There is a bitter fight among the children of the late John Omaya over the rights and usage of the more than 8,000 hectares of land hosting Atiak Sugar Factory in Amuru district.
A section of the family members led by Peter Okee Ogik and Emmanuel Ogik accuse their sibling led by Okot Akena Ogik of irregularly leasing out the family land to Horyal Investments Holding Company Limited without their consent.
Okee also accuses his elder stepbrother Akena, who was given administrative rights over the land following the demise of their father John Omaya of changing ownership of the land in Pacilo village, Atiak sub county, Amuru district from customary to freehold before leasing it out to Horyal Investments Holding Company Limited in 2014 for 49 years.
Last month, Okee and Ogik through their lawyers of Ms. Asimwe Advocates and Solicitors dragged Ogik to court demanding their rights over the land and benefits from its returns. They contend that their interests were not catered for since the land was leased without their consent and the benefits acruing from the land have been declared to the other family members.
They also want the court to halt the operations of Horyal Investments Company Limited which owns Attiak Sugar Factory.
On Thursday, the matter came before the Gulu High Court Deputy Registrar, Hussein Ntalo Nasulu for mentioning. Okot Akena Ogik asked for an out-of-court settlement, saying that this is a family matter. Okee agreed to the request noting that they are comfortable as long as the matter is settled amicably and in favor of all the parties.
Okee said that they ran court after making various attempts in vain to settle the dispute. He is optimistic that it will now be fruitful upon the request of the respondents. Upon hearing submissions from both parties in the presence of their legal representatives, the Gulu High Court Deputy Registrar Hussein Ntalo Nasulu appointed the court’s senior counsel Sylvia Oyet to chair the mediation and file a report on October 11th, 2022 to guide the proceeding of the matter.
The contested land is found in Gem village, Pacilo parish, Atiak sub county in Amuru district.