Uganda: Neumann Gruppe's subsidiary's appeal against 2013 court ruling that faulted company for unlawful forceful eviction to resume
Author: Witness Radio (Uganda), Published on: 27 November 2019
" Kaweeri Coffee land grabbing case re-trial resumes as evictees contiue to suffer gross human rights violations"
The re-trial of a 19-year-old Kaweeri Coffee land grabbing case resumes early this December 2019. Human rights groups have released a disturbing report which shows that Kaweeri Coffee evictees have suffered gross human rights violations ever since they were illegally and forcefully evicted from their land. Kaweeri Coffee Plantation limited is a Ugandan coffee producer, wholly-owned by the Neumann Gruppe, which is a German coffee producer.
The re-trial which started early this year had been paused to allow both parties to have a settlement out of court known as mediation which has been encouraged by the judiciary in all civil cases. It’s at this court’s seating that the trial judge will be informed by its mediators whether the mediation failed or succeeded and they will file their mediation report which will guide the judge to either proceed with the re-trial or not.
On 28 March 2013, Justice Choudry Singh ruled that the plaintiffs were illegally evicted without being compensated adequately and thus ordered compensation of approximately €11 million to the evictees. The judgement condemned the defendant’s behaviour for failing to take action yet they were informed about the planned evictions of the plaintiffs. The Judge, however, acquitted both defendants and ordered the Ugandan Investment Authority’s lawyers to pay the compensation awarded to evictees for allegedly misadvising the government to purchase the land. Kaweeri Coffee Plantation limited was dissatisfied with the ruling and thus appealed against it.