opposition from NRM and some Opposition leaders.
During the launch President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni attributed the delay of the compensation exercise to dishonest people who were giving false information to the verification and validation teams about the animals lost.
He however assured the remaining beneficiaries that they will be paid gradually in the subsequent financial years.
President Museveni strongly encouraged the beneficiaries of the compensation to properly utilize the money for eradication of poverty.
He stressed the importance of following the NRM counsel of embracing modern commercial and calculated agriculture according to the 4 acre model.