Friday, 11 November 2011

Kasese Municipality MP faces court over building in wetland

Kasese Municipality MP James Mbahimba could be prosecuted after the municipal authorities accused him of constructing a structure in a wetland on Kilembe Road in Nyamwamba Division.

The municipal authorities claim that the legislator is erecting an illegal structure and ordered him to stop forthwith but he has since defied the order. Mr Mbahimba is accused of erecting a structure said to be a shopping mall in a drainage channel and under the high power voltage line without an approved plan.

Legal route
Kasese Town Clerk Francis Byabagambi on October 13, reportedly issued a notice to Mr Mbahimba quoting section 32 of the Physical Planning Act, 2010, directing him to immediately stop the construction of the building in the channel and to wait for the council’s decision on his plans.

“Immediately stop the construction since your building is in a channel. Wait for advice from council officials and failure to comply with the notice you are entitled to pay 48 currency points (Shs960,000) fine, prosecution in courts of law and demolition of the structure,” the notice addressed to Mr Mbahimba reads in part.

The Kasese Municipal Mayor, Mr Godfrey Kabyanga, described Mr Mbahimba’s action as a controversy to his slogan during campaigns of ‘a clean and well-planned town’. Some of the councillors have since vowed to make sure Mr Mbahimba’s construction is stopped.

Councillors claim that the land, on plots 136 to 138, was reserved as a green belt and for washing bays. Attempts to get a comment from Mr Mbahimba were futile as he could not pick our calls but his political assistant Johnson Mwanamwolho claimed that the MP is being witch- hunted by his political rivals. “That is political persecution,” he said.