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    What Kabaka Federo Comments Say About Mayiga’s Leadership



    By Otim Nape
    Since taking office, Katikkiro Peter Mayiga who many suspect to have a soft spot for Prsident Museveni has carefully avoided vehemently pushing for the Federo message.  His explanation, widely parroted by his adherents, is that there is a lot Buganda can do to demonstrate the Federo benefits even before the much –cherished system of government is granted.

    Even when you closely study his so-called ensonga ssemasonga, you will clearly see that Mayiga is being cautious to avoid confrontation with the M7 central government in the pursuit of Federo. Whether this is cowardice or strategy as Mayiga supporters argue, is debate for another day. In 2016, for the first time, Uganda held general election campaign without Federo being a big campaign
    issue. This was so because Mengo, under Mayiga’s leadership, decided to become vague on the issue. Critics believe this ambivalence by the Mengo leadership was meant to smoothen things M7 as he campaigned for reelection. Depending on who you talk; majority believe that Mengo’s ambivalence didn’t work as M7’s foes like Kizza Besigye were able to grow their vote fraction, for the first time, without having any semblance of an alliance with Mengo. In fact in Besigye’s campaign, the Federo issue didn’t feature that much.  It’s believed he could have scored more if the Mengo Federo grievances played out so openly like in the previous elections. Some consider that by failing to vehemently push the Federo issue once again, Mayiga inadvertently led to the demystification of the Buganda question in Uganda’s general election. We are unsure whether this silence was a deal with M7 but what is certain is the fact that for M7, Mengo’s ambivalence worked because it enabled him face less official hostility in the populous and politically very influential region of Buganda. But City Lord Mayor Erias Lukwago’s resounding victory even after Mayiga had publicly embraced his foe Jennifer Musisi whose candidate was Raga Dee of the NRM, is proof Mengo emerged politically weakened and bruised in the 2016 election season.
    The lost political war with Bobi Wine, and the staying away of militants like Semujju Nganda, Betty Nambooze and others from CBS protesting Mayiga’s pro-central government conditionalities, further manifested a Mengo leadership clearing sinking into oblivion and irrelevancy. And the Kabaka Mutebi, who still speaks to some of the militants Mayiga purged, was increasingly becoming concerned. To Mutebi, whereas you need the money and M7 good will to do your activities uninterrupted, the political crowd is as important because that simply is how to demonstrate your might and clout even when you are legally barred from open political participation as a kingdom. The crowds that come out to meet him when he comes to the Lukiiko or wherever he goes in Buganda is nowadays less enthusiastic than was the case in the pre-Mayiga era. JB Walusimbi, Mayiga’s predecessor, was less charismatic but never suffocated those that sought to use Kabaka’s functions to make or act political statements against the M7 establishment. Mayiga, who as information minister resented Walusimbi’s moderate approach, has excelled in purging anti-M7 crowds at Kabaka’s events in order to give room to richer VIPs from M7 central government. This partly explains why, important as it was, the Friday youth event in Kyaggwe had only one Buganda MP Muyanja Senyonga attending it. In the past you would have all the Ganda MPs and those from other regions coming to symbolize their solidarity with the Kabaka whose Mengo government had clearly distinguished itself as a powerful center of power occasionally checking on M7’s excesses. This began changing when Mayiga became Katikkiro and chose those with money (read Jeniffer Musisi, Edward Sekandi, Judith Nabakooba etc) while sidelining victims (read Erias Lukwago) of injustice which the Mengo he served as information minister always condemned. He told Lukwago
    supporters who fluked his tofali session with Musisi inside city hall and implored him to denounce Lukwago’s mistreatment that “sorry this is time for development, time for work and not politicking.” This hurt Lukwago but he was advised to ignore, keep quiet and avoid open confrontation with Mayiga. Lukwago attempted to join the ‘ttoffaali’ fundraising inside Mayor’s gardens where Mayiga and Musisi were
    presiding over tofali fundraising but was brutally turned away by pro-Musisi police and Mayiga said nothing. Things like those gradually alienated Mengo from would-be popular Baganda politicians that happen to be anti-M7. Extremists like Betty Nambooze started hitting him openly disputing his leadership on face book after Mayiga insisted on censoring their shows on CBS. Semujju Nganda is said to have told him off openly in a meeting to which Muwanga Kivumbi, Nganda, Lukwago and others were invited and urged to reduce their hostility to M7 in return for their continued appearance on CBS. Nganda said he couldn’t and it was okay not being hosted on CBS. And recently when Muzaata, Gashumba and Tamale Mirundi ganged up on Mengo and used the Kyapa mu Ngalo to demonize the kingdom, Mayiga was subdued and all of a sudden realized he needed the endorsement of these very popular Ganda politicians to effectively counter the Mirundi trio. Talk shows were specially organized for the likes of Lukwago, Nambooze, Medard Segona and others to appear on CBS to counter the Mirundi trio and lands minister Betty Amongi who was determined to use her powers to stop the Kyapa campaign. Palace sources say Mutebi then realized it was a mistake for the Mayiga administration to sideline these popular young politicians in order to reciprocate the good will of M7 manifested in the return of numerous Buganda properties immediately after Mayiga became Katikkiro.

    Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi posses for a photo with some youth and leaders in Kyaggwe

    Since Mayiga became Katikkiro, a new narrative emerged at Mengo and it goes as follows; Buganda has fought M7 too long and in the process lost chance to partner with him to fight household poverty while
    creating wealth. At a personal level, Mayiga admires the Aga Khan model whereby a powerful institution, with a lot of history and popular good will behind it, is able to do charity-oriented development programs without having express political power. This was the motivation for his Tofali campaign which the M7 central government enabled by providing police VIP security and by refraining from taxing the collected revenues. Close to 15bn was collected in one year and some believe this is the reason Mayiga’s hands were tired when it came to renewing Federo demands in 2016. It took eloquent criticism by Tamale Mirundi, Nuhu Muzaata and Frank Gashumba (who detention ironically excited Katikkiro) for the Kabaka to feel some shame and
    order Mayiga to stop the very exploitative tofali tours. During Mayiga’s reign, radicals that were using their Mengo offices to openly castigate M7 while demanding for Federo have all been purged e.g. Nakirembeka Waliggo, Sevume Musoke, Dr. Jack Luyombya, Gideon Kisitu and others. The purging has happened in the Lukiiko and Clan heads council. Even those active federalists still in Cabinet like Apollo Makubuya and Daudi Mpanga (whose Brother Peter is PPS and writes Kabaka speeches) are ever sidelined by Mayiga’s draconian approach to leadership at Mengo. Sources say that, excited about this effective purge, M7 at some point considered zeroing on Mayiga to be his successor. He courted the Catholic clerics to buy into this promise
    but many of them became cautious the moment Cardinal Wamala reminded them of a similar promise M7 made to Bukenya in early 2000s that never materialized. During Mayiga’s tenure, M7 has reaped the Mengo
    political dividend than he ever imagined. His expectations have clearly been exceeded.  Reliable sources show that, there is a big powerful man in Bulange in Mayiga era cabinet who specializes in sweet-talking young opposition politicians to either openly defect to M7’s NRM or at least unofficially work with it while remaining in
    their parties. Reliable sources show that the Prof Bukenya defection from TDA back to M7 in the heat of the 2016 campaigns, wasn’t only welcomed but was actually mediated or brokered by someone very powerful in Mayiga’s cabinet. Bukenya was told it was counterproductive to resist M7 who was clearly going to win after TDA Principals Besigye and Mbabazi failed to agree on one candidate. Poor Bukenya was left at cross roads after M7 used his defection to re-energize his campaign while demoralizing opposition supporters. Yet
    all that was promised to him (including cabinet re-appointment and support to keep his Busiro North MP Seat) were never delivered upon by M7. Reliable palace sources say for sometime the Kabaka has been
    uncomfortable seeing the Mayiga leadership at Mengo failing to seize the opportunity availed by the ongoing Togikwatako debate to renew Federo demands. The official response from Mayiga’s Bulange-based
    supporters is that deputy Katikkiro Apollo Makubuya is charged with spearheading Federo and he is the one failing Buganda and not Mayiga.
    Yet in actual sense there isn’t much Makubuya can do as long as Mayiga, who remains the very powerful centralist overall Mengo boss, isn’t in favor of renewed Federo demands as that would politically
    complicate things and offset M7. Hence reliable sources say that Kabaka’s decision to use the Mukono Kyaggwe youth event to renew the Federo demands himself is in a way a vote of no confidence in
    Katikkiro Mayiga’s leadership. Muyanja Senyonga, in his capacity as Buganda Caucus chairman, tried to imitate Raphael Magyezi by having a private members bill on Federo but gave up after the Mayiga-led Mengo developed a lukewarm attitude towards his plan. In fact even CBS wasn’t permitted to give prominence to the Muyanja plan in its news bulletins. In doing this publicly, Mutebi is sending out signals that  “whereas I have a disinterested leadership at Mengo, I haven’t denounced my desire to have my kingdom operate under the Federo system of government.” Mutebi will clearly have to do much more, including repeating this call at future public events, because it’s unlikely that CBS which Mayiga firmly controls will allow politicians appearing on it to ride on Mutebi’s speech to renew Federo demands. Mind you since the 2009 closure, the CBS radio operates without a license (but on M7’s good will) and Mayiga rightly fears that, once provoked, M7 can just ring UCC boss Godfrey Mutabazi to do the needful. In the meantime we await to see if Senyonga will act on the clear demand the Buganda youth leaders, publicly backed by the Kabaka, made to him during the Friday youth event in Kyaggwe/Mukono and renew his proposed private members bill calling for Federo


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    Tabliq Muslim Community Petition Gen. Saleh Over Mufti Mubajje’s Closure Of William Street Mosque …



    William Street Mosque

    The Muslim Tabliq sect have petitioned President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni’s young brother Gen. Salim Saleh over Mufti Sheikh Shaban Ramathan Mubajje’s closure of William Street Mosque in Kampala.

    Led by sheikh Fahad Kalungi, the tabliq community accuses Sheikh Mubajje of using state organs like police and army to threaten them and stop them from accessing the mosque for over 3 years.

    Sheikh Kalungi confirmed to theGrapevine that they met Gen. Saleh who promised to intervene in their matter.

    Saleh also promised that the policemen who were deployed at the mosque will be removed.

    Sheikh Yunus Muhammad Kamoga, the leader of the Tabliq community in Uganda told theGrapevine that the mosque was closed when he was in prison battling terrorism and murder charges which were dismissed by the Court of Appeal.

    He said that when he was released, he tried to talk to Sheikh Mubajje to get an explanation from him on why the mosque was closed and how it could be opened.

    The mosque leadership now is currently under the leadership of Mufti Mubajje and sources allege that he is the one collecting money from shops renting on the mosque land.

    In 2016, President Museveni rescued William Street Mosque land title from city tycoon Drake Lubega who had bought it from Mubajje’s leadership by compensating him with a lot of money.

    The Tabliq community protested the transaction and denied tycoon Lubega possession of the mosque claiming that the transaction was illegally executed.

    Efforts to talk to Sheikh Mubajje were futile because he was not picking our phone calls.


    By Sengooba Alirabaki


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    NUP Regrets Submitting Candidate For Busongora South By-election; Dissatisfied With Results…



    NRM's Thembo Gideon Mujungu the winner of Busongora South Constituency by-election

    National Unity Platform (NUP) has regretted submitting a candidate for the Busongora South Constituency by-election following allegations of high level of vote rigging in Kasese district.

    According to NUP General Secretary Lewis Rubongoya, everywhere they went, the people of Kasese told them that they had never seen what happened yesterday during the by-election.

    Busongora South by-election took place yesterday in Kasese and NRM’s Thembo Gideon Mujungu, was the winner with 12088 votes, Mulindwa David (Independent) garnered 2093 votes, National Unity Platform’s (NUP) Mbaju Jackson garnered 6866 votes, Forum for Democratic Change (FDC)’s Kighem Alozious garnered 5564 votes, Izagiira Doreen (Independent) garnered 32 votes and Democratic Party (DP)’s Businge Benadet garnered 84 votes.

    Following the release of the results, Rubongoya revealed that each of the ten sub-counties was under the command of a Resident District Commissioner (RDC) and District Police Chief (DPC).

    “The role of the RDC was to rig, and the role of the DPC was to arrest anyone who dared complain about the rigging,” he said.

    He added, “After the blatant thuggery in Soroti, we even wondered whether it made sense to participate in Kasese and other local government by-elections. However, we had already identified and declared candidates. It became difficult to convince them this is how their elections would go.”

    Rubongoya divulged that during the by-election, military took positions around polling stations and their role was not only to intimidate but to also directly participate in multiple voting and ballot stuffing.

    “We found out that the register had been tampered with, to include so many people who do not ordinarily vote from the area.”

    Rubongoya contended that the by-elections have been costly in terms of time, resources, but most importantly some of the lives they have lost and those who have sustained injuries.

    He propounded, “However, I am glad that all parts of the country have been able to clearly see the reality in our country during these by-elections.

    “It started in Buganda (Kayunga), then North (Omoro), then East (Soroti) and now the West (Kasese). Pallisa and Kisoro weren’t any better. When the people of Uganda resort to other means to reclaim their democratic rights, no one will be in doubt about the justification.”


    By Kalamira Hope


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    City Lawyer Ask Court To Halt Shs195m Criminal Trial Against Him Citing Malice…



    City Lawyer Felix Nteza

    Celebrated City Lawyer Felix Kintu Nteza has asked Buganda Road Chief Magistrate’s Court to put on hold a Shs.195m criminal trial against him citing malice.

    In his application to stay the proceedings, Nteza claims that he was neither the seller nor did he receive any money from the complainant, in the 2013 land transaction, which resulted in fraud charges against him.

    He says he only signed as a witness.

    He asserts that after the sale transaction in 2013, disputes arose between the purchaser Interlink Educational Services Limited and the seller Eva Nannozi and her 12 siblings leading to filing of a case in the High Court, Land Division.

    Interlink Educational Services Limited decided to seek for a refund of Shs.195m and  the case is yet to be concluded.

    According to the application, eight years after the purchase transaction, the complainant demanded that Nteza pays back the said money and then pursue his clients for a refund.

    Nteza maintains that, “Whatever I did in regard to the transaction was done in my capacity as an advocate acting for a known and disclosed client. I therefore rejected demands that I refund the money.”

    He maintains the charges against him are meant to embarrass and exert pressure on him with a view of influencing the civil case already filed in regard to same matter which constitutes an abuse of the due process of the law because the facts therein are similar to those of an already pending case before the Land Division since 2014.

    Court documents show that Nteza of Kintu Nteza and Company Advocates is charged with obtaining money by false pretense from Interlink Education Services Limited.

    Nteza contends that the issue of liability and or refund of Shs195m for which he is charged of having obtained by false pretense from Interlink Educational Services is in advanced stages of hearing and final determination.

    If the criminal case before the magistrates’ court is halted, Nteza states that the case in the High Court shall conclusively determine the issue on who obtained the money and who should refund the Shs.195m .

    Through his lawyers, Nteza contends that the criminal charges are based on facts that are similar to a civil case filed in 2014 which is still pending final determination before the Land Division, for which he is a party.

    Court documents show that in August 2013, Interlink Educational Services Limited purchased land from family members at Gimbo in Wakiso District at Shs195m and Nteza was a witness.

    In a sworn statement, Mr. Nteza states that he signed as a witness in the sale agreement for the land and that he offered professional services to the sellers in his capacity as a lawyer.

    However, in a separate interview, Nteza said that the cases against him are backed by a land broker who is fighting him for representing people in land fraud cases.


    By Sengooba Alirabaki


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