EA court strikes out suit against Uganda over L. Victoria flooding


By LUKE ANAMI

The East African Court of Justice has struck out a case in which five Kenyans sued the Ugandan government for not managing the outflows of water from Lake Victoria which resulted in flooding.

The floods displaced people in countries on the lake basin and damaged their property.

The five had sued the government of Uganda, East African Community Secretary General, and the Lake Victoria Basin Commission (LVBC).

“This matter is hereby struck out on the grounds that the petitioners included the Attorneys General of Kenya and Tanzania who were not parties to the case,” read part of the judgement.

“However, the petitioners are at liberty to amend their case by excluding the wrong parties they had included.”

The case was first filed in May 2020 by the five lawyers who argued that Uganda is greatly impacting the lake by releasing more water than is allowed by a legal agreement between Kampala and Egypt.

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The case was filed by former Law Society of Kenya president Isaac Okero and four others challenging the Government of Uganda, the EAC Secretary General and LVBC over alleged violations of the Treaty by abdicating their responsibilities of proper management of the outflow of waters from Lake Victoria and failing to adhere to a policy for the release of water into River Nile from the lake.

“As citizens of Kenya, who reside in Kisumu, and are owners of real property located within the vicinity of the shores of the Lake, we have been greatly inconvenienced by the decision by Uganda,” Mr Okero said in the court filings.

“As applicants, we plead for the prayers and orders that Uganda is responsible for the compensation of loss and/or damage suffered by the applicants.”

The five Kenyans said the Ugandan government failed to control floods around the shores of Lake Victoria, resulting in the displacement of people and damage to their property.

They accused Uganda of violating their fundamental human rights by breaching the EAC Treaty and the Nile Basin Comprehensive Framework Agreement on how much water Kampala is supposed to release from Lake Victoria.

Uganda’s breach has caused flooding that has damaged property and displaced more than 50,000 people around the Lake.

The rise of water levels in Lake Victoria destroyed several roads, hotels, and houses constructed near the shores.

Kituo Cha Sheria, in their application dated July 24, 2020, want to be enjoined in the case.

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Source link : https://www.theeastafrican.co.ke/tea/news/east-africa/east-africa-court-strikes-out-suit-lake-victoria-3474806

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Publish date : 2021-07-15 16:44:06

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