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In this first program of Growing Voices we dig deeper into the Wilmar International´s business, one of the largest palm oil corporations in the world. We look closer at the case of Kalangala in Uganda, where over one-hundred Ugandan small-scale farmers have gotten their land grabbed and been evicted by Oil Palm Uganda Limited, a subsidiary of Bidco Uganda Ltd, which is a venture co-owned by Wilmar International.
We listen to the testimony of the local leader in Kalangala, Uganda Jim Jem Salongo Gyagenda Kabiri, talking about the consequences of the land grabs to his community and the environmental degradation. We meet representatives from civil society: Frank Muramazi from NAPE/Friends of the Earth Uganda and Anne van Schaik from Friends of the Earth Europe fighting to highlight yet another case of land grabbing by Wilmar international.
This year the farmers have presented a lawsuit, claiming for compensation of their lost land and the caused damages. In December 2013 Wilmar International published a policy committing an environmentally and socially responsible palm oil industry. On their webpage we can read that they think that sustainable development is the only way forward.
María Selva Ortiz, integrante de REDES – Amigos de la Tierra Uruguay advirtió en Radio Mundo Real que las decisiones que se están tomando para esta iniciativa “violan la Constitución y la soberanía nacional”.
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