President Museveni has issued a directive for Balaalo, who have non-fenced farmland in Greater Northern Uganda, including Lango, Acholi, and West Nile, to leave the region within three weeks.
During a meeting with residents of Okidi in Amuru district, he emphasized the recklessness of bringing cows into areas without proper control. The President instructed authorities to ensure that those with cows in non-fenced areas vacate immediately.
Additionally, President Museveni ordered Balaalo occupying government land, such as Lakang and Aswa ranch, to leave within three weeks.
He allowed them to hire trucks to move their cows and urged them to sell or dispose of the animals as they see fit. The directive comes as a response to the growing crisis of Balaalo settlement in the region.
The disagreement between Balaalo and the residents of Greater North revolves around issues of crop destruction and land ownership. The President emphasized that destroying crops is unacceptable, and he directed the Minister of Justice and the Attorney General to draft a law criminalizing this type of nomadism.
President Museveni acknowledged differing opinions on the matter and announced plans for a final meeting to reconcile those in favor of immediate eviction with those advocating for a more gradual approach.
He emphasized the need to address the ownership and renting issues separately from the immediate concern of crop destruction.
While recognizing the sensitivity of the Balaalo issue, especially in discussions about land ownership, President Museveni urged caution in public discourse.
He highlighted the importance of serious discussions to find a resolution and indicated that a conclusive meeting would be held in Entebbe to address the various perspectives on the matter.