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Buganda rejects Kampala takeover

Discussion in 'Ugandan News and Politics' started by ByaseL, Jun 29, 2009.

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    ByaseL JF-Expert Member

    Jun 29, 2009
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    Sheila Naturinda Robert Mwanje

    The ping-pong between the Central government and the cultural Kingdom of Buganda has taken another twist after Mengo, in a 26-page statement, warned the government against a proposal to create a metropolitan authority for the capital city, Kampala.

    A June 26 statement from the office of the Katikkiro [Prime Minister] warned of dire consequences if the government goes ahead with the plan. “Buganda will not just sit and watch as government takes all our land in the pretext of improving management of Kampala city,” the acting Katikkiro, Haji Yusuf Nsubuga, said in it the statement published in Luganda.

    The statement threatened of yet unspecified action if the law is passed. “If the government forces its way into passing the proposal, the Buganda government will also seek assistance and advice over the same from other avenues,” the statement said. The statement was copied to accredited diplomatic missions in Uganda and curiously, the International Criminal Court [which in Uganda has issued summons for rebel leader Joseph Kony of the Lord’s Resistance Army]

    Local Government Minister Adolf Mwesige last week tabled the Kampala Capital City Bill, 2009 that will abolish KCC and introduce another outfit “Kampala Capital City Authority. The takeover of Kampala by the central government was one of the key highlights of the 2005 constitutional amendment process.

    The new arrangement will give the central government a direct role in the running of the city council. Kampala mayor will be elected through electoral colleges contrary to the current adult suffrage system.

    The government will also appoint an administrative head of the city, who would, according to the proposal, be answerable to the President’s office.

    Haji Nsubuga said; “This is intended to slay Buganda’s strength by taking away the kingdom’s ‘heart’ [Kampala]. Even the current size of Kampala was extended by the central government with a similar intention.” He added; “In 1962, Kampala District never existed but it was created recently. The official capital city was separate from the commercial city and Mengo municipality.”

    In a recent interview, Kampala Mayor Nasser Sebaggala criticised the proposed takeover and described the move as a political ploy to grab the city after failing to win its leadership through the adult suffrage system.