The Head of the Mineral Unit of Uganda Police, (SP) Jesca Keigomba has been faulted for telling lies to the Parliamentary committee on Natural Resources and handed over to the Parliament Criminal Investigation Department (CID) for further interrogation.
Superintendent of Police (SP) Keigomba who had taken oath before the committee vowing to only tell the truth was seen to later turn around and insist that the Mineral Police Unit never evicted artisanal miners in Buhweju and Mubende.
The officer had appeared before the committee in a delegation led by the Minister of State for Energy, Simon D’jung and the Police Director Operations, Asuman Mugyenyi to respond to the issues of evicting miners from Buhweju and Mubende mines.
Keigomba told members that there were no evictions of the miners but that the people only learnt that Police was intervening in their matters and they chose to vacate the mines.
“I want to confirm to this committee that we didn’t evict anyone from Buhweju. When people of Buhweju heard information that Mineral Police was going to the area, they chose to leave,” Keigomba told MPs.
This angered several legislators who said it is absurd that the police officer, under oath, would lie yet the Minister in his submission had highlighted to the effect that there were people who were evicted.
“We have detected that the officer is telling lies, even when the Minister has signed a document and referred to evictions saying that the evicted landlords can go back to their premises,” noted Buhweju County MP, Francis Mwijikye.
The legislators later requested that the Police boss be handed over to the Parliament CID for lying while he was under oath.
The committee Chairperson thus ruled handing over Keigomba to the police on allegations that she had lied on oath.
In August, the Mineral Police unit evicted over 20,000 miners in Buhweju on grounds that they engaged into illegal mining activities in areas which had been licensed for exploration to Hubel Jiu-Zhou Geological Exploration Company Limited, a Chinese company.