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Company Response

18 May 2020

Agilis Partners

Agilis Partners' response

"Response to Business & Human Rights Resource Centre"

 In March 2017, Agilis acquired land in Kiryandongo District, Uganda from private individuals pursuant to a purchase agreement in exchange for cash consideration.  Government did not grant or sell the land to Agilis. Between June 2017 and December 2017, Agilis completed extensive community consultation and integrated planning.  On 3 July 2017, Agilis held a preliminary stakeholder meeting with the District Security Committee to determine an approach.  On 6 October 2017, Agilis met with Local Government and held a Level 1 Stakeholders General Meeting.  In this meeting, Agilis and stakeholders discussed potential removal of individuals from the land and Agilis’s general investment plan in the District...

Based on this census and satellite imagery, Agilis’s legal counsel established that none of the individuals occupying the land had title or other legal, customary or bona fide claims to the land. Katende Ssempebwa and Company Advocates advised Agilis in this assessment.  The courts of law of Uganda have concurred with this perspective. Counsel advised that Agilis had the prerogative to seek forced evictions from the land.  Agilis decided against forced evictions due to the humanitarian risks this would pose to the individuals illegally occupying the land.  All individuals who have departed the land have done so pursuant to voluntary agreements in exchange for cash compensation...

Through 2018, Agilis entered into voluntary agreements with illegal occupants based on the above valuation framework. All agreements were witnessed by local government leaders and legal counsel.  Local leaders have remained engaged throughout the consultative and implementation processes.  Multiple individuals have raised grievances which have been addressed according to the grievance redress process.  Agilis has not evicted anyone from the land.  Allegations of violent aggression and forced evictions by Agilis are false.