By Allan Kalangi
The Court of Appeal in Kampala has started hearing of the case that National Association of Professional Environmentalists (NAPE), Africa Institute for Energy Governance (AFIEGO) and Water and Environment Media Network (WEMNET) filed for cancellation of the Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) certificate of approval issued to Hoima Sugar Ltd (HSL).
AFIEGO, NAPE and WEMENT are some of the members of the Save Bugoma Forest Campaign (SBFC). The appeal, which was filed in May 2021, is against Hoima Sugar Limited and the National Environment Management Authority (NEMA). Despite protests from Bugoma forest host communities, Kikuube district local government, Uganda Wildlife Authority (UWA) and civil society members, NEMA issued Hoima Sugar Limited with with an ESIA certificate of approval for the company’s Kyangwali Mixed Land Use Project in August 2020. The certificate allowed HSL to grow sugarcane, set up an urban centre and engage in other degrading activities in Bugoma central forest reserve.