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    FULL REPORT: How Al-Shabaab Attacked And Killed UPDF Soldiers In Somalia

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    Ugandan officials have said only four soldiers were killed in the attack when Al-Shabaab Islamist extremists attacked their base on Sunday in the latest of a series of bloody strikes against peacekeepers in Somalia. Lt. Col Deo Akiiki, the deputy army spokesperson confirmed the Sunday morning attack and said eight of the vehicles belonging to the terrorists were destroyed.

    However, Local officials told UK newspaper Guardian that as many as 46 Ugandan troops, part of the 22,000-strong regional force in Somalia, died in the attack by the al-Qaida affiliated al-Shabaab movement in the town of Bulamarer, 80 miles south-west of the capital, Mogadishu, at around 9am local time.

    Such attacks are designed to hasten the departure of Amisom, the military and policing coalition under the authority of the African Union, which has been fighting al-Shabaab for more than a decade.

    Al-Shabaab, which once controlled much of Somalia, wants to topple the western-backed government in Mogadishu.

    Militants detonated a suicide car bomb at the gate of the Ugandan army base in Bulamarer before storming into the complex. A second suicide car bomb targeted a convoy of Ugandan army reinforcements coming from a nearby base.

    “It was around 9am local time when the first car, which was a truck loaded with explosives, hit the Ugandan army base and then heavy gunfire broke out,” Ali Mohamed, a local farmer, said in a phone interview.

    “Then suddenly a second car, which was another truck with explosives and was driven by a young suicide bomber, hit a convoy of Ugandan forces trying to help their friends who were under attack,” he added.

    “I saw lots of smoke coming from inside the base, which was heavily guarded. Al-Shabaab fighters were shooting the soldiers. Forty soldiers died,” he said.

    Abdi Nur Hashi, a Somali military colonel stationed near the Ugandan base, said 46 soldiers were killed.

    “Most of them were friends. We used to share food and drinks together in their base,” he said. “We tried to help our Ugandan friends but there was also a suicide car which attacked our base. Many of the [Ugandan] soldiers died due to lack of emergency evacuation because the terrorists blocked the road,” he said.

    The colonel said one Somali soldier died and several others were injured.

    Al-Shabaab also attacked local civilians, setting houses and shops ablaze, witnesses said.

    Halima Nur, a local shop-owner, said she ran away to seek shelter, but when she returned in the afternoon there was “nothing but ashes”.

    “After raiding the military base, al-Shabaab came into our shops and burned down everything. My neighbour was also killed. I was the first to escape. I am lucky to be alive,” she told the Guardian.

    “Al-Shabaab several times warned us because we sell small items like cigarettes and juice to the soldiers, which al-Shabaab regards as apostasy.

    “We hoped for better security, but it seems it is deteriorating. Government officials are busy quarrelling with one another while al-Shabaab launches continuous bloody attacks. We need the world to help us and do not let Amisom leave this country,” she said.

    A car bomb in Mogadishu on 23 March killed at least six people and injured many more. Responsibility for the attack was claimed by al-Shabaab. Courtesy Photo.

    Abdifatah Haji Abdulle, the deputy governor of Lower Shabelle region, said al-Shabaab also attacked four more remote villages around Bulamarer on Sunday.

    “The death toll could be higher than our current estimate. These were coordinated attacks,” the deputy governor said.

    A series of recent attacks by al-Shabaab have underlined the movement’s resilience. In October the group was responsible for one of the bloodiest single terrorist attacks since 2001 when a bomb killed more than 500 people in Mogadishu.

    There are widespread fears that a significant reduction of Amisom’s strength could lead to a resurgence of al-Shabaab.

    In July 2016, the African Union announced plans for a staggered withdrawal, to begin in October 2018 and be completed by the end of 2020. A UN security council resolution, adopted last August, authorised a gradual reduction.

    A thousand troops were withdrawn last year and another 1,000 are due to leave by October this year.

    African Union mission spokesmen were unobtainable on Sunday night and there was no official comment from the mission’s headquarters in Mogadishu.

    A Ugandan army spokesman said 30 al-Shabaab militants had been killed “during their attempted attack on UPDF bases in Somalia”.

    “The struggle continues,” Brigadier Richard Karemire said on Twitter.

    Al-Shabaab spokesman Abdiasis Abu Musab said the militants killed 59 Ugandan soldiers.

    “Thanks God. The attack was successful. Our mujahideen killed 59 Ugandan soldiers during the raid. We have also lost 14 of the mujahideen,” he said.

    In January 2016 al-Shabaab killed more than 100 Kenyan soldiers at their base in El Adde, near Somalia’s southern border.

    Additional Information from Guardian newspaper

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    NATIONAL

    THIS IS WAR! Don’t Think You Are Big Because You Are Wearing A Colonial Wig On Your Head – Bobi Wine Stings D/Speaker Tayebwa, Applauds Zaake…

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    NUP boss Bobi Wine (R) and D/Speaker Thomas Tayebwa (L)

    National Unity Platform (NUP) leaders have stung Deputy Speaker, Rt. Hon. Thomas Tayebwa noting that he is seated with his ‘idiotism and emptiness.’

    Their statements follow a scuffle that happened on Tuesday, 29th, November during plenary where Mityana Municipality Member of Parliament, Francis Zaake fell out with Tayebwa.

    Appearing at the party headquarters in Kamwokya, Kampala, NUP president Robert Kyagulanyi Sentamu alias Bobi Wine furiously noted that they are not stupid and that history will tell.

    “Hon.Zaake, wherever you are I want you to know that me as an individual am proud of you, NUP is proud of you and all Ugandans. Thank you for not conforming to the nonsense of Parliament. Thank you for not shutting up. Thank you doing what exactly you were elected to do,” he said.

    Bobi Wine added, “To all of you leaders, we are elected to represent our people, stop this nonsense of talking about policy, there is no policy in Uganda. The only policy is to maintain the freedom of our people. We have been reduced to seeking rights to be human beings. We don’t have the right to be a human beings.

    “To you leaders, before you discuss anything else, before you talk about how much money they are going to give to Roko, before you discuss how much money is going to be stolen, before you discuss the increment of the Members of Parliament, let us discuss about the liberty and freedom and the human rights of our people.”

    Bobi Wine adduced that he was in shock of how he saw Tayebwa respond to Zaake’s issue that he raised during plenary.

    He divulged, “But on the other side, I shouldn’t have been shocked because this very Tayebwa Thomas, on the 28th, August, 2020, he was filmed torturing an employee of UMEME who caught him stealing power.

    “So to you Mr.Tayebwa wherever you are, we are not fools, you can pose off, you can feel so powerful, with that stupid colonial wig on your head. But we want to tell you that you are being watched and history will treat you exactly the way you treated Ugandans.

    “To all our fellow leaders, what should be priority now, are our leaders, they are abducting our people and killing them and you know that, that should be on your lips and all TV stations and radios.

    NUP deputy spokesperson, Waiswa Mufumbiro also sarcastically noted that now that Tayebwa is happy, he should take his family for holiday.

    “Some of you behave like you have habits of eating dead people. People like Tayebwa, I think you find fun because you beat up a person, I think you even eat dead bodies,” he said.

    Mufumbiro contended, “You give ultimatums because you are working for someone who compelled to cross from your former ideologies to necessitate yourself to feel comfortable in that small position of robbery and thuggery where you are seated with comfort of maximum idiotism and you think that your going to shape this country with your emptiness, Mr.Tayebwa. We know you have no respect for humanity but it is very unfortunate.”

    TAYEBWA SCOFFS AT ZAAKE

    During plenary yesterday, Zaake raised an issue of increased abductions where he cited Rule 78B and C, Rule 85 and part 5 of Appendix F of the Rules of Procedure.

    He said, “Mr.Speaker I raise on a procedurial matter under Rule 78B and C, Rule 85 and part 5 of Appendix F of the Rules of Procedure which requires us as MPs to base our conduct on full publication of the public interest.

    “The abduction of citizens especially here in the Central Region has reached a crisis level. The victims are mostly supporters of the Opposition.”

    He further cited cases of former presidential candidate, Joseph Kabuleta and Sheikh Ramathan Yahaya who were arrested on Monday in broad daylight by armed men.

    He added, “For 24 days now, NUP supporter, Kavuma Jamshid who also doubles as my president’s bodyguard was also abducted with three other youths and only this month alone, 100s of youths have been abducted and are nowhere to be seen.”

    It is here that Tayebwa stopped Zaake from speaking and asked him to sit down so he could be guided.

    Zaake however insisted and kept speaking until the microphone was turned off. He later caused commotion in Parliament.

    “If you (Zaake) want to do drama, go and do it in your constituency, you can’t do it on this floor. If you want pictures of people holding you up and how you were arrested to use during campaigns, we can organise for you, we are near national theatre,” Tayebwa warned.

    The Deputy Speaker later adjourned the session and ordered it to resume after 30 minutes.

     

    By Kalamira Hope

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    NEWS

    Former Presidential Candidate Sent To Luzira Prison, Charged With Sectarianism…

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    Joseph Kabuleta

    Court has constrained from hearing bail application for National Economic Empowerment Dialogue (NEED) boss, Joseph Kabuleta and remanded him to Luzira Prison till 14th December, 2022.

    The former Presidential candidate was today presented before the Chief Magistrates court in Nakawa and charged with sectarianism.

    Court however constrained to hear his bail application and remanded him till 14th, December, 2022.

    It should be remembered that Kabuleta was picked from his NEED offices in Bugolobi on Monday and was arrested by a group of men dressed casually who drove him away in a drone.

    Police however revealed that it is alleged that on 30th May 2022 in Kampala District, Joseph Kabuleta and others held a press conference under their Political Party, National Economic Empowerment Dialogue (NEED), where they alleged that social service delivery in Mbarara is based on ethnic lines of the Tutsi, Bahima, Bakiga and Banyakore.

    “Kabuleta and others shall be charged with Promoting Sectarianism C/S 41(1) of the PCA CAP 120,” police said.

     

    By Kalamira Hope

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    NATIONAL

    Parliament To Censure Minister Namuganza On Grounds Of Indiscipline…

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    The Deputy Chairperson of the Committee on Rules, Privileges and Discipline Hon. Charles Onen (L) tables the committee report on Hon. Persis Namuganza (R)

    Parliament is set to censure State Minister, for Lands, Housing and Urban Development, Persis Namuganza on grounds of indiscipline.

    Appearing before plenary today, the Deputy Chairperson of the Committee on Rules, Privileges and Discipline, Charles Onen tabled a committee report on the alleged misconduct and misbehaviour of Persis Namuganza.

    This comes after reports from the Committee on Rules, Privileges and Discipline indicating that Namuganza attacked Parliament that it is powerless and does not have the powers to censure her.

    Namuganza’s attack came in relation to her involvement in the Naguru-Nakawa land allocations.

    Parliament indicted Namuganza in May 2022 following a report by the Adhoc Committee on Naguru-Nakawa land where she was faulted for falsifying a presidential directive that saw Uganda Land Commission allocate land to certain entities.

    MPs during the plenary that sat on 13th, July 2022, noted that Namuganza went on and ridiculed Parliament and its leadership in relation to the findings of the committee.

    Bukooli County Central MP, Hon. Solomon Silwany however noted that such an attack on the leaders of Parliament affects the integrity of Parliament.

    “She should explain her conduct to us on why she would go out on social media and TV and bash the way Parliament is working,” he added.

    Namuganza however denied allegations and tasked her accusers to table evidence pinning her.

    Mr.Onen informed Parliament today that it is alleged that Hon Namuganza also went on media questioning the powers and integrity of the presiding officers to form Adhoc Committees to investigate the Nakawa-Naguru land allocation.

    “In its observation, the Committee found that the conduct and behaviour of Hon Namuganza constitutes gross misconduct and misbehaviour and is not befitting of a Member of Parliament, more so a Minister,” he said.

    Mr.Onen further revealed that the Committee on Rules, Privileges, and Discipline recommended that the House invokes Article 118(1) (b) of the Constitution and Rule 106 of the Rules of Procedure to censure Hon Persis Namuganza.

    Efforts to reach Namuganza were futile as she failed to pick up our phone calls.

     

    By Kalamira Hope

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