21 November 2012

Uganda: Nema, KCCA Sued Over Noise Pollution

A resident of Kololo an upscale city suburb has sued National Environmental Management Authority (NEMA), and Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) over noise pollution, claiming his family is being inconvenienced by noise from a popular city entertainment spot.

The suit was filed by one Enock Musunguzi on November 16 at the High Court in Kampala. The two bodies are jointly sued with Hub Entertainment Limited, the proprietor of the Boda Boda Bar, located at Garden City, and popular with the youth.

Through Tumusiime, Kabega and Company Advocates, Musunguzi who states in the plaint that he is the owner of Plot 3 Wampewo Close is seeking damages, saying the noise pollution has stressed his family. He however does not indicate how much money he wants in damages.

"The plaintiff has been denied quiet enjoyment of his home, failure to realize basic benefits, entitlements, and privileges such as quiet peaceful sleep, private study, prayer or holding family functions," Musunguzi states.

He faults NEMA, saying it has a statutory obligation to ensure that he enjoys a quiet residential environment.

Musunguzi blames KCCA, saying it has failed in its statutory duty to clamp down on the noise levels from the entertainment spot.

Musunguzi contends that KCCA is aware that the entertainment spot did not obtain a night club licence prior to commencing operations.

He is demanding that the entertainment spot's license be cancelled, and for it to be permanently restrained from purportedly polluting the environment. Musunguzi wants court to compel both NEMA and KCCA to enforce their statutory duty.

Musunguzi asserts that the entertainment spot decided to set up such a business without taking into account that Golf Course Village is a residential.

He says it has failed to keep the noise levels low. Musunguzi claims his plot of land and property has depreciated sharply in value as a result of the noise. He however does not indicate the market value of the land plus the property.

The defendants are yet to respond to Musunguzi's claims. The case file has been allocated to Justice Elizabeth Musoke. However, a hearing date is yet to be fixed.

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