The first hearing of the year for the Kaweri case took place at high Court Kampala in Uganda this week (February 10) amid concerns. During the hearing, the lawyers of the evictees informed that 325 out of the 401 plaintiffs had signed to take the compensation offer of the Attorney General, presented during a previous hearing in December last year. The compensation offer includes 3,814,570,050 Ugandan Shillings (950,000. euro) for special damages in a full and final settlement of the suit plus 150 million Shillings (37,000 euro) as costs of the suit.
As for the 76 plaintiffs whose decisions were not presented during the hearing, the judge decided to seek assistance from Mubende High Court to ensure they take informed decisions. Further clarity about their decisions are expected at the next hearing, scheduled for 12 March 2020.
Peter Baleke Kayiira, one of those 76 plaintiffs, who was imprisoned at Luzira in December and released last week (February 7), has been at the forefront in the struggle for redress of the plaintiffs since their brutal eviction in August 2001 to pave way for Kaweri Coffee Plantation.
As a human rights defender Baleke’s safety remains at risk. “My freedom and my life are both unpredictable”, he regretted after his release.
FIAN International calls on the State of Uganda to ensure his safety and protect him against any unlawful and arbitrary treatment that may occur. With the Kaweri Coffee Plantation being a 100% subsidiary of the Neumann Kaffee Gruppe (NKG), based in Hamburg/Germany, FIAN International also urges the Delegation of the European Union to the Republic of Uganda, the German Embassy in Uganda and the German Ministry of Foreign Affairs to take action to guarantee his protection.
For more information, please contact Valentin Hategekimana, Tel. +49-6221 65300-52, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
NOTES TO EDITORS:
- In 2001, the Uganda People’s Defense Force stormed the villages of Kitemba, Luwunga, Kijunga and Kiryamakobe in Mubende, forcibly evicting thousands of people from the land that they, and their ancestors, knew as their home. Leaving three deaths, dozens injured and the destruction of houses and crops in their wake, the land was leased to the Kaweri Coffee Plantation Ltd., a 100% subsidiary of the Neumann Kaffee Gruppe (NKG), based in Hamburg/Germany. Despite years of mobilization and legal struggle, the evictees have not yet seen justice and continue to suffer the collateral consequences of this brutal act.
- Take a look at the chronology of the case
- Read the Background study: Human Rights violations in the context of Kaweri Coffee Plantation/Neumann Kaffee Gruppe in Uganda.