The Albertine Watch demands the immediate release of arrested environmental human rights defenders in Hoima

The Albertine Watch demands that Hoima police and authorities immediately release the 5 Environmental Human rights defenders who were arrested in Hoima on September 15 and 16th 2020 by Hoima police.

The arrested include Sandra Atusinguza, journalists Venex Watebawa, Joshua Mutale, Sam Kayiwa, Ismail Kashokwa.

The EHRD’s arrested are parts of the Climate Action Network who traveled to Hoima to participate in a peaceful demonstration aimed at stopping the destruction of the Bugoma forest for sugarcane growing and to stop the risks of oil activities to critical biodiversity resources in the Albertine region. Two of the defenders were arrested on their way to a local radio talk show at Spice FM in Hoima where they were supposed to discuss the ecological risks and impacts associated with the destruction of Bugoma Forest for sugarcane growing and allowing oil activities in critical biodiversity areas including Lake Albert, Murchison Falls National Park among others.

The talk show was being held with the views of exposing the illegalities involved in the Tilenga and EACOP oil projects that has attracted dubious foreign companies conniving with government to conduct illegal and irregular Environmental and Social Impact Assessments (ESIA), issue ESIA certificates of approval, proceed with illegal activities in forests, national parks, rivers, lakes, wetlands and others without a complete and approved mitigation plans.

The Albertine Watch is working closely with local, national, and international legal teams, and human rights defenders protection groups to secure the release of the 5 Environmental human rights defenders currently being detained at Hoima Central Police Post.

Update 1

Sandra Atusinguza and two others have been released without charges

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