Friday, 27 July 2012

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Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Kasese District Loacl Government throws a party to the workers after it budget reading

By: Kasese online news team
The management of Kasese District Council yesterday passed a 42 billion budget. The budget reading function which took place at Kasese Catholic Social Hall was attended by a good number of official from the district and the District council. The 42 billion budget has been the first budget of it's kind Said the District speaker Hon. Mubingwa.
This was proceeded by an evening dinner which took place at Rwenzori International Hotel. There were lots of drinks and bites. The chief guest was the Newly appointed RDC Lt. Milton O District officials danced themselves off till Mid-Night. Such gatherings are always healthy in and institutional structure as the District LC V Chairman pointed out.

Race for Kasese MP seat tightens

By: Kasese online news team Campaigns for Kasese woman parliamentary by-election started on monady with the four courting their home areas for votes. Four candidates were nominated for the August 8 by-election ordered by the Court of Appeal on June 4 on grounds of non compliance with the electoral laws by the Electoral Commission. Traversing villages Independent candidate Betty Kayezu, who was rumoured to have pulled out of the race under unknown circumstances, spent her day in Katwe-Kabatoro Town Council in Busongora South, whereas DP’s Rosemary Masika held rallies in Nyakiyumbu and Karambi sub-counties in Bukonzo County West. FDC’s Winfred Kiiza, accompanied by party president Kizza Besigye, campaigned in Kisinga and Kyalhumba sub-counties in Bukonzo County East while her main rival, NRM’s Rehema Muhindo, campaigned in Kitswamba Sub-county and Hima Town Council in Busongora North. Campaigning for Ms Muhindo were Defence Minister Crispus Kiyonga, Busongora South MP Boaz Kafuda, Kasese Municipality MP James Mbahimba and Kasese District chairman Mawa Muhindo. Ms Muhindo, the runner-up for the 2011 elections, pledged to address education quality concerns and improving the maternal health in the district. “I will also make sure the pregnant mothers will never suffer,” Ms Muhindo said. Dr Kiyonga, who is also district NRM chairman, asked voters in Busongora North to vote for Muhindo if they want Rwenzori elevated to a district. The turn up for Ms Muhindo’s rallies in Busongora North, regarded as an FDC stronghold, were low-- prompting party officials to accuse the local organisers for failing to mobilise. Share This Story At Kisinga playground in Bukonzo County East, several MPs took to the platform to campaign for Ms Kiiza arguing that she is missed in Parliament on matters that affect the country. Newly-elected MP for Bushenyi-Ishaka Municipality Oddo Tayebwa, Rukungiri Municipality MP Roland Kaginda, Busongora North MP William Nzonghu, Bukonzo East MP Yokasi Bihande and Western Youth MP Gerald Karuhanga campaigned for Ms Kiiza. Ms Kiiza, who has been the opposition chief whip in Parliament, told supporters that the by-election will reveal the truth about who was the rightful winner of the election. She said there are unfinished tasks in Parliament ranging from improving education standards, health, employment creation and marketing --which requires that she is voted back to the House. Dr Besigye asked the people of Kasese to defend their Rwenzururu Kingdom by voting Ms Kiiza who, he says, knows the value of the people. Poverty, eradication pledge He said the Banyarwenzururu have showed that they are able to participate in protecting the country by overwhelmingly contesting the emerging Busongora Kingdom. “I have come here to thank the Banyarwenzururu for showing the country that you are able to defend your Kingdom because some people (Basongora) had invaded your peace but government could not do much to stop them until you pulled down their flag,” Dr Besigye said. At Mushenene Trading Centre in Nyakiyumbu Sub-county, DP’s Masika promised to fight poverty and unemployment if elected into Parliament. Kasese Parliamentary elections Campaign period: The candidates have 15 days to campaign through 28 sub-counties and town councils in the district. Register display: The Electoral Commission is displaying the voter’s register until July 28. LC elections: Local council by-elections will also be held in Lake Katwe, Kisinga, Nyakatonzi and Isango sub-counties on the same day with woman parliamentary poll, expected on August 8. Opposition win: FDC top officials to camp in Kasese District until the vote is concluded. The opposition has won six of seven parliamentary by-elections since the 2011 general elections

AG wants Bukonzo East MP seat declared vacant

By: Kasese online news team
The Attorney General, Peter Nyombi has asked the Constitutional Court to declare the Bukonzo East parliamentary seat vacant. This is in light of the conviction of area MP Yokasi Bihande for offences of embezzlement and uttering of false documents. On April 5 this year, Bihande was convicted by the Anti Corruption Court on his own plea of guilt, after admitting embezzlement of sh20m. He was ordered to refund the money. The AG's stand is contained in a response to a constitutional petition filed by Bihande's political rival, Fred Businge. Bihande's rival wants court to declare that seat automatically vacant after the conviction. The AG's response is contained in an affidavit sworn by state attorney, Kosia Kasibayo. "Owing to my legal training and experience, I know that the second respondent [Bihande][ should vacate his seat as an Honourable Member of Parliament in accordance with the Constitution," Kasibayo asserts. Additionally, the AG agrees with Businge, noting that Bihande's continued occupation of the seat is a violation of Articles 80(2)(f) and 83(1)(b) of the Constitution. The cited Articles highlight the qualification and disqualification of MPs, plus the tenure of MPs. Legal clashes On July 19, when the case came up for conference scheduling in court presided by the registrar, Erias Kisawuzi, Bihande's lawyer, David Mpanga pleaded that the AG be turned into a petitioner rather than a defendant. By Kasese online news team But Kisawuzi ordered him to file an application to that effect. In his petition, Businge who dragged both Bihande and the AG to the court wants a declaration to the effect that from April 3 when Bihande was convicted, he forfeited the benefits enjoyed by an MP. Businge notes that for such offenses linked to dishonesty and moral turpitude, Bihandeis not entitled to receive any salary, allowances and any other emoluments and privileges. He is demanding that Bihande refunds the monies to the consolidated fund. Businge wants court to temporarily block payments made to Bihande until the case is disposed. Adamant Bihande But Bihande has fought back, saying he was duly elected and that no circumstances have arisen to render his continued occupancy unconstitutional. He is citing a conspiracy game by the ruling NRM party. "This petition is not brought out of concern for public accountability but rather, is part of a deliberate process by the National Resistance Movement of witch hunting the second respondent [Bihande] because he is a member of the opposition," Bihande states in his affidavit. He notes that since he was convicted when already an MP, the scenarios in the cited Constitution Articles are not applicable in his case. Ends check out on the deatils link on what people had to say

Kasese Kasindi traders go on strike

Kasese traders in Kasindi Market this morning went on strike protesting the increase in rent fees from Shs 50,000 to Shs80,000. They've closed their shops in a sit down strike

Four for Kasese woman slot

By: Kasese online news team
Four candidates were nominated last week to contest for the Kasese district woman parliamentary seat following a two-day exercise that concluded on Friday. The four candidates are: Winfred Kiiza (FDC); Rehema Muhindo (NRM); Rosemary Masika (DP) and Kayezu Betty Kagooro (Independent). Speaking to The Observer shortly after her nomination, Muhindo said she was sure of victory on August 8. “My votes were rigged last year but I think this is not going to happen again,” Muhindo said. The DP camp is also ready to safeguard their votes. Iman Makumbi, the DP vice president for Western Uganda, who accompanied Masika to the nominations, said they would deploy a team of youth from other districts to guard their votes. “We are going to hire a team of youth to guard our votes because we are aware that vote rigging will be part of the exercise and this time we are ready,” Makumbi said. Muhindo was accompanied to the nomination by the minster for Defence Chrispus Kiyonga, Katerera county MP, Hatwibu Katoto and the Fort Portal Municipality MP, Alex Ruhunda. Meanwhile, Police in Kasese district have arrested two poling officials whom they found deleting names from the voters’ register. Grace Akullo, the district police officer (electoral crimes), told journalists that the two, Godwin Muhindo and Monday Baluku, were arrested from Bwera sub-county from where they were deleting people’s names from the register. “We got information that the two spy on people and when they identify that you are from the opposition, they delete your name from the register, claiming that you are dead,” Akullo said. The campaigns officially began on Sunday 22 July 2012.

Thursday, 19 July 2012

GOOD HOPE FOUNDATION FOR RURAL DEVELOPMENT (GHFRD) ESTABLISHES A SERVICE DELIVERY MONITORING ICON.

The Week of 25th-29th.June.2012 will be a memorable one for the citizens of Bundibugyo, Ntoroko, Kabarole and Kasese Districts. A team of two hundred eighty six (286) monitors were trained on skills of monitoring service delivery; collecting evidence based information, packaging it and using it to cause action for improved service delivery, and the trainings were held at World harvest mission in Nyahuka T.council of Bundibugyo District, Kisomoro sub county community hall in Kabarole district, Karugutu p/school in Ntoroko district and YMCA hall in Rugendabara, Kasese district. These monitors were selected from twenty six (26) sub counties of; Nduguto, Bubandi,Ngamba,Bukonzo and Bubukwanga in Bundibugyo, and Karugutu,kanara,Rwebisengo,Kibuuku T.council,Kanara T.council and Rwebisengo T.council in Ntoroko, and Kisomoro, Kabonero, Buhesi, Rwimi, Katebwa and Rubona T.council in Kabarole, and Hiima T.council, Karusandara, Kitswamba, Kyabarungira, Buhuhira, Bwesumbu, Bugoye, Maliba and Rukoki sub county in Kasese district
The training is under the project; Enhancing civic competence for social accountability implemented in a consortium by Rwenzori consortium for civic competence(RWECO) of which Good Hope Foundation for Rural Development is a member taking up the above sub counties. The actions in this project are being funded by Hivos till the end of 2013
The monitoring exercise under this project targets three service delivery sectors of; Naads, Education and Health. Tools with detailed questions aimed at sourcing for information have been developed, monitors trained on how to use them and distributed to each monitor for all the above sectors. They were also trained on the use of Huduma; an e-platform through our e-societies at the district headquarters that is used by RWECO to source and disseminate information. The information sourced will be used to cause actions addressing service delivery issues that will finally lead to reduced corruption and improved service delivery in the above districts

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

The Rwenzori Region receives funding from the World Wide Fund (WWF)

By: Kasese Online news team
World Wide Fund for nature (WWF) a non-governmental organization has today donated seven motorcycles to the districts of Kasese, Ntoroko and Bundibugyo to strengthen the management of water in the Semuliki Catchment area. Each the three districts also received a laptop computer and a digital camera as part of the equipment procured for the supervision work and storing data concerning the conservation of water resources. Kasese and Bundibugyo districts received two motorcycles each where as Ntoroko received three because of the poor transport network in the area. The project Manager of the Semuliki River Catchment and Management Program Mr. Ivan Ebong said the motorcycles, laptop computers and cameras are worth eighty million shillings as funded by the Norwegian Development Corporation. Ebong said the districts’ environment offices will use the motorcycles to supervise and strengthen the work of the twenty six grass root water user committees that have been formed in the region under the influence of WWF. The three districts also signed a memorandum of understanding with WWF regarding the usage of the assets to conserve the water sources. Assistant Chief Administrative Officer Wilson Asaba signed on behalf of Kasese district where as Thomas Otim signed on behalf of WWF. The representative of the Country Manager WWF Thomas Otim urged the befitting districts to use the equipment for the purpose because the level of pollution in the Mubuku-Nyamwamba and Lamya-Semuliki sub-catchment areas is high. Otim said that the human activities like cultivation on the river banks for survival has endangered ecosystem. The Vice Chairman LC 5 Kasese Tadeo Muhindo Matwetse commended WWF for the environmental conservation intervention in the region, promising that the motorcycles will cause a good impact. Matwetse urged all the stakeholders to come out and save rivers like Mubuku, Nyamwamba and Semuliki because they may soon dry up due to human activities.

Political highlights from Kasese

By: Kasese online news team
Everything is set for nominations for both district women parliamentary and local council seats by-elections aspirants that kicks of tomorrow. The Kasese district Registrar Kanzira Vally Tumwesigye told journalists that the Thursday and Friday exercise will take place at the electoral commission offices in Kasese town starting at 9.00am to 5.00pm each day.
Confirmation from the district registrar indicates four people expected to be presented for nominations to run for the seat of Woman Member of Parliament for Kasese that fell vacant after court of appeal ordered fresh elections.
Nominations The aspirants are FDC’s Winfred Kiiza, NRM’s Rehema Muhindo, DP’s Rosemary Masika and Betty Kayesu running as Independent. Winfred Kiiza and Betty Kayesu will be nominated on Thursday at 10:00 and 12:00pm respective where as Rosemary Masika and Rehema Muhindo areb to be nominated on Friday at 9:00 and 11: am respectively.
Also to be nominated are candidates for the LC 3 seat for Lake-Katwe and Nyakatonzi sub-counties. Also different categories of councilors from Isango sub-county, Kisinga Town board and newly created Nyakatonzi sub-county will be nominated. The confirmed list from the Registrar’s office indicates Swizin Bukenya of NRM as the only contender for the Nyakatonzi LC 3 seat. Selestine Siwako (NRM), Cyprus Baluku (FDC), Emmanuel Kyalimba and Vincent Odoru both independent are set for nominations to vie for the Lake Katwe sub-county LC 3 seat that also fell vacant following a court order in April last year on grounds of election malpractices in the 2011 polls.
Mr. Tumwesigye, the district registrar has asked every aspiring candidate turning up for nominations to come with only two vehicles possessing a police sticker to avoid abstraction of the exercise. FDC president Dr. Kizza Besigye is arriving in Kasese to accompany Winfred Kiiza for nominations and later on at a public rally at Nyakasanga stadium tomorrow.

Monday, 16 July 2012

About the Bakonjo and Bamba

By: Kasese Online news team
In the early 20th century, the Bakonjo and Bamba tribes were integrated into the Tooro Kingdom as a political manoeuvre by the British colonialists: the neighbouring Bunyoro monarchy was anti-colonialist and rose up in arms in what was known as the Nyangire rebellion.
The British wished to strengthen the pro-British Tooro Kingdom then. The Bakonjo and Bamba initially accepted being arbitrarily made subjects of the Tooro monarch but asked the Uganda Protectorate to provide them with their own district in the 1950s, separate from Tooro District. They successfully seceded from Tooro Kingdom on June 30, 1962. After a long struggle that was affected by different mind sets, including the pro-Obusinga and anti-Obusinga, government of President Museveni finally recognised the Rwenzururu Kingdom on October 19, 2009. The Rwenzururu Kingdom claims to be stretching to the Eastern DR Congo with a big delegation always crossing borders for the cultural functions every year.

The Bakonjo, Bamba clashes: Looking beyond the fights

By Kasese Online News team “The people of Rwenzururu Kingdom should solve their problems amicably because any fighting contributes to insecurity. But such fights cannot be a chance for the enemy to recruit because what motivation do they have for someone who is fighting for cultural benefits?” Brig.Kankiriho asks. Need to reconcile Mr Peter Kamba Mupalya, 87, the only living member of the founding team of the Rwenzururu movement that successfully seceded from Tooro kingdom says: “We started the Rwenzururu Movement to secede from Tooro in 1962 after they denied us the position of premiership to rotate among them and us.” “Last year, I was asked by King Mumbere to work as an ambassador for Rwenzururu to create a new relationship with Tooro and other areas. I am coordinating activities of people within the region to work on repairing relationships,” Mupalya says. He adds: “For example I am an elder in Tooro Kingdom Elders Forum and I love the King of Tooro, we are looking forward to seeing people in the region reconcile because now we want unity and peace.” Mupalya says the establishment of the shrine should not embroil the residents into clashes for they (Bamba) are not forced to pay allegiance to the king of Rwenzururu. He adds: “The king (Mumbere) hails from here, Bwamba County, his father Mukirane was born here. I don’t see the reason why this should raise dust. He is free to do anything on his land. My argument is that let those who support Obusinga do it and those who don’t should not disturb peace.” Share This Story Share He urged the Bamba-Babwisi Elders Development Association members to use the right procedures not through fighting and inciting others. “They should let the king (Mumbere) visit his subjects in Bwamba, even the other Kings (Oyo) can come and visit Bundibugyo,” Mupalya reasons. “This conflict (in Bundibugyo) cannot be won by Bakonzo or Bamba because we are so intermarried, we need Africans not ethnicity,” says. Christopher Kibazanga, adding, “We (sons and daughters from Kasese and Bundibugyo both Bakonzo and Bamba living in Kampala) are sending a team to the area to investigate the conflict and come up with solutions” Although President Museveni is expected to meet the conflicting parties in Rwenzori any time, the conflicts in Bundibugyo and Kasese if mishandled or neglected or handled late, can result in severe clashes. “Government has nurtured ethnicity especially in Kasese District and will pay dearly for it. How can they for a example issue land at 3:1 ratio between minority Basongora and majority Bakonzo respectively?” Kibazanga asks. He adds: “The Bakonzo struggled for over 20 years to recognise their kingdom while the Basongora got it on a silver plate.” However, Mr Jimmy Kagoro Muzoora, the Spokesperson of the Busongora King, thinks the reconciliation move may be dented with flesh moves like taking away their royal drum and flag on Wednesday at Muhokya. “Such dirty moves dent the reconciliatory programme in which the president was asked by Mumbere to meet a delegation of the Bakonzo, Basongora and Bamba,” he says.

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

The Bakonzo Culture activits Abduct the Basongora cultural flag

By Kasese Online news team E-Society Kasese
The streets in Kasese town have this morning been filled with crowd of jubilant Bakonzo as the flag belonging to the Basongora culture was brought to the Obusinga Head offices. The flag was this morning abducted by agroup of the Bakonzo culture activists who went to Muhokya to pick the flag which they got, and moved with it all around town this morning. More details coming later

Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Minister of Defense Dr. Crispus Kiyonga to camp in Kasese for by-election campains

The minister of Defense Dr. Crispus Kiyonga has re-affirmed his plans to camp in Kasese district until the end of the woman parliamentary by-elections as he campaigns for the NRM candidate Rehema Muhindo. Muhindo was a runner up in the 2011 parliamentary elections losing to FDC’s Winfred Kiiza before securing a court of appeal ruling that ordered fresh elections. Addressing mourners at the burials of the late Collin a nephew to Masaka RDC Bamusede Bwambale at Kaserengethe in Mpondwe-Lubiriha Town council, the defense minister said NRM as a party cannot sit down and watch their candidate losing to FDC. Dr. Kiyonga who is the NRM chairman in Kasese District and also Bukonzo West MP said that it is his obligation to campaign for the party candidate basing on the achievements of the regime. Rehema Muhindo faces FDC’s Winfred Kiiza and independent candidate Betty Kayesu in the August 8th by-elections. On the issue of the Busongora Kingdom, Dr. Kiyonga asked the people of Kasese to be calm because the government does not know their King. The archdeacon of Bwera Anglican archdeaconry Rev. Can. Charles Habagatsi called upon the people of Kasese to impress voluntary testing and counseling services in order to know their HIV/ AIDS status. Can. Habagatsi said that the many people especially the youth are succumbing early to the scourge because they refuse to test for their status. The late Collin died at the age of 27

Inspector General of Police Maj.Gen. Kale Kaihura meets with His Majesty Omusinga

By Kasese online news team The Inspector General of Police Maj.Gen. Kale Kaihura yesterday held consultative talks with Omusinga Charles Wesley Mumbere Irema-Ngoma at Buhikira Royal Palace concerning the two conflicts in the Kingdom. In the a closed meeting, the Omusinga and Kaihura discussed at length how to put a peaceful end on the clashes between the Bamba and Bakonzo in Bundibugyo district and the tensions emerging from the Basongora establishing their own Kingdom. Speaking after the closed meeting, Kaihura said that they have all agreed to solve the Bundibugyo problems through dialogue between the elders of the two tribes. Kaihura who spent two days in Bundibugyo district before visiting the Omusinga said the area is now in control of the police but there was need for more talks so that the Bamba and Bakonzo revive their brotherhood co-existence. On the issue of the Basongora, the IGP urged the Rwenzururu Kingdom not to go into any fights because the government is already having modalities of solving the conflict. The Omusinga Charles Wesley Mumbere Irema-Ngoma assured government that the Bakonzo are not intending to go to war with the Basongora unless provoked in any life threatening way. The Omusinga said the Basongora did not respect the rights of the Rwenzururu Kingdom by establishing their own without any consultations. He warned the Basongora leaders not to make any other steps that can provoke the patience of the Banyarwenzururu. The open meeting was attended by the Obusinga Prime Minister Loice Biira Bwambale and the Mayor Kasese Municipality Godfrey Kabyanga.

Rwenzururu Fighting Leaves Three Dead

type here By Simon Turibamwe, Bundibugyo: At least three people have been reported dead following clashes that erupted between the Rwenzururu kingdom supporters and Bamba, Babwisi and Batwa in Bundibugyo district. “Three people, two bakonzo and one Mwamba including a child have been killed in the two-day fight among the tribes that do not believe in the Rwenzururu kingdom that has its palace in Kasese town,” Regina Masika, an eyewitness said. “How can the king come in our territory where he has no land and construct shrines for his kingdom rituals with guards ,spears and drums all over the area? He knows we don’t subscribe to his kingdom why can’t he do his things from Kasese and leave our land?’ Masika wondered. The shrine that brought confusion was established at kirindi trading center in Busaru sub-county. The fighting that attracted high profile government officials saw many properties which could not be readily valued ranging from motorcycles, crops, houses and animals among others, destroyed. Roads to Bundibugyo were on Friday blocked by demonstrators that left police, the army and other security agencies with no option but to tear gas them. Efforts to get the particulars of victims were futile as the Bundibugyo DPC, Denis Namuhooza, was not ready to talk to press about the matter. When contacted on phone about the situation on ground, the DPC said, “Aha first leave me alone,” before he hang up. Government leaders who reached the area to intervene in the situation included ICT minister Ruhakana Rugunda whose meetings were futile before Premier Amama mbabazi and later IGP Lt Gen. Kale Kayihura joined the efforts. According to security sources, Kayihura ordered for reinforcements of 200 police officers from the neighboring districts. Cops in Kasese were on Friday seen preparing to head to Bundibugyo district. In exclusive interview with security personnel on ground who preferred anonymity due to the magnitude of the matter, they faulted the kingdom for encroaching on the land of the people that don’t pay allegiance to the kingdom. “We shall keep guarding the shrine until court pronounces itself on the matter,” the source said.

Monday, 9 July 2012

Basongora-Bakonzo wrangle: A looming tribal bloodbath?

Cultural impasse. Whereas the Basongora say pupils studying from schools in their area should stop singing the Obusinga anthem and traditional dance, the King of Rwenzururu insists he does not recognise Busongora Kingdom and pupils should continue singing and dancing to the royal anthem. When the High Court in Fort Portal on May 7 ruled in favour of 289 farmers who in 2006 sued government for giving their land to pastoralists, it looked like the old conflict between the parties (Bakonzo and Basongora) would die.
The assumption was wrong as no one knew that the next wrangle would be over separation of royal and administrative powers. Court ruled in favour of the cultivators (mainly Bakonzo) and ordered immediate re-possession and occupation of the land. Then it seemed that justice was served and peace would follow when farmers were all smiles. The land then that led to the conflict is located in Bukangara and Rwehingo in Nyakiyumbu Sub-county, Kasese District. The Basongora are among the minority ethnic groups in Kasese mainly pastoralists in the low lands of Busongora North and Busongora South. Clashes erupt When government gave the land to Basongora pastoralists, who had returned from Virunga National Park in Democratic Republic of Congo where they had gone in search of water and pasture, bloody clashes erupted. The Bakonzo cultivators protested government’s move to settle the cattle keepers on the 2,050 acres of land and the deployment of police in the area to block whoever wanted to continue cultivating on the disputed land. The cultivators successfully sued the Attorney General and asked court among others to; order government, its agents and the pastoralists out of their land. Mr Paul Byakatonda, one of the farmers’ leaders, said famine and food scarcity will be no more so long as every farmer repossesses the land they had lost hope in. Share This Story 4Share Following this, the Basongora community quickly held several meetings and rekindled their old demands of their own district and kingdom. They want to secede from Kasese and from Rwenzururu Kingdom, arguing that their interests are not catered for and are politically marginalised. Different cultures The Basongora have gone ahead to crown their own King Rwigi IV Kabumba Rutakirwa Ivan Bwebale amid resistance from different sections in the district. They argue that it is their human right to have a kingdom because they don’t share any cultures with the Bakonzo. “We have totally different cultures with the Bakonzo, so it is our human right to have our own kingdom” said the Busongora king’s spokesperson, Mr Jacob Muzoora, on Wednesday. Two weeks ago, the Basongora called for the rejection of the Rwenzururu Kingdom anthem in schools in their areas where they stay. This was after the Basongora elders complained to their cultural leader that their children were being forced to sing the Rwenzururu Kingdom anthem and to dance Bakonzo traditional dance. Bwebale says it is an abomination to see their children dance the Bakonzo traditional dance and sing their kingdom anthem. “All head teachers in Busongora schools should stand warned that the Basongora have own kingdom meaning that the Rwenzururu culture here is an abuse on us,” Bwebale warned on June 24 at Nyakatonzi Community hall after he announced his cabinet. Bwebale said the Busongora Kingdom has been in existence though not popular as was established in 1886 by Queen Ikamiro Kogyere. Mr Joseph Baluku, an elder in the Rwenzururu Kingdom, said: “I am worried of how two kingdoms will operate in one district. Does it mean that Basongora and Bakonzo will have their own separate schools in order not to honour the anthems of the two institutions?” He added: “I am sensing danger in our district if our leaders don’t decide wisely”. The minority groups say they have been marginalised in the politics and service delivery in Kasese which is led by the majority Bakonzo. Push for Busongora district on the card A petition to the district chairperson by Mr Bisanga says the Basongora, Banyabindi and Bachingwe, the three minority groups have been discriminated against, marginalised and oppressed by the district administration on employment, service delivery, politics and education. The petition calls for the creation of a separate district for entirely the three ethnic groups because the proposed split of Kasese into three administrative units leaves the Basongora, Banyabindi and Bachingwe scattered.

FDC Vows to Defeat NRM in Kasese Polls

The leader of opposition in Parlaiment, Nathan Nandala Mafabi has vowed that Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) will defeat NRM in the Kasese woman MP by-elections. Nandala, told journalists at Grand Holiday Hotel in Mbarara, on Saturday after meeting of Party leaders in Ankole Sub-region to discuss new strategies for development and leadership of the party. He said that FDC party will retain the hotly-contested seat, adding that their candidate, Winfred Kiiza, is strong and focused on causing change and development in Kasese than her opponent from NRM. "I know NRM will mobilize and take all resources including money to Kasese to win the August slated by-elections but they will not manage because FDC is strong. Ugandans have woken up and they know what they want," Mafabi said. Kiiza, who has been the area woman MP for six years, lost her seat in June after court of appeal ruling in favour of NRM's Rehema Muhindo. Muhindo, the NRM candidate in 2011 general elections, petitioned court over election irregularities after losing to Kiiza in February 2011 polls.

Friday, 6 July 2012

Mbabazi attends Rwenzururu cultural celebrations

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Press Release from Prime Minister’s Press Unit Prime Minister Amama Mbabazi on Saturday attended celebrations of the Rwenzururu cultural institution which was marking 50 years of existence, in Bundibugyo Town Council. Mbabazi was representing the President as chief guest at the ceremony. He thanked the people of Bundibugyo for their continued support of NRM. He said the issue of Obusinga (Rwenzururu institution) is a cultural issue to be determined by the people of Rwenzururu. The Constitution that restored the Obusinga allowed all those that wished to enjoy their culture to do so. He said this while addressing a rally of Rwenzuru loyalists to mark the occasion and promised to go back for a discussion over cultural issues. Mbabazi had earlier addressed a meeting of all district leaders at the district headquarters who gave him a memorandum on the issues affecting the district. The meeting was attended by State Minister for Primary Education Kamanda Bataringaya (also Bwamba County MP), Members of Parliament Harriet Ntabazi (area Woman), James Mbahimba (Kasese Municipality) and Joseph Kilegheya Sibalingene (Bughendera County). The District LCV Chairman, Jolly Tibemanya, the Deputy Resident District Commissioner, Wilson Isingoma and district councilors also attended. During the meeting, the leaders raised various issues among them issues of finances to the district. They complained about late releases from government, district budget indicators being below what they requisitioned and the lack of an alternate resource for graduated tax. Mbabazi said graduated tax cannot be reinstated because local authorities have failed to justify it. Additionally, the collection of graduated tax was too primitive and expensive to sustain the tax. He said the current low levels of revenue collection being advanced as a reason for its reinstatement were not convincing. President Yoweri Museveni abolished the tax during the 2005 presidential campaigns, arguing that it was regressive and expensive to collect. The government replaced it with the local service and local hotels taxes. However, some Members of Parliament and several district leaders have advocated for its reinstatement. They argue that its abolition has vastly constrained operations of local governments. They advance the idea of finding alternate sources of revenue such as building markets. Mbabazi said. “The question of low local revenue collection is something we should discuss because it cuts across.” The district Chairman Jolly Tibemanya said Bundibugyo had suffered a budget cut of Shs 2.5b for the 2012/13 financial year. Such gaps, he said, would in the past be bridged by graduated tax collections which funded most districts by up to 75 percent. He highlighted a number of achievements, saying 90 percent of the district budget was funded by the central government. Mbabazi said his office, even as the Leader of Government Business in Parliament, had also received zero releases in the last quarter of the financial year. He said such budget cuts were inevitable because the Ministry of Finance disbursed what it received from revenue collection. “We expected to raise an additional Shs 528b compared to last year’s (2011/12) collections but there were no budget increases. Most money went to minimal increases in salaries and allowances to science teachers,” Mbabazi explained. He said the balance was for development of Karuma hydropower. The Deputy Resident District Commissioner, Wilson Isingoma briefed Mbabazi on the threat of ADF rebels in Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo. He also outlined challenges in the disbursement of loans under the Youth Venture Fund.

The Big Story Border town falls to Ntaganda rebels as DRC troops flee to Uganda

Congolese rebels led by Bosco Ntaganda, a warlord wanted by the International Criminal Court on charges of war crimes, have captured the border town of Bunagana forcing Congolese soldiers to flee into Uganda, reports the BBC. Uganda shares the town with the...