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    OPINION: Uganda For Ugandans, Kenya For Kenyans…



    Is there a problem between Uganda and Kenya as far as political dynamics are concerned? Some politicians in Kenya have been offended because Deputy President, William Ruto, has been coming to Uganda in recent times.

    These are mostly ODM politicians and those who belong to other camps in alignment to the 2022 elections. In their mind, Ruto’s coming to Uganda had to do with the 2022 elections and, therefore, Uganda has something to do with his interests, real or imagined.

    Understandably, the political pulse is beating fast in Nairobi as the power camps set themselves for the big event. That, however, does not mean that nothing else is happening other than electioneering. I have not heard that when Ruto came to Uganda, he came on election related matters. As Deputy President, he must have come here on state matters or private matters which he could as well attend to at any other time or in any other country. Ruto has been a guest in Uganda many times before and it was never an issue. If it is an issue now due to the shift in power dynamics, that is strictly a Kenyan matter.

    Uganda does not interfere in internal matters of other countries, unless expressly prompted formally on matters of regional interest or as part of arrangements involving more parties.

    For President Museveni, he receives guests from all over the world on different missions. Some of his guests are belligerent groups on opposite ends of active conflicts or opposing camps in politics or elections; they reach him on their terms and his place as a statesman, an important Pan-Africanist and a stakeholder in regional affairs. Some are personal friends who check on him like all friends do.

    In all the time Ruto has been coming to Uganda, I have not heard Museveni or any government official or leader in NRM comment about Kenyan politics, or express support or lack of it for any side. For anyone on the Kenyan side to read into the presence of anyone in Uganda and decide that is about 2022 is a bit of a problem as it seeks to cause unnecessary tension between our leaders and our two countries. People should have some courtesy before expressing their views on any issue. Any rushed statements can have irredeemable repercussions, whereas we could be working on matters of mutual benefit as a people of East Africa-and Africa at large.

    Uganda had a general election early this year and, to their credit, the Kenyan establishment did not interfere. It was only Babu Owino, MP of Embakasi East, who got entangled with the candidacy of Bobi Wine and went on to attack President Museveni and NRM. We took that as an individual action which did not represent the collective interest of ODM led by Chief Raila Odinga. We knew that there are forces working through such offshoot groups but we were confident that the final decision lay with the Ugandan people, as indeed they went on to accomplish when they voted NRM against the challenge of other contenders.

    There was also Julius Malema of South Africa; this one also campaigned for Bobi Wine while attacking President Museveni. Malema is an MP and president of Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), having left the ruling African National Congress (ANC).

    Malema’s ideas are controversial. His interest in pushing the opponents of NRM are directly proportional to his hatred for ANC and the ruling establishment in South Africa. The language he was using was quite native and was not in good taste by reasonable standards. His problem, I believe, was because he had seen President Ramaphosa in Uganda-meeting President Museveni or attending to some other business-and decided that he had to extend his opposition and annoyance to anyone who came in contact with him.

    By pushing Bobi Wine, he was inspiring the sort of divisionism and tension that fills South Africa’s politics these days. So, we responded to him and advised him to keep within the limits of building EFF and leave Uganda’s issues to Ugandans. It was also a quick lesson in the tenet of non-interference in the internal political affairs of other countries.

    Museveni is a prominent statesman in Africa today due to his seniority and experience. He is consulted on a wide range of issues even by global powers. Malema is free to meet and consult him; Owino is free to meet and consult him, just as Ruto is free; Raila is free, just like Presidents Kenyatta, Kiir and many others in the region meet with him and discuss different matters. Even Kalonzo Musyoka has met and paid glowing tribute to him. Should all these come under attack each time they associate with someone that their opponents do not like? That kind of politics is unhelpful.

    As East Africans, our common objectives such as the Integration Agenda should bring it together. Elections are vital but an internal matter, nevertheless. Right now nobody knows who will be on which ballot, where and when. Speculative politics is dangerous and should be discouraged. Our sister countries operate democracies that are functional enough to resolve their governance needs in the circumstances. Let us respect each other’s sovereignty, systems and as well look at the big picture!

    Faruk Kirunda is a Presidential Assistant in Charge of Media Management




    Government To Rehabilitate And Revamp Railway Networks To Curb High Prices Of Fuel…



    Government is set to revamp the railway networks across the country to help curb transportation challenges arising from increasing fuel prices.

    The state minister for works and transport, Fred Byamukama confirmed the report following the president’s speech on Friday regarding high fuel prices.

    During the president’s address, he noted Uganda’s real problem currently is fuel and the answer to it is electrical vehicles and the railway.

    Confirming the report, Byamukama said that the government is revamping different railways across the country with a purpose of reducing heavy traffic jam and transport fares.

    “From Kampala to Malaba which is 243km is the only line we have functioning at the moment,” he said.

    Byamukama re-echoed that Museveni reminded the country and gave a directive that he had earlier through the ministry of works and transport embarked on revamping the railway transport in Uganda.

    Byamukama analysed that the one from Malaba to Mukono then to Kampala and the one from Tororo to Gulu is 375 km.

    “Then we have Gulu to Pakwach which is 129km, Kampala to Kasese is 350km and also we have the one from Mukono to Kampala then Kyengera to Portbell which is about 55km.”

    Byamukama also revealed that the ministry is planning to introduce a modern standard gauge railway system in addition to the 1266km metre gauge railway volume with an agenda of improving relationship among the East African member countries.

    “The East African community members agreed, we have seen Kenya and Tanzania doing it and other countries. For us, we are delayed by that connection that Kenya must connect from Naivasha up to Malaba.”


    By Kalamira Hope


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    FDC Boss Narrates How Former Kampala Legislator Nabilah Played 3 Top Politicians In 24 Hours…



    Former Kampala woman MP Nabilah (L) and Kira Municipality MP Semujju Nganda (R)

    Maverick Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) spokesperson and also Kira Municipality Member of Parliament (MP) Ibrahim Ssemujju Nganda has revealed how former Kampala Woman MP Nabilah Naggayi Ssempala played 3 top politicians within a period of 24 hours.

    Ssemujju narrated that Nabilah used her beauty very well to capture the three men’s attention to fulfill her goal of winning the 2016 parliamentary seat.

    “I’m telling you Nabilah is a superwoman, she met president Yoweri Kaguta Museveni early in the morning at State House Entebbe, later in the evening she was with John Patrick Amama Mbabazi, who by then was a political enemy to President Museveni, the next morning she was with Dr. Kizza Besigye who was a political enemy to Museveni and Mbabazi by then,” he said.

    He divulged that when Dr. Besigye appointed him to his select team that had to accompany him to Namboole stadium for his nomination as presidential candidate, Nabilah was not in his plans because he was briefed with evidence that she was with Museveni and Mbabazi.

    He was also told that Nabilah was an operative sent by Museveni’s camp.

    Ssemujju revealed that he was very surprised to meet Nabilah seated close to Dr. Besigye the next day.

    He said that he tried to forcefully evict her from sitting near Besigye but he was advised that he was brewing trouble for himself.

    He insisted that most of the politicians in Uganda are like prostitutes without principles to stand on.

    He added that it is the reason why in 2021, Nabilah was with NUP’s Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu and she was fronted to contest against Lord Mayor Erias Lukwago.

    He narrated that right now, he knows that there are a number of politicians who are fighting tooth and nail to make sure that there is no cooperation between Dr. Besigye and Bobi Wine because they think that that if these two opposition heavyweights cooperate, some MPs will lose their political seats.

    Nabilah was not reached for a comment because she did not pick our phone calls.

    Nabilah recently suprised court when he testified against her husband Isaac Ssempala Ssebagala before the High Court Commercial division over a debt she ate from Prof. Venansius Baryamureeba who wants to take their family house for failing to pay back his money.

    It is alleged Nabilah got the money without the consent of her husband but now wants her husband to pay or surrender the house to Baryamureeba.


    By Sengooba Alirabaki


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    Panic In UNRA As Top Bosses Face Jail Over Shs.100bn Kampala-Entebbe Expressway Fraud…



    Kampala-Entebbe expressway

    The Uganda National Roads Authority (UNRA) bosses may face jail over the Shs.100bn Kampala-Entebbe Expressway fraud.

    This shocking revelation was revealed by controversial lands junior minister Dr. Sam Mayanja during an exclusive interview with theGrapevine.

    Mayanja said that he has received a dossier from a whistleblower narrating how officials from UNRA and those in the Ministry of Lands defrauded government during the construction of the Kampala-Entebbe Expressway.

    “I have already established a select committee to investigate the fraud and I am expecting their report before the end of this year, but I can assure you, people are going to sleep in prison,” Mayanja said.

    He explained that when some officials from UNRA got information that government had entered into a deal with the Chinese government to construct the Kampala-Entebbe Expressway, they immediately connived with Ministry of Lands officials and issued fake land titles so that they can be compensated by government.

    Mayanja said that it is the reason why government spent a lot of money compensating affected persons yet it is public knowledge that much of the land on Kampala-Entebbe Expressway were wetlands, forest reserves and gazetted road reserves.

    He said that the land titles were issued in the wetlands, forests reserves and road reserves all owned by government not private citizens.

    “There was a lot of fraud. How can you compensate a person with a land title in the wetland? Government is going to sell the properties of those UNRA and Ministry of Lands officials who were involved in the scam to recover taxpayers’ money worth Shs.100bn. And if we find out that the properties they own are not worth the money they stole, they will be imprisoned,” Mayanja said.

    He divulged that a similar scheme was used during the construction of the Northern Bypass where UNRA compensated top city tycoons for owning land titles in wetlands and government lost billions of money.

    The celebrated co-founder of the Kampala Associated Advocate(KAA), a renowned city law firm revealed that his boss President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni is already equipped with all the information.

    They have also established that such money is being used by fake city tycoons to illegally evict bibanja owners from their land.

    Mayanja noted that the money which will be recovered by the government will be used to pay the big debt that government secured to construct such big public projects.

    It should be noted that Justice Catherine Bamugemereire and her probe teams both on UNRA and Land, discovered that the mafias hide behind land grabbers in UNRA and in the Ministry of Lands.

    Minister Mayanja revealed that the president is carefully studying Bamugemereire’s recommendations to squeeze mafias in his government.


    By Sengooba Alirabaki


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