Batwa Asked to Work Towards Self Reliance

By APN Reporter


The Batwa communities have been urged to embrace sustainable

development activities and leave begging in order to improve on their

standards of living.

This call was  over the weekend made  by the Rubanda District senior labor officer Ritah Nalubiri   as the Batwa received a donation of 1.2

tons of maize flour as a relief food from Kabale District Orphans and

Vulnerable Children Living with HIV -KADOLAH.

According to Nalubiri, the Batwa community cannot improve and develop if they continue to depend on the visitors only and well-wishers.

“You need to invest in agriculture, save the little money you work

for, educate your children for a better future. It will be difficult

for you to get out of poverty and ignorance if you continue to focus

and depend on donations” Nalubiri said.

Andrew Buhungiro, the Director of KADOLAH said that  the Batwa  

communities are the most vulnerable people in the Districts of Rubanda

and Kabale, who have been badly hit by the coronavirus pandemic and the subsequent  lockdown.

The food relief donation benefited at least 319 families of the Batwa.

The Batwa of Murubindi and Kinyarushengye in Rubanda District,

including those of Kyevu in Kabale District.

A few Batwa own very little agricultural land, and the least

productive, in designated locations in hard-to-reach hilly terrain

near the Echuya forest while others remain squatters on other people’s land as they were not resettled by the government.

Before the declaration of the Echuya as a central government forest

reserve, the forest was heavily encroached upon.

Up to now, some activities such as wild hunting, collection of honey,

mushrooms, water, bamboo for basket making, building poles, making of bee hives and fire wood are being carried out by both Batwa and

non-Batwa dominant ethnic communities.

However, the Batwa illegally hunt in the forest due to lack of

alternative sources of food.