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A polluted river (Courtesy Photo)

Kitagwenda: Leaders, residents worried over reported water pollution by gold miners

Leaders and residents of Mahyoro town council in Kitagwenda district are worried over alleged water and soil pollution by gold mining firms.

Moses Mushabe, the area district councilor, said River Buhindagi, on which livelihoods of people and livestock in 10 villages of the town council depend, has been filled with residues from the gold mine operated by Chinese mining firm, Tyang Tyang.

Mushabe, who is also the deputy speaker, was reacting to the natural resources department budget proposals during the district’s budget conference.  

While responding to the concern, Kitagwenda district natural resources officer, Moses Turyamureba Bujara, said the mining firms have not been cooperative, adding that it was hard for the district officials to access the mines said to be heavily guarded.

Communities from the villages of Kitomi, Karokarungi, Kanyabikyere and Omukarere as well as Kyendangara, Buhindagi, Rwetuuma, Zambia, Kachindo depend on the River Buhindagi for water for domestic use and to water the animals. 

When contacted on November 11 to comment on the matter, Yusuf Mugarura, the gold mine site manager, referred this reporter to the energy and mineral development ministry, to explain the situation. He said they were duly licensed to operate in the area.  

Mugarura also accused the media of ‘interfering’ with investment projects in the country. 

River Buhindagi pours its waters into Lake George and also serves Buhweju and Ibanda districts.

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