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Monday, 8 October 2012

Uganda at 50: Despite the prosperity lies from Museveni’s government and the Pentecostal wing, Uganda is slowly but steadily sinking into violence, dictatorship and apathy(abantu bakowu): The country is more divided than ever before and is an accident waiting to happen.


First Read:

Spiritual politics: Apostle Alex Mitala, blasts bishops and other spiritual heads for calling on President Yoweri Museveni to quit power and for the restoration of Presidential term limits.

Kizza Besigye brutally arrested:Released without a charge




Besigye besieged at Kasangati home


Posted  Monday, October 8  2012 at  10:40

Hundreds of riot, regular and anti-terrorism police have on Monday  besieged the Kasangati home of Dr Kizza Besigye, leader of the country’s largest opposition party, who for the second week remains under lock-down with the police invoking a colonial era ‘preventative arrest’ ordinance to keep him indoors.

The heavy deployment follows a late-night clash between security personnel and Dr Besigye over a  tyre spike the FDC president insisted should not be placed in front of his gate.

A spike is a metallic device used to stop movement of wheeled vehicles by puncturing their tyres. Several spikes are placed on the road that leads to Dr Besigye’s Kasangati residence.

A senior FDC official, Maj Rubaramira Ruranga, told Daily Monitor, that the standoff ensued after members of Mr Besigye’s household removed a spike [tyre perforator] that had been positioned at the gate and placed it on the roadside.

However, security personnel insisted that on the spike remaining  infront of the gate.

According to Maj Rubaramira, the standoff ensued at around 11:00am and ended after 1:00 am.

“It was too late and the standoff could not be resolved deep in the night,”Maj Rubaramira added.

Authorities appear to be taking no chances after Dr Besigye twice last week slipped through a lesser cordon and suddenly emerged in town to take part in the ‘Walk to Freedom’ protests, drawing large crowds of supporters.

On both occasions, Dr Besigye was violently arrested, bundled into a police van where he was allegedly roughed up and detained at Kasangati and Kira Division Police posts till late without charge.

A particularly brutal police clampdown on the protests on Thursday last week left scores injured in Kampala’s central business district with some people sustaining gunshot wounds.

Police says it will not accept any public rally organized by any group across the country because they would interrupt the independence celebrations.

An-as-yet unexplained attempt by the police to break into Dr Besigye’s house last night was foiled by the opposition leader and supporters.

A press briefing is underway this morning in Kasangati and is expected to be addressed by Forum for Democratic Change party leaders who have all indicated support for their walk to freedom protests, a new campaign against President Museveni’s government. 

Lukwago under preventive arrest

Publish Date: Oct 08, 2012

By Vision Reporter

Kampala Lord Mayor Erias Lukwago is under preventive arrest at his home in Rubaga a Kampala suburb.

Police Monday morning blocked the Lukwago from leaving his home for work.

Lukwago was last week arrested twice and cautioned for disobeying lawful orders.

This after the Government banned opposition political gatherings as the country celebrates its Golden Jubilee.

Justice and constitutional affairs minister Kahinda Otafiire said: “The Police is stopping their gatherings to save the lives of Ugandans because their gatherings can be infiltrated by terrorists. Do they want us to have a repeat of the over 80 Ugandans who died at Lugogo and Kabalagala when we had terrorist attacks in 2010?” he asked.

Meanwhile, Police are still camped at FDC president Kizza Besigye’s home in Kasangati to prevent him from accessing the city.


President Museveni preaches love at national golden jubilee thanksgiving


Posted  Sunday, October 7  2012 at  21:53

President Yoweri Museveni has challenged Ugandans to put their differences aside and instead love one another as this will benefit everyone.

Speaking at the national golden jubilee thanksgiving ceremony held at Kampala Serena hotel on Sunday, Mr Museveni in a rather very short speech reminded those in attendance that the greatest commandment is “Love the Lord your God with all you heart and also love your neighbors as your love yourself.”

“Today, it is very difficult to love... But make another attempt to love God with all your heart and also love your neighbors as you love yourself. It is very simple but very difficult. I wish you good luck,” Mr Museveni said before leaving to attend yet another official function.

The President’s remarks followed series of religious messages prophesying a better future for Uganda in the next fifty years of independence. Speakers, one after the other called upon people to renew their faith, live peaceful lives and also co-operate with the neighboring states for the realisation of faster growth.

“We are celebrating fifty years of independence and there is even a brighter future ahead of us. In the next fifty years, we will be much better. There should be peace and cooperation with our neighbors. Everyone matters and everyone is important. Let God lead our way to even better things,” Apostle Alex Mitala said.

The national golden jubilee thanksgiving prayers were held under the theme; Uganda God’s Nation. The event was attended by several members of the first family including the President and Hon Janet Kataaha Museveni, parliament of Uganda speaker and deputy speaker, deputy chief justice, ministers, members of parliament, and members of the public.

Release political prisoners - Archbishop Lwanga

Date: Oct 08, 2012

By Juliet Lukwago  

The Archbishop of Kampala diocese Dr. Cyprian Kizito Lwanga has asked government to unconditionally release all political prisoners as the country marks 50 years of independence.

In his homily at Rubaga Cathedral on Sunday Dr. Cyprian Kizito Lwanga said releasing political prisoners would be a big step towards achieving genuine peace, reconciliation and justice.

 He said some of the political prisoners had been arrested and imprisoned unfairly.

 The cleric listed some of the challenges affecting the country such as abuse of power, human rights violation, education system, corruption, ignorance and the failure to distinguish the relationship between culture, religion and politics.

He also called on government to restrict land eviction and speed up the process of resolving land related disputes.

Despite the enactment of the land bill, people are still being evicted from their land, Lwanga said.

He added that even the Catholic church has not been spared from land grabbing by some people who encroached on its land.

 “We live in a country full of contradictions; science and technology are making giant strides in all aspects of life, equipping humanity with all that it takes to make our planet a beautiful place for us all.

"Yet tragic situations of object poverty, disease and hunger are still killing thousands on a daily basis.

“Our destiny is still in our hands. All she is asking for is the space to breathe and thrive," said the Archbishop, before calling on Ugandans to forget the past mistakes

MP Tinkasimire's wife dies

Date: Oct 08, 2012

By Vision Reporter

The wife of Buyaga MP Barnabas Tinkasimire has died from severe burns after spending five days in an intensive care unit at Mulago Hospital, police says.

Agnes Ageno Tinkasimire, aged 40, breathed her last Sunday night at the national referral health facility where she had slipped into a coma since Tuesday last week.

Police spokesperson, Judith Nabakooba confirmed the death.

She sustained multiple injuries when unidentified assailants torched their house in Mukono early Tuesday morning.

The yet-to-be-identified attackers torched the house with its occupants – Ageno and a househelp – at around 3am, neighbours reported.

But the officer in charge of Bweyogerere Fire brigade station, Fred Sserwanga, said the incident happened at around 2am.

According to Sserwanga, the arsonists used petrol to light the fire.

Some of the neighbours suspected that the attackers had poured petrol around the house, tied a cotton cord around to convey the fire, and dipped one end in a jerrycan of petrol before lighting the cord.

They are also said to have placed sachets of pounded red pepper, to allegedly deter rescuers from breaking the door to save the family.

“By the time we came the fire had blown out of proportion and the flames were too high. We were coughing and our eyes itching as a result of the red pepper that was used,” says James Mugerwa, a neighbour.

The incident has since been tossed into a sea of controversy over who and what could have inspired it.

While some people say it could be a family affair, others are linking it to the recent role of the parliamentary committee on presidential affairs in the demolition of the city structures.

The committee days before the fire incident had ordered that all illegal structures in Kampala be demolished.

Legislator Tinkasimire heads that committee.

He is reported to have received death threats following that decision by the committee.

"I have not done anything beyond my jurisdiction.  I live in the city and by the law like any other Ugandan. But you choose to visit my house and burn it down when all my family is inside? Who does that?” he questioned.

In what seemed like an attack on his family, the legislator had also asked for protection from the police.

Tinkasimire also had said that the attackers also broke into his brother's house.

"So, I don't know which house or relative of mine they are targeting now. I am a young man and I don't want to lose my property just like that.”

Mysterious murders hit central

Date: Oct 07, 2012

By Vision Reporters

AS Uganda prepares to commemorate 50 years of Independence, some parts of the country have been hit by a wave of mysterious murders.

The murders, which occur at night, have plunged Ugandans in the Central region in fear and panic.

The most affected districts are Mukono, Masaka and Wakiso.

The assailants reportedly sedate their victims, before breaking part of the wall into their houses and brutally killing them.

Unfortunately, the Police seem to have ignored the incidents in favour of providing security in Kampala ahead of the jubilee celebrations.

Police spokesperson, Judith Nabakooba, said she had not received any information from the team investigating the incidents.

Beata Chelimo, the Commandant of the Special Investigations Unit of the Police, declined to comment on the murders while the CID director, Grace Akullo, promised to get back to our reporters, but did not.

However, in Masaka, the mysterious murders have attracted the attention of the army commander, Gen. Aronda Nyakayirima.

New Vision learnt that Nyakirima met security officers in Masaka on Tuesday over the murders. After the meeting, he reportedly launched special investigations.

In one of the latest murder incidents in Masaka, a mother and her 14-year old son were beheaded in Kyesiga sub-county. The assailants are believed to have broken into the deceased’s house on Sunday night after burrowing a hole in the wall of the sitting room.

Family sources said after entering the house, they were seen by a little boy, Hakim Kato, who was grabbed and beheaded.

They added that after killing Kato, the assailants proceeded to his mother’s room and meted out the same treatment.

The two victims are part of the nine people in the district who have been murdered in the same way in a space of seven days.

Some of the victims were members of one family who included George William Senteza, his wife Rose Nakatte, and their children Joram Senoga, Emma Kigozi and Fiona Nalumansi.

The most affected areas in Masaka are Kyesiga and Kyanamukaka subcounties in Bukoto Central constituency, represented in Parliament by the Vice- President, Edward Ssekandi. Ssekandi reportedly attended the burial of the family that was killed on Tuesday.

Murders in Wakiso in Kakiri sub-sountry, Wakiso district, three people have been killed in a similar manner, within a month.

The mysterious murders have scared away residents and some of them have abandoned their homes.

New Vision learnt that others have started vigilante groups to protect residents.

However, there has been an increase in cases of mob justice in a bid to put an end to the silent killings.

“If you cannot identify yourself at night, you risk being lynched,” said one of the residents in Kakiri.

Sharon Nakyeyune, 21, Henry Mutebi, 23 and Livingstone Kalyango, 23, are the latest victims in the area. Unfortunately, no assailant has been arrested.

Early this year, two young men who owned a shop in Busabala in Wakiso were invaded at night by assailants who butchered them and took off with their money.

Similar cases in Mukono Two people were killed recently. Aida Nakiguli, 27, a resident of Butebe village in Mukono Central Division, was one of the victims.

The assailants attacked her at night and butchered her. Although Nakiguli had neighbours, they did not hear her scream during the attack.

The killer reportedly sprayed Chloroform in Nakiguli’s house before killing her. Her body was found the following day at midday, traced by blood which oozed through the door of her house.

One suspect, her former husband, was arrested and charged in connection with the murder.

A couple in Gulu Ward, Mukono Central Division was also killed in the same manner. The assailants broke into their house in the night and slaughtered them.

Police identified the deceased as Godfrey Ssekanyo and his girlfriend Irene Naggayi.

The body of Ssekanyo, who was a business man in St. Balikudembe market, was found by his colleague who had gone to pick him to go for work.

Ssekanyo’s body laid in cold blood next to his wife, who was in critical condition. She was rushed to a nearby hospital from where she succumbed to death from the deep wounds she sustained.

Four people were later arrested in connection with the murder. They have been charged with murder and remanded to Luzira Prison.

Kyambadde raps Musisi over Centenary Park demolition

Publish Date: Sep 27, 2012

By Vision Reporter

Trade and industry minister Amelia Kyambadde has attacked Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) Executive Director for what she termed as inhumane and heavy handed manner in which city authority handles demolitions.

The minister Thursday morning stormed the centenary park grounds facing demolition amidst scenes of chaos as KCCA law enforcement officers with protection from police, led by Kampala Metropolitan district police commander James Ruhweza, were demolishing structures.

A visibly angry Kyambadde first confronted a bewildered Ruhweza and demanded to know why they were treating people like savages.

She said KCCA was responsible for the mess that has been going on at the park because they signed contracts with the developer.

In a stern voice, she said KCCA are only reaping what they sowed. She said she was shocked by the excessive force KCCA director Jennifer Musisi was using to evict tenants after she assured her that they had two months to relocate.

“Why can’t Musisi behave in a civilized manner? Which world is she?” she asked. “I have kept quiet for long about this but as the minister in charge of trade in this country, I will not tolerate this. These are human beings who should be treated with dignity,” an angry Kyambadde said as she was besieged by reporters.

“Why can’t these people respect Ugandans? From here am heading to KCCA to find out why Musisi her team are using a lot of force. Why can’t they negotiate?” the minister said.

Kyambadde said tenants there were victims of circumstances.