Uganda: Govt Impounds 80 Trucks With Raw Minerals From Karamoja

The Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development on Monday impounded more than 80 lorries for transporting raw minerals out of Moroto District without documents.

The trucks were impounded in a joint operation led by Karamoja regional minerals inspector, Mr Gerald Eneku, and the Mineral Protection Unit.

Mr Eneku said the Energy ministry had made several sensitisations, including encouraging companies to get licences but some declined.

The inspector also said there has been illegal transportation of marble and limestone from Moroto District to Jinja and Kapeka factories causing government and Karamoja districts to lose billions of shillings.

He said in a single day, more than 100 trucks allegedly transport minerals from Moroto to cement companies in tororow.

"When you look at all these trucks, they don't have any document from the Energy ministry," he said.

Mr Eneku said there has been hide and seek when it comes to payment with transporters claiming it is the factory owners who are supposed to pay the royalty while the factory owners say it is the suppliers who are supposed to pay, something that contravenes Section 3 and 4 of the Mining Act 2003.

The latest development has been welcomed by locals across the sub-region.

Mr Peter Teko, one of the residents in Moroto, said Karamoja minerals were being taken to develop other regions and robbing their sub-region of such opportunities.

"Our children are left without jobs because the factories are being constructed elsewhere," he said.

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