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    MONEY & POWER: Wounded Minister Determined To Go Down With Her Thriving Nemesis – 5 Reasons Why “M7’s Women” Kadaga And Nankabirwa Can’t Stop Fighting…

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    Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga (L) and (R) is Government Chief Whip, Ruth Nankabirwa

    There’s a long lasting battle between two top female figures in President Yoweri Museveni’s National Resistance Movement (NRM) government, and it seems the tension is not about to subside now.

    The fight between Speaker of Parliament, Rebecca Kadaga and Government Chief Whip, Ruth Nankabirwa gained momentum during a parliamentary session yesterday after a revelation was made that the latter was openly decampaigning the earlier for speakership.

    Kadaga, the incumbent speaker of Parliament is vying to retain her position after successfully beating competition from National Unity Platform (NUP’s) Bridget Babirye and Forum for Democratic Change (FDC’s) Salaamu Musumba to the Kamuli Woman Member of Parliament position on an NRM ticket.

    For Ruth Nankabirwa, who contested on the same NRM ticket for a legislative slot, she will not be representing the people of Kiboga as their woman member of parliament in the next term after she lost to NUP’s Christine Kaaya. Nankabirwa had held the same position since 1996.

    Before the parliamentary polls that saw Nankabirwa lose out and Kadaga victorious, there was a revelation that the fight between the two was a power struggle where the earlier was suggested to replace the latter as speaker of Parliament in the NRM circles.

    That fact that Nankabirwa now can’t neither be nor elect the next speaker since the head of the 11th Parliament will be chosen from only the elected MPs, by themselves doesn’t also erase the reality that the “close women” of President Museveni still have a special disliking for each other.

    According to inside sources, Nankabirwa has been mobilising MPs of the NRM on social media platforms to vote against Kadaga.

    On learning of the same yesterday, Kadaga warned Nankabirwa to “shut up and stop telling lies” about her.

    They have always publicly blasted each other in public, not once, not twice but on a numerous number of occasions.

    In the NRM party’s Central Executive Committee (CEC) meeting last year, the two attacked each other in front of their supreme leader, Gen. Yoweri Museveni.

    Kadaga accused Nankabirwa of yet again using her same social media tactic to decampaign her in the CEC elections.

    Nankabirwa was openly supporting and rallied other colleagues to vote for Persis Namuganza.

    In the WhatsApp voice that Nankabirwa owned up, she was clearly heard campaigning for Namuganza by accusing Kadaga of working for the opposition to fail the agendas of NRM government and polices.

    “It’s me, Ruth Nankabirwa, this is my voice and I’m supporting Namuganza because we don’t want judas who is working with the opposition to undermine our party in Parliament. CEC is a very important organ in NRM, I will not work with someone who disrespects CEC, I ask you to support Namuganza because she will help us,” she said in the audio.

    Kadaga eventually defeated state minister for Lands Persis Namuganza to retain her position as the second national vice chairperson (female) for the NRM-party during polls held on Thursday. Kadaga polled 6,776 votes against Namuganza’s 3,882 votes to retain her seat.

    The former Presidential press secretary,  Joseph Tamale Mirundi earlier on last year revealed that the battle between Nankabirwa and Kadaga is clearly all about succession in both the NRM party and government.

    He said on the  STV Sharp Talk political show last year before Nankabirwa was defeated in the January election that the outgoing Kiboga woman Member of Parliament was fighting her Kamuli NRM counterpart so that she can pave her way to the speakership of parliament in case she bounced back in Parliament in absence of her arch rival.

    According to Tamale Mirundi, Nankabirwa aided Kadaga’s opponents to beat her so she would have more chances for the speakership.

    Before the elections, the motormouthed Tamale Mirundi predicted that Nankabirwa would fail.

    He said, “Nankabirwa is an agent of the Mafia gang but praise God that she is going to fail in these coming elections.”

    “The difference between Nankabirwa and Kadaga is knowledge and wisdom, Kadaga is far from Nankabirwa, secondly, Nankabirwa was promised the Speakership post, that is why she is undermining Kadaga, this has caused alot of wrangles within NRM MPs those supporting her and those supporting Kadaga. She should be punished by her voters,” Tamale added.

    He described Nankabirwa as one of the “dangerous fellows who have created trouble for Museveni purposely to get money”.

    “A speaker must be neutral but because Nankabirwa is too shallow to see this that is why she is fighting Kadaga. A speaker is different from a government Chief Whip, that is why in many countries once you become a speaker you resign from your constituency because you must be neutral. Nankabirwa has destroyed the credibility of NRM MPs because every bill they want to pass she asks for money from Museveni and Kadaga fights it always. As a political scientist if I analyse Nankabirwa I see her as a very big barricade in NRM’s way of living in the next 20 years,” he said, adding that Nankabirwa will never be equal mentally or academically to Kadaga.

    He also warned NRM party leaders to be careful because they are many people who worked for the party but they have been humiliated by some leaders within the party who have ill motives

    By Baron Kironde

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    CRIME

    Ssegirinya, Ssewanyana Lawyers To Challenge DPP Abodo’s Plan To Hide Witnesses, Mabirizi Wants Trial To Be Halted Over Constitutional Court Petition…

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    Lawyers representing embattled Kawempe North Member of Parliament (MP) Muhammad Ssegirinya, Makindye West’s Allan Ssewanyana and other accused persons are set to put up a spirited legal fight against the Director Public Prosecution (DPP) Justice Jane Abodo’s plans to hide the State witnesses in the main criminal trial before the Crimes War Division of the High Court.

    On Thursday, Justice Abodo, through her Assistant Lino Anguzo, the lead prosecutor in the trial told the pre-trial presiding judge Justice Elizabeth Jane Alividza that they have filed an ex-parte application to allow the state to protect the witnesses from the media and the public when they are testifying.

    Lino told Court that the witnesses they want to protect are very instrumental in their case and they will play a strong part to help Court to deliver justice to the accused persons and the deceased.

    However, speaking to theGrapevine, Geoffrey Turyamusima, one of the lawyers representing the accused persons insisted that they have agreed with their clients to challenge the witness protection application.

    “No, we are going to challenge that application, they have disclosed to us the witnesses who are set to testify against our clients and we have been seeing some of these witnesses in the media.

    “They are the family members of the deceased, friends and security personnel. Now, what do they want to protect?” Turyamusima wondered.

    Court has not yet set the hearing date for the application and other applications including the human rights enforcement application and the bail applications of all the accused persons.

    Other accused persons on the file are; Jackson Kanyike, Jude Mugerwa, Bull Wamala, Mike Sserwadda and Jude Muwongo.

    They are all together with the legislators battling murder, attempted murder and terrorism charges.

    State alleges that the accused persons were behind the Greater Masaka panga wielding goons who killed over 28 elderly people.

    LAWYER MABIRIZI WANTED TO HELD THE TRIAL

    In a new development, controversial incarcerated city lawyer Hassan Male Mabirizi has applied to the Crimes War Division of the High Court to halt the pre-trial of the accused persons until the determination of his Constitutional petition against the Attorney General.

    In his Constitutional petition, Mabirizi insisted that Ssegirinya and Ssewanyana are being politically persecuted by the state and the additional criminal charges brought against them are unjustifiable.

    However, Turyamusima told theGrapevine that they will oppose Mabirizi’s application to stay proceedings of their clients because he doesn’t want them to rot in prison given that the Constitution Court is going to take a lot of time to determine his Constitutional petition.

    Turyamusima added that what they want as per now is a speedy trial for their clients because they have established that the state doesn’t have evidence against them.

    He emphasised that the only application filed by Mabirizi, which they will support is the one where he calls for merging of the two files, one at the Crimes War Division of the High Court and the other at Masaka High Court.

    Recently, the accused persons applied for the merging of both files and the presiding judge promised that their matter will be handled in the pre-trial process.

    Early this year, Justice Musa Sekaana, the head of the High Court Civil Division Kampala sentenced Mabirizi to 18 months imprisonment on charges of contempt of Court.

     

    By Sengooba Alirabaki

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    AFRICA FOCUS

    UPDF Commandos Join Deadly Operation To Hunt Top Ugandan Terrorists Who Escaped From DRC Prison…

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    Commandos of the Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) have joined the deadly operation to hunt for and arrest top Ugandan terrorists who escaped from the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) prison early this week.

     Brig. Gen. Felix Kulayigye, the UPDF spokesperson confirmed the development and explained to theGrapevine that the reason why they joined the DRC’s army FARDC was after establishing that among the 822 prisoners who escaped, there were top terrorists who were recently arrested.

     “Since we joined the operation, we have already arrested more than 150 prisoners who escaped from a government prison in Butembo town. We are very sure that all of them will be arrested because them being out there is a threat to the entire region’s security,” he said.

     He added that preliminary investigation established that ADF terrorists were involved in the attack and their top aim was to help their friends to escape and join them to continue terrorising the entire region.

     DRC government also claims that the operation, which took only 15 minutes was masterminded by ADF terrorists. The prison was allegedly raided after ADF learnt that their friends who were arrested by the security were set to be evacuated to other big government prisons.

     Captain Anthony Mualushayi, the spokesperson for the operation hunting for the escaped prisoners revealed that the attackers come from Mwalika valley and were 80 in number.

    They used their weapons and machetes to open the prison doors to help their own including a one Kizito and other 12 deadly ADF terrorists from Uganda to escape.

     Capt. Mualushayi added that over 8 people were killed in the operation including five assailants, two policemen and a prisoner who was killed by the terrorist when was resisting their orders.

     He said that by the time reinforcements came, the terrorists had fled the place.

     However, they managed to trace their tracks and arrested two of them with AK47 guns and several rounds of ammunitions.

     UPDF decided to join DRC to hunt DRC for ADF terrorists after they made several attacks on Ugandans that left some victims dead.

     

    By Sengooba Alirabaki

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    CRIME

    Speaker Among, Top Parliament Staff To Be Quizzed Over MP Kagabo’s Shs40m Bribe Allegations; Legislator Risks Losing His Bukoto South Seat…

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    MP Twaha Kagabo (L) and Speaker Anita Among (R)

    Detectives from the office of the Inspector General of Government (IGG) are set to record statements from the Speaker of parliament Annet Anita Among and other parliamentary staff on the allegations of giving Shs40m bribe to Members of Parliament.

    Ali Munira, the spokesperson of the office of the IGG revealed that their detectives have widened their investigations and a number of witnesses will been summoned to record statements over Dr. Twaha Kagabo’s bribe allegations.

    She declined to confirm whether speaker Among will record a statement.

    However, multiple credible sources in the IGG’s office confirmed that Speaker Among will record a statement on grounds that she is a subject matter in the allegation.

    Kagabo claims that in July this year, he received a phone call telling him to go to Nakasero at the home of speaker Among and pick his gift. When he reached Among’s house, he was given Shs40m and told that it was a package from parliament administration prepared for legislators.

    Sources at the IGG’s office divulged that Kagabo has recorded two statements and was ordered to report to the IGG’s office every day to establish how far the investigations against the allegations have reached.

    Sources added that among other people the detectives want to pick statements from are officers from Uganda Communication Communication who will help to verify the owners of the phone numbers which were used to call Kagabo to allegedly go to the Speakers home, to pick his gift.

    The Investigators will also rely on the evidence of the CCTV cameras at the speaker’s home around Nakasero to establish whether the legislator was seen at the home of the speaker at that particular time.

    Among denied all the allegations and recommended that the legislator be taken to Rules, Privileges and Disciplinary parliamentary Committee and be investigated.

    Sources in parliament revealed that the speaker will also testify in the Committee to defend herself.

    However, Uganda’s representative in the East African parliament and a renown senior legislator James Kakooza told theGrapevine that Kagabo is in big trouble and he cannot survive losing his Bukoto South parliamentary seat.

    He explained that the Leadership Code is very clear that when a person holding a public office receives a gift worth more than Shs400,000, he or she has to declare it to the IGG within 24 hours which he failed to do.

    He added that it will be hard for Kagabo to place Among on the scene of crime because there is no touchable evidence since he didn’t sign anywhere when he was given the money and the speaker herself was not the one handing him the bribe.

    “I think my young brother was playing politics and he is finished. Now, what we want the investigators to tell us is, who gave him that ‘kanyama’ (bodyguard) who was carrying the bag which contained the money. I established that my young brother was under captive and the Kanyama was the one ordering him to do whatever he did,” Kakooza said.

    NUP’s president Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu alis Bobi Wine praised Kagabo for following his advice and returning the bribe like he advised his legislators unlike his other colleagues who received the bribe but refused to return it.

    He pleaded to IGG and other investigation agencies to investigate the matter with care instead of victimising the legislator.

     

    By Sengooba Alirabaki

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