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Victory for Environmental and Heritage Conservation in Jinja

Kiiza Eron at The Environment Shield Limited and Gawaya Tugule have successfully saved a row of endangered Milicia excelsa (Mvule) trees along Nile Avenue in Jinja City. Jinja City Council and Zhongmei Engineering Group Ltd had planned to cut them down for development.

The court declared the tree cutting a threat to residents’ rights to a clean environment and the city’s heritage, issuing a temporary injunction to halt the cutting until proper consultations and safeguards are in place.

Milicia excelsa (Mvule) trees along Nile Avenue in Jinja City

The court emphasized the importance of preserving the cultural and touristic value of the Mvule trees, as protected by the Constitution and the National Environment Act, and stressed the need for public involvement in environmental decisions, noting that the Respondents failed to adequately engage the public, violating constitutional and statutory provisions. The cutting of Mvule trees was seen as a significant threat to environmental rights.

Kiiza stated:
“The case was won. What remains is spreading awareness about the importance of urban trees and the illegality of destroying them without NEMA approval.”

The court directed that future actions regarding the trees must involve consultations with relevant authorities and NGOs. Sustainable practices like trimming and pruning were mandated, along with replacing any felled trees with similar young ones.

We look forward to collborating on Environmental Rights work with Kiiza to protect people and the planets right to a clean environment

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