By Najibu Mulema
The parliamentary committee on natural resources has ordered the cancellation of sand mining and fishing licences in possession of companies operating in Lwera along Masaka road.
The affected companies include, Acqua world owned by the prominent Pastor Samuel Kakande and Capital Estates owned by City tycoon, John Sebalamu.
In the past months, the committee started to carryout investigations following complaints by MPs over alerts of illegal sand mining and exportation by foreign companies. The committee found out that in 11 sites, only four belonged to foreigners and that these companies were issued licences without proper assessment of the impacts which they may cause to the environment.
According to the report by the committee, these two companies carried out illegal sand mining as long and the terms and conditions instituted to these companies are concerned. For example Aqua world was issued licence to establish fish cages but instead illegally got engaged in sand mining whereas other companies like Capital Estates mine beyond the required metres of Victoria protected zone.
The committee chairperson, Alex Byaruhanga ordered National Environmental Management Authority (NEMA) to effective December ensure that sand miners undertake independent assessment and acquire certification of sand mining technology ans NEMA should develop capacity to guide on appropriate sand mining technology.
“Commissioner land administration should cancel the titles issued in the Lwera wetland and ministry of lands should report to Parliament within three weeks on the progress of the cancellation of the titles,” committee report released on Wednesday asserts.