Tooro Queen Mother Best Kemigisa was on Monday grilled by the Commission of Inquiry into land matters over allegations that she sold land worth Shs4.5 billion belonging to the kingdom.
Queen Kemigisa was tasked to explain allegations that following the death of her husband and former king Patrick Kaboyo III in1995, sheforged letters of administration and transferred 9,121 acres of land into her names and three other people. She is said to have sold the land, which is located in Kibiito Sub-county, Kabarole District, to government at Shs4.5 billion despite from the royal clan head, Prince Charles Kamurasi.
However, Ms Kemigisa testified that the land in question was her husband’s private property not for the kingdom and accused some of her in-laws of driving a hate campaign against her.
“The land I changed from my husband’s names was private. He was a son and heir to the throne but he could not make a mistake to put other people or kingdom land into his names,” she explained.
The Commission presented evidence how in April 2005, Prince Kamurasi wrote to the Uganda Land Commission (ULC), indicating that the land she had sold contained cultural heritages and royal tombs and that Kamurasi was a trustee to it.
However, Queen Kemigisa said: “The burial grounds are well protected and sit on separate titles and all Kingdom land is in hands of the prime minister and other officials.”
She then launched a verbal tirade against her in-laws, whom she accused of attempting to grab her husband’s personal property.
Prince Gilbert Atwooki Mujogya and Prince Araali Patrick Kasagama last month appeared before the probe team and accused the Queen Mother of transferring the land into her names and later selling them to government without consulting the royal family. They also accused her trying to evict some tenants on the land.
“I am not surprised to hear those allegations but I went to court to get letters of administration and people who objected me are my sisters and brothers in law. My husband was wise to change all the property in his names,” she said on Monday.
She then demanded an apology from Prince Kamurasi and her other in-laws for what described as tarnishing her image.
However, the commission chairperson, Justice Catherine Bamugemereire asked the Queen Mother to present documents in the hand writing of the late king so that they compare with those presented by her accusers.