Residents residing in four villages in Wakiso District, namely Bumera, Buteregga, Busawuli, and Kongojje, are facing significant challenges due to the operations of a nearby stone quarry. Flying stones from the quarry, managed by King Long Stone Company, have caused damage to property and posed health risks to the affected communities.
Many residents, like Mr Meddie Makumbi from Busawuli, have suffered property damage, including roof destruction and damage to household items. While some residents within a 200-meter radius of the quarry were compensated, those within a 500-meter radius were left out, leading to frustration and concerns over their safety and livelihoods.
The situation is dire for residents such as Mr David Bbosa, an elderly resident battling hypertension, who experiences health complications whenever stone blasting occurs. Similarly, pregnant women face risks, with one resident reporting a miscarriage due to heavy vibrations from the quarry.
Residents also complain about the company’s failure to address environmental concerns, including excessive dust and inadequate safety measures during stone crushing operations. Despite these challenges, the company’s management claims to have compensated all affected individuals as per regulatory guidelines.
Efforts by residents to seek fair compensation and relocation have been met with obstacles, including undervaluation of property and reluctance from the company to facilitate relocation. Meanwhile, local leaders acknowledge the residents’ grievances and urge cooperation to find a solution.
The National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) has previously issued guidelines to regulate stone quarry operations, emphasizing measures to mitigate environmental and health risks. However, residents continue to face challenges, underscoring the need for effective enforcement and community engagement to address their concerns.