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The Lake has right of way-NEMA sets terms for development of Speke Resort at Kitubulu

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The Lake has right of way-NEMA sets terms for development of Speke Resort at Kitubulu

The National Environment Management Authority, NEMA has announced conditions that must be followed by Speke Hotel (1996) Limited for approval of their application for a Lake Shore User Permit.

The development follows a Stop Notice issued to the developer by NEMA to halt works at Kitubulu until a Lake Shore User permit.

However, in a statement released on Wednesday, NEMA noted that given that water levels have risen and covered part of the previously approved project area; and the fact that water levels will continue to fluctuate, NEMA has set some conditions to protect the lake, before the application for the Lake Shore User Permit can be considered.

The conditions are; 

The lake has a right of way and must be protected even when it expands onto the developer’s private and titled land;

Speke Hotel (1996) Limited submits a revised site development plan to NEMA, with proposed structures located at least 20 meters away from the current water line;

The effluent treatment plant be shifted further away from the lake as guided during previous site inspections;

A waste management plan be submitted to NEMA guaranteeing that there will be NO waste discharged into the lake even after treatment;

The project engineering designs be revised to provide for a shoreline protection mechanism to manage fluctuations in water levels without obstructing the lake;

That Speke Hotel (1996) Limited provides NEMA with a copy of the land title(s) for the project site.

The statement adds that whereas it is true that NEMA issued an ESIA certificate to the developer in 2020; it is mandatory for developers to obtain a Lake Shore User Permit for projects within the 200meter buffer zone of a lake even after obtaining an Environment and Social Impact Assessment Certificate.

The project area in question is the former Ssese Gateway Beach. In December 2021 NEMA stopped activities at the site after contractors were found dumping murram into the lake with the intention to recover the original project area that had been taken up by rising water levels.

NEMA has since had several engagements with the developer, including a site inspection by the NEMA Board, to guide the developer on how best to sustainably undertake the project without compromising the ecological integrity of Lake Victoria.

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