Jinja – Residents of Walukuba-Masese Division in Jinja have petitioned authorities at National Water and Sewerage Corporation (NWSC) over increased encroachment on the corporation’s reserve land which puts the lives of the community in danger.
In a letter dated June 25th 2020, addressed to the NWSC Jinja area office and signed by concerned community members of Wakukuba –Masese Division, the later contend that illegal developments on the reserve land may cause damages to the pipes putting their lives at risk.
‘’We the community of Walukuba /Masese division has come out to notify your office of the land encroachers near your property namely water pipes which we understand connect other places to the NWSC grid’’, reads in part the petition.
The residents in their petition copied to the area land committee, Council authorities and the resident District commissioner added that ‘’we saw it very prudent to notify your office to avoid dangers which may arise from these encroachers activities on this land’’.
Speaking to Red pepper on a telephone interview, Dr.Chrales Okuonzi, NWSC Jinja area General Manager said council authorities were illegally allocating titles to developers to construct over and in the reserve land of water pipelines which have existed since the 1950s.
‘’These are big pipes carrying huge volumes of water and the water forces will weaken the foundation which may later cause death due to rupture of pipes. There are people who have taken advantage of council and encroach on Nwsc land which is dangerous to the whole region because we not only pump water for Jinja but also other districts in Busoga and Buikwe’’, said Okuonzi.
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Agnes Atwoki, the Nwsc Senior Public relations officer at Jinja office said, ‘’People want to develop over these lines and the council is also to some extent in some places allocating people titles over these lines. This is a threat not only to NWSC and it’s a threat to future generations. The law under Nwsc operates clearly says when there is infrastructure in that line you can’t go ahead and develop along the lines. When that line gives way or it’s rotten, we can maintain these lines and tomorrow if these lines give way people will die’’, she told Red Pepper Digital.