NJERU – The executive director of the National Animal Genetic Resources Centre and Data Bank (NAGRIC & DB), Dr Charles Lagu, is living in fear after an anonymous letter dropped at his office threatened to end his life if he did not stop defending government land.
Dr Lagu has over the years been vehemently protecting government ranches, including Njeru in Buikwe and Ruhengyere and Nshaara in western Uganda, from grabbers.
And now it has emerged that in December 2019, anonymous people hired by the land grabbers have been sending threatening phone messages and letters to Dr Lagu, warning him to back off the pieces of land if he wants to live.
One of the threatening letters was dropped at Dr Lagu’s office in Entebbe on December 31. The group has threatened to put up trumped charges against Dr Lagu and have him jailed.
“The useless efforts of fighting people from government land will backfire on you. This is not your father’s land. It is not your property. We want to assure you that Police will not help you. Your days expired the day Joy Kabatsi left the ministry and her departure marked your exit too,” the anonymous letter reads in part.
“Trust me before January ends, we shall have you out of that office and the least we are getting you is a conviction. We have willing staff to testify against you. You are a selfish stupid man taking people for granted and you gave yourself all projects and want to eliminate fellow workers from office. You have employed your relatives and this must end,” the letter adds.
“We are giving you another chance to meet and we talk and we talk by January 2. If you avoid us, then write your will, whatever you have toiled for will be eaten by your thieving colleagues.”
The Director of Criminal Investigations Directorate, Ms Grace Akullo, has launched investigations into the source of the letters.
Mr Charles Twine, the CID spokesman, at the weekend said they have reinforced Dr Lagu’s security following the threats.
Dr Lagu also said he had received threatening messages from telephone number 0703 710 976, which Mr Twine said will be investigated.
The minister for East African Affairs, Maj Gen Kahinda Otafiire, is one of those accused of grabbing part of Njeru Stock Farm. Otafire told Parliament in November that he did not grab government land, but bought it from an individual.
The 1,099-acre farm located at Bukaya west village, in Njeru municipality, is one of the government farms managed under the National animal genetic resources centre and data bank. It hosts a demonstration farm, a breeding centre and a research centre, among other facilities. However, more than 504 acres, have been illegally acquired by individuals.
Otafire who tabled the documents said that he wants the government to leave the land that he had rightfully acquired. Among documents tabled are; copy of certificate of title, sale agreement copy, a judgement of the Buganda Lukiiko on the land dispute, copies of letters of administration among others.