Anti-federo politicians feeling the heat

News February 15, 2006
Don’t vote anti-federo politicians, says Mengo

LUKIIKO members and the kingdom elders (Bataka) have asked the Baganda to drop anti-federo politicians in the forthcoming general elections.Busiro County Chief, Mr P.K. Ssebwaana, who is also a member of the Lukiiko, said the Kabaka's subjects should exploit the Febuary 23 elections to vote out politicians who do not favour the interests of the kingdom.

“Don't vote whoever is anti-federo. Look at councillors and MPs keenly and identify those who were bribed,” Ssebwana said during a Lukiiko meeting in Mengo on Tuesday.

“District chairmen and councillors who passed the Regional Tier Bill should also be dropped,”he said.

Supported moveThe proposal to drop anti-federo candidates was supported by a number of Lukiiko members including; Joseph Balikudembe (member), Damiano Lubega (member), Ndugwa Ssemakula (member of Bataka council), P.K. Ssengendo (Busiro county chief), Mudirikati Mukasa (Kyagwe county chief), Stanley Kijjambu (Singo county chief).

The remarks come days after the Lukiiko unanimously rejected the government's decision that a regional tier system be adopted for districts who want to form a regional government instead of adopting federalism.

The over 60 Lukiiko members re-stated Buganda's demand for a full federo system and vowed never to change their stand on any of the five points the kingdom handed over to the Constitutional Review Commission (CRC) chaired by Prof. Frederick Ssempebwa.

According to the regional tier system, the katikkiro has to be elected contrary to Buganda's traditions. The stormy Lukiiko session demanded for a federal system of governance.

The Lukiiko also rejected an elected katikkiro contending that electing a katikkiro goes against the culture and norms of Buganda. “Having looked at what is in the Constitution and what the people of Buganda demanded, the Lukiiko has resolved that Mengo remains the way it is today until any government in power grants us federo,” the kingdom's Attorney General, Mr Godfrey Lule, said.

“Buganda and all its cultures and norms will completely fade away if we accept a regional tier.” The Lukiiko recommended that the regional tier package was dangerous to the kingdom and would lead to its collapse.

The Katikkiro, Mr Dan Muliika, said Buganda's position on federo is clear and has not changed. Buganda wants the central government to grant the kingdom a federal status, return the 9,000 square miles of land which originally belong to the kingdom, Kampala to be considered as part of the kingdom among others.

Last year, the Parliament passed a law allowing the regional tier governance and recognised Kampala as part of Buganda but to be administered by the central government.

Two thirds of all the district councils ratified the law including Wakiso, Masaka, Mukono, among others. Ssebwana encouraged the people of Buganda not to yield to intimidation. The Lukiiko criticised the regional tier system describing it as a changed charter.
Kooki cultural council rejects regional tier
Sadab Kitatta Kaaya.

KOOKI'S cultural council has rejected the proposed regional tier system of governance on grounds that it threatens the survival of the kingdom’s traditional institutions.

During a meeting at Rakai district headquarters on Febuary 11, the cultural council presided over by the Kamuswaga (cultural head), Mr Apollo Ssansa Kabumbuli II, resolved to back Mengo's stand on the issue. “Like the President appoints his own prime minister, the Kabaka should also be left with the liberty to appoint his own katikkiro,” Mr Kitayimbwa Mumiransanafu, a member of the council said.

“If they are talking about accountability, it should be the secretary for finance not the katikkiro to account for their billions,” he added.

Recently, in a resolution read by the kingdom`s Attorney General, Mr Godfrey Lule, after hours of deliberation, the Lukiiko (Buganda Parliament) said the regional tier system of governance was poisonous and was not the federal system cherished by Buganda.

The Constitutional Amendment Act enacted last year, provides for regional governments headed by a directly elected chief executive.In Buganda, it is proposed that the chief executive assumes the title of katikiiro (prime minister), but Buganda leaders are opposed to a directly elected Katikkiro.

This move puts a huge dent on months of negotiations between the Buganda government and the central government. Buganda wanted the central government to grant the kingdom a federal status and return the 9,000 square miles of land which originally belong to the kingdom but is now under the central government.Instead, the new tier arrangement among others dictates that the katikkiro be elected under adult suffrage.

This means the katikkiro can come from any other tribe in Buganda and not appointed by the Kabaka (king). The cultural council came up with a three- page memorandum with demands to be presented to President Yoweri Museveni today when he visits Rakai on his campaign trail.
“Among the issues we want to be addressed is the rehabilitation of the Lumbugu- Lwamaggwa- Lyantonde Road, exttention of a power line to the area as well as safe water,” the memo reads in part.

The memo also calls for the granting of a fully-fledged Federal system of governance to Buganda instead of the government's proposed regional tier.

Kabumbuli warned the cultural leaders against getting involved in partisan politics. He said the cultural institution was negotiating with the Rakai district administration for the return of the kingdom’s property. Last year only three districts; Kiboga, Wakiso, Mukono, returned Buganda's property.
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