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    Why I Camped In Masaka: Nobody Will Take Power By Stabbing Innocent Ugandans…

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    Last week, I was in the Masaka area to oversee and contribute effort to modalities of government to stamp out the criminal acts of evil-hearted individuals who are sponsored by the enemies of peace and order. Their actions are aimed at blocking the way to securing our future which the NRM Government pledges and even spelled out in the Manifesto.

    Tragically, we lost many people to the assailants who work at night like “night dancers”. This shows that they are elements of darkness and the underworld. I commiserate with those who have lost their loved ones in the senseless killings, and pray that the souls of the departed rest in eternal peace!

    When I tweeted that I would be in the area to “oversee” efforts, I got sharp reactions from those who follow me. They were asking “What are you going to do there? Are you a soldier or policewoman? Leave security personnel to do their work” Others suggested that a minister is office-bound and should have nothing to do with being “at the scene of crime”. That as a civilian, I had no cause being on the ground, while others claimed that I was politicising the matter.

    Well…that is public feedback and I thank Ugandans for raising their concerns. Similar ideas exist in the minds of many people offline as well.
    My operational style is more field-oriented. I am a mobiliser by calling and I don’t do this only during political campaigns. I promise not to abdicate any duty for the comfort of the Kampala office.

    When assuming my duties, I promised to offer people-centered service, and that’s what I am fulfilling. In line with the criminality in Buddu, I urge RDCs to be in touch with the people so as to make them partners in development and in administration and, indeed, in fighting criminality and insecurity. They shouldn’t just sit at the district headquarters waiting for reports. Real work is in the field.
    I went to Masaka because, as Minister for the Presidency, I supervise Resident District Commissioners (RDCs) and Resident City Commissioners (RCCs). RDCs/RCCs are the heads of District Security Committees. Any matter of a security nature happening within a district is the responsibility of the presiding RDC to supervise and manage, and RDCs have done quite well in many places. Under extraordinary circumstances as in Masaka, as minister I have to put in extra effort to see that the situation returns to normal very fast. I had to be on the ground to build the capacity of the security committee(s) and liaise with security commanders and officers pursuing the assailants. I was also lending confidence to the populace that as a government we are with them and want to see them safe and rid of the bad elements.
    The NRM Government has always advised parents to discourage their children from associating with unprincipled characters and political actors whose objective is to fulfill the agenda of our foreign enemies. Security has been picking intelligence and much of these evil plans are thankfully being dismantled.

    The strategy of violent murders of our people using guns has progressively reduced, thanks to the approach of using forensic techniques where murderers can be easily identified on the basis of fingerprints and gun details. This may be the reason why the criminals have resorted to stabbing knives and pangas. However, the NRM government under the leadership of General Yoweri Kaguta Museveni will not be defeated using this rudimentary strategy.

    I need to remind all of us that in the Uganda of today you cannot gain power by stabbing to death innocent civilians. One has to follow all the democratic steps including convincing the masses of your good ideas and selling your manifesto. They are targeting innocent Ugandans for rejecting their schemes in order to force them to betray NRM.

    The current situation in Greater Masaka may not end in Masaka. The actors are thinking beyond Masaka. Therefore, I challenge all our leaders; be they religious or cultural, to stand against these threats and vigorously mobilize the people to defend themselves.

    You may think that the evil plan is only targeting the President yet those being killed are your very sisters and brothers.

    Local residents are the nucleus of a strong security system. They should, by no chance, cooperate with the bad elements. You should shun anybody who tries to lure you in joining their bloody campaigns and report them to the authorities! Politicians should forget their differences and work with security agencies to bring the situation under control.

    We serve living people, not the dead. It is also upon us to inculcate a message of peaceful co-existence so as to safeguard our much cherished security record, which some actors are bent on overturning.
    I have been interacting with leaders across the divide and the ideas raised will be applied not only in Masaka but across the board since we don’t want a recurrence of these incidents in other districts. I thank those leaders for agreeing to work with us.

    Within the community, we should plug shortcomings that may give the thugs an upper hand such as intelligence gaps in our security circles especially at the grassroots, the ‘I don’t care’ attitude of our leaders, lazy security personnel who choose to sleep on the job, local Councils that are not vigilant and bad politics influenced and financed by external forces. Other strategies are classified and have been communicated to the relevant authorities.

    Masaka is the same area where the Kiddawalime group, which the president usually refers to, operated. They were defeated. For the ones causing problems now, I can assure Ugandans that NRM will wipe them out without much trouble and they must pay for their sins.
    The author is the Minister for the Presidency

    By Milly B. Babalanda
    the writer is Minister in charge of the Presidency

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    CRIME

    Former Minister Mbayo Survives Arrest, Sneaks Into CID, Grilled Over Nepotism And Corruption…

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    Minister Esther Mbayo

    Former Minister for Presidency Esther Mbayo has survived arrest after secretly presenting herself to Kibuli based police’s Criminal Investigation Department (CID) to answer charges related to corruption and nepotism.

    Last month, police threatened to arrest the Luuka district woman Member of Parliament for refusing to respect the criminal summons issued against her through the office of the Speaker of Parliament Jacob Oulanyah.

    Mbayo pleaded with the speaker for assistance claiming that the police detectives are being used by her political opponents to humiliate her and brand her a criminal.

    However, the speaker advised her to go to CID and record a statement since police have followed the necessary requirements to summon her as an MP.

    On Monday last week, Mbayo sneaked into CID together with her lawyers and she was grilled by detectives led by Julius Twinomujuni.

    Sources at the CID disclosed that Mbayo was grilled on allegations of influencing the Uganda Printing and Publishing Corporation(UPPC) board to approve her sister Christine Mayengo as the Finance and Accounting manager yet she lacked the required qualifications.

    It is alleged that Mbayo used her influence as the former minister to put pressure on the chairperson Finance, Investment and marketing committee Dr. Patrick Ibembe and Managing Director Tom Wasswa to omit the capable  candidates for the job as advertised in mainstream media in favor of her sister.

    It is further alleged that Dr. Ibembe disclosed that they did not have to engage any external consultant for the said recruitment.

    Sources revealed that Mbayo was told that her sister emerged second in the interview but she was declared the best candidate.

    Sources state that as a token of appreciation to these officials, Mbayo increased their retainer fees from Shs2,500,000 to Shs3,500,000 and Shs2,000,000 to Shs3000,000 to Board chairperson and other members respectively.

    Mbayo was also grilled on allegations that she benefited from the Shs9bn cash which was paid to UPPC by the Electoral Commission to gazette the elected political leaders and polling stations in the recently concluded 2021 general elections.

    Investigators allege that Mbayo directed UPPC management to share the Shs9bn and she was given her share which was used in her 2021 political campaigns in Luuka district.

    Sources revealed that the former minister denied all the allegations and she was released on a police bond.

    The current minister for presidency Milly Babalanda suspended the UPPC board and the management on allegations of corruption, abuse of office and embezzlement.

    Police discover Shs600m in the course of investigation and it alleges that this was part of the Shs9bn paid by the Electoral Commission.

    The police are still investigating the matter.

     

    By Sengooba Alirabaki

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    NATIONAL

    M7 Summons KCCA Ministers, ED Kisaka Over Invisible Hands Fueling City Market Wrangles…

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    Minister Hajjat Minsa Kabanda (L) and Suzan Kushaba (R)

    President Yoweri Museveni has summoned Kampala Metropolitan Minister Hajjat Minsa Kabanda and Dr. Dorothy Kisaka, the Executive Director Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) over allegations that invisible hands are fueling city market wrangles.

    In a chat with the Grapevine, Kabanda confirmed the meeting adding that it is going to take place next week at State House Entebbe to resolve the ongoing leadership fights in Kampala markets especially St. Balikuddembe commonly known as Owino market, Nakasero market, Wandegeya market and Bugolobi market.

    “It’s true the president summoned us to guide on his directive given on the leadership of the city market and I am going with members on the technical wing. He wants to know why his directives are not being implemented and also guide us on how to implement them,” Kabanda said.

    Museveni’s decision to summon KCCA bosses comes after getting information that there are ongoing fights between KCCA and the interim market leadership who refused to vacate offices to allow the election of new leadership to run the market.

    Sources revealed that during the Monday cabinet meeting, minister Kabanda reported Suzan Kushaba, the interim Owino market boss to the President for refusing to leave office and insulting her and Kampala City Resident Commissioner (RCC) Hawa Namugenyi Ndege.

    Sources revealed that Kabanda decided to run to Museveni after meeting security bosses in Kampala City who warned her to go slow on Kushaba because she is working for some big government official.

    “Security cannot remove Kushaba from the office, the lady is protected by SFC and police fear her,” a source at the KCCA revealed.

    He further revealed that when RCC Ndege evicted Kushaba from office last week, she contacted her bosses who allegedly intensified her security and directed her to go back to her office.

    A new energized and fully armed Kushaba went back to office with swag and insisted that she will not leave office on orders of the Minister.

    She further claimed that she had information that the minister wants to sell the market and also return the bad leaders who were fired by the president for mistreating market vendors.

    Yesterday, Minister Kabanda held a meeting with security heads in Kampala to see how to handle Kushaba but it didn’t resolve anything.

    Another source disclosed that the minister is bitter with Kushaba for branding her a fraudster who is behind the selling of public land and city markets like park yard which she sold to controversial city tycoon Hamis Kiggundu.

    However, the minister insisted that her directive on city markets still stands and Kushaba should leave office for new leadership.

     

    By Sengooba Alirabaki

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    NATIONAL

    CRIME IS A CRIME: Stealing From An Employer, Whether Government Or Private, Will Send You To Jail – M7 Directs Arrest Of Top Ministers, Permanent Secretaries, Security Chiefs, RDCs Over Corruption….

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    President Yoweri Museveni

    President Tibuhaburwa Museveni has directed the arrest of top ministers, permanent secretaries, security chiefs and Resident District Commissioners (RDC) over corruption and neglect of duty.

    In a letter dated 22nd August 2021 to the Minister of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries Frank Tumwebaze, copied to the Vice President, Prime Minister, Attorney General and other top ministers, the president gave three courses of action against the suspected corrupt government officials.

    The president was responding to Minister Tumwebaze’s letter dated 11th August 2021 where he accused top government officials of frustrating government service delivery in local government through corruption and lack of patriotism.

    Tumwebaze reported that these actions are putting NRM in bad light. However, in his response, the president insisted that the problem starts from the top, in the ministries and they should be cleaned.

    “The problem is not just in the districts. It starts with ministries in Kampala, the ministers, the permanent secretaries, who do not supervise and monitor programs of the government being implemented by the districts” the president stated.

    He told Tumwebaze that he has information on government officials who are selling vaccines and government properties but he is still collecting evidence against them so that they are arrested and prosecuted.

    In his letter, Museveni gave three courses of actions against the suspects and these include; arresting and prosecuting the suspected officials, sacking and arresting Chief Administrative Officers (CAO), dismissing or prosecuting RDCs, DISOs DPCs, GISOs under whose jurisdiction these crimes are being committed.

    Museveni further directed that even political leaders can be arrested and prosecuted if they collude or aid these crimes.

    “It is, therefore, not a structural problem but neglect of duty by the ministers and the permanent secretaries. Decentralization did not decentralize crime and impunity. Crime is a crime. Stealing from an employer, whether Government or private, will send you to jail for ten years,” Museveni stated.

    Museveni’s letter comes on the heels of a warning from Milly Babalanda, the Minister for Presidency who cautioned RDCs and security bosses in Busoga region to stop involving themselves in illegalities because the president has already directed for the prosecution of all public officials implicated in corruption and evicting tenants from their land.

     

    By Sengooba Alirabaki

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