Migingo is a 2,000 square-meter island in Lake Victoria. The island was a matter of dispute between Uganda and Kenya, but the issue ended fast and peacefully, after there was conducted a research that showed that the most part of the island belongs to Kenya. Uganda still hasn’t fully accepted the final decision simply because the waters surrounding the lake are very lucrative in the fishing business. This is why so many people are living on the island.
Two Kenyan fishermen, Dalmas Tembo and George Kibebe, claim to have been the first inhabitants on the island.
When they settled there in 1991, it was covered with weeds and infested with birds and snakes.
Later, other fishermen from Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania came to the island because of its proximity to fishing grounds rich with Nile perch.
Back in 2009, an official census put the population of Migingo at 131, already pretty high for a small, uninviting rock island.
Right at this point, the population is said to have reached 1,000 according to an RT documentary.
Hundreds of people flocked to the island when they saw an opportunity to catch large quantities of fish and sell them to exporters.
Nexe to Migingo is a larger and abandoned island that no one goes to live, because the myth says that it is the home of a demon.
Even though police frequently watches over them, pirate boats continue to attack the fishermen’s boats and try to steal their fish.
The island of Migingo is so crowded that you can hardly walk through it. The houses are literally glued to one another and there is so little space for kids to play. Even though the island is overcrowded, the people feel safe there instead of moving to the neighbouring island, where they will be easier targets for pirates and gangs.