Listeners Club asked to use Community Green Radio (CGR) to fight for rights

Partners of NAPE visit the CGR listiners clubs









By Precious Naturinda

Residents in the oil affected communities in Albertine Region have been asked to corporate in fighting against social injustices that come with oil discovery in western Uganda. In September 2015 various community Green Radio listeners clubs form Kigaga, Butimba and Kyakatemba have been visited by Allan Kalangi, the Manager of the Sustainability School at the National Association of Professional Environmentalist (NAPE) and programme officer in charge of CGR, together with some of NAPE´s international Partners.

Siegfried Schroeder, the East African Regional Director for Rosa Luxemburg Foundation, which supports NAPE to fight social injustices, says during the visit that knowledge is power and therefore people should get more trainings and knowledge of what takes place in their area.

Elke Kuhne, the Green Radio consultant, states that the challenges like land grabbing, poor compensation and gender issues among others that come with developments need concerted efforts for people to fight as one voice.

Allan Kalangi mentions that many people have failed to utilize the available resources and wait to be given money. He says when people engage in farming and other activities, poverty can be eradicated for communities. In addition Rev. Jack Ruhindi, a member of Kigaga Sustainability School, says many people in villages have land, which can be utilized to get out of poverty.

Herbal medicines disappearing due to environmental degradation

Source: Lisa Mathiasen, Copyright: CC BY-NC 2.0









By Precious Naturinda

With the high rate of forest degradation and encroachment on sacred sites, indigenous medicinal plants growing in these areas are slowly facing extinction. Nehemirwa Burandina of Kaabale parish in Buseruka Sub County reports that as a consequences one now has to go miles away to get the medicine. Natives and traditional healers in Uganda and Africa at large have a long history of using indigenous plants for a wide variety of medicinal purposes. “People used to cut open tree barks and use the inside part as medicine”, reports Nehemirwa Burandina.

Beyond their medicinal benefits, indigenous plants were a staple of indigenous people’s diet before Western contact. Women would bathe children with shrubs and also use them in case of skin diseases and other illnesses, explains Jowanina Birungi, a resident of Bulindi parish in Kyabigambire Sub County in Hoima district.

Sacred natural sites are of spiritual and cultural importance and therefore should not be easily encroached on, while natural resources in these sites should be protected, claims David Kureeba, the officer in charge of forests at National Association of Professional Environmentalists (NAPE). However, sacred natural sites are faced with increasing threats of destruction due to developments which have also eroded the customary governance systems of their custodial communities. David Kureeba argues that if the government comes up to protect and respect the sites, the rate of degradation will be reduced.