The Katikiiro of Buganda Kingdom, OWC Charles Peter Mayiga, has condemned Anti-EACOP agents including several opposition leaders and activists, who have been working tooth and nail to block oil exploration and the construction of the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP) in the Albertine region.
He referred to these actors as anti-development agents and enemies of Uganda, whose only wish is to see Uganda and her citizens lagging behind in terms of development.
“Uganda must become smarter by exploiting her natural resources, especially oil, and take advantage of the revenue we expect from it to benefit our people. The exploration must go ahead despite the backlash from the anti-development agents,” Mayiga stated.
The Buganda Premier said this while meeting officials from the Uganda National Oil Company (UNOC) and Petroleum Authority of Uganda (PAU) at the Kingdom’s headquarters in Bulange Mengo.
He assured the delegates from the two national entities of the Kingdom’s full support towards the exploration of oil within the Albertine region and its transportation to the outside markets.
Referring to other countries both within and outside Africa that have used revenue generated from oil exploration and oil products to develop, Mayiga challenged officials from the two government bodies to ensure that the oil development in the country benefits everyone, especially local communities.
According to different media reports, several demonstrations have been organized by opposition politicians and their agents within and outside Uganda, mostly targeting the construction of the East African Crude Oil Pipeline (EACOP), considering its significant role in the transportation of oil from the Albertine region to the Tanzanian coast of Tanga.
Opposition political parties’ leaders, including Bobi Wine and Dr. Kizza Besigye, have also openly criticized the move by government to develop Uganda’s oil and gas sectors. These claim that the oil exploration and eventual development will lead to environmental degradation as well as human rights abuses as some people will be resettled from their land.
However, these criticisms have been challenged by courts of law and environmental experts who state that the pipeline is safe. The rights violations claims have also been proven baseless by Human rights organizations and international courts of law who okayed the EACOP project.