Mango Tree, a Chinese company, is on spot over engaging in sand mining in Lake Victoria contrary to government guidelines.
The National Environmental and Management Authority (NEMA) has said continued sand mining will lead to serious damage to the lake. “We want to categorically state that Mango Tree Group Ltd’s activities of engaging in sand mining are illegal,” Ms. Naomi Karekaho, the Nema spokesperson, stated.
But Mango Tree has gone on with the dredging in Lake Victoria. The company has also been accused of bribing Wakiso district council to endorse the dredging in Lake Victoria. The district chairman, Mr Matia Bwanika Lwanga, claimed that councilors received bribes so as to support the Chinese company’s activities on the lake.
But the district speaker, Mr Simon Nsubuga, said the district natural resources committee established that dredging has no significant negative effect on the environment.
On 2 September 2017, Mango Tree Group submitted an environmental impact assessment (EIA) for the exaction of sand from three sites on the lake, which NEMA rejected on an environmental impact basis.
“We want to categorically state that Mango Tree Group Ltd’s activities of engaging in sand mining are illegal. We only cleared them [Mango Tree Group Ltd] to manufacture ships after they secured a license from the Uganda Investment Authority, not carrying out dredging on the lake shores,” said Karekaho.