Kampala — Mukono Diocese Bishop James William Ssebagala has been sued before the High Court in Mukono District for allegedly threatening to evict more than 500 residents from Nakanyonyi.
The petitioner, Mr Jackson Ntwatwa, who brought the suit on behalf of 500 others, claims that on several occasions, the land occupants were disturbed with threats of eviction by Church of Uganda officials acting on the directives of Bishop Ssebagala.
"On several occasions and most notably of October 8, 2016, the 1st defendant (Bishop Ssebagala) used his position and influence as the bishop of Mukono Diocese... and threatened to forcefully evict more than 500 occupants on FRV 7 Folio 25 land at Nakanyonyi. The land is suspected to belong to native Anglican Church of Uganda," Mr Ntwatwa states
He says the affected residents are not trespassers on the disputed land because Bishop Ssebagala and the Church of Uganda do not know its boundary lines.
"The plaintiff (Mr Ntwatwa) contends that in such a situation where the defendants (Bishop Ssebagala and Church of Uganda) did not know that the property belongs to them cannot allege trespass and Section 30 (1) of the Land Act provides for mediation in such a situation by appointing a mediator," he says.
The petitioner states that residents by an agreement executed from 1920s, and 2000-2016, the occupants of the contested land bought small plots of land from holders, some of whom had inherited it.
Through his lawyers, the petitioner wants court to issue a permanent injunction restraining the bishop, Church of Uganda and their agents from threatening to evict and intimidating the land occupants.