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Kabaziguruka Survives the Wrath of Court Martial As Constitutional Court Blocks the Case

2 hours 8 min ago
Kabaziguruka Survives the Wrath of Court Martial As Constitutional Court Blocks the Case

The Nakawa Municipality MP, Michael Kabaziguruka has survived facing the wrath of Court Martial’s Gen. Gutti after constitutional court issued an interim order halting the trial.

This comes on the heel of Kabaziguruka’s application which he filed last year challenging the court martial’s jurisdictions trying him yet he is a civilian.

The constitutional court presided over by Justice Remmy Kasule suspended the trial which was scheduled to commence on January 19 before the seven members of court martial until the 31stJanuary 2017.

The said order has been issued in the presence of Jane Francis Nafuma who represented the Attorney General and Medard  Lubega Ssegona, Kabaziguruka’s advocate.

The state alleges that Kabaziguruka connived with serving army officers to contrive a plot to overthrow the Government of Uganda between February and June last year.

He spent several months on remand at Kigo prison until October last year when he was granted bail by the High court.

He then petitioned the Constitutional court calling for dissolution of the General Court Martial on grounds that it is unlawfully established and has no powers to either try  civilians or  UPDF officers as its jurisdiction is  limited to instilling discipline in errant soldiers.

In the petition Kabaziguruka also seeks for orders discharging him and any other persons facing trial before the court which he terms as an administrative tribunal.

Gambian Parliament Extends Yahya Jammeh’s Term

3 hours 47 min ago
Gambian Parliament Extends Yahya Jammeh’s Term

The Gambia’s parliament has extended President Yahya Jammeh’s term, which is due to end on Thursday following his defeat in elections, by 90 days.

It also approved his decision to declare a 90-day state of emergency in the tiny West African state.

Regional leaders have threatened to use military force to oust Jammeh if he refuses to hand power to President-elect Adama Barrow on Thursday.

Gambia was plunged into crisis after Jammeh rejected Barrow’s shock victory in the 1 December election.

Regional leaders have been unsuccessfully trying to persuade him to step down.

Nigeria has deployed a warship to put further pressure on Jammeh to step down.

Regional bloc ECOWAS, the Economic Community of West African States, has prepared a Senegal-led force but maintains that military intervention would be a last resort.

In his televised announcement on Tuesday,  Jammeh said “any acts of disobedience to the laws of The Gambia, incitement of violence and acts intended to disturb public order and peace” were banned under the state of emergency.

He said security forces were instructed to “maintain absolute peace, law and order”.

The parliament passed a motion condemning what it called the “unlawful and malicious interference” of the African Union and neighbouring Senegal in Gambia’s affairs.

@BBC

Middle East Consultants Limited Extends Labour Market to Saudi Arabia

4 hours 44 min ago
Middle East Consultants Limited Extends Labour Market to Saudi Arabia

By Serestino Tusingwire

Middle East Consultants Limited has extended its labour market to Asian continent particularly in Saudi Arabia.

On Tuesday January 18, Middle East consultants sent over 50 males to work for Kentucky Fried Chicken under McDonald group of Companies.

McDonald is an international business company that runs a collection of luxury hotels, resorts and spa hotels in U.S and Asia.

According to the managing director Gordon Mugyenyi, the 50 boys who were sent on Tuesday are the pioneers from Uganda to this company, and it’s from them that the bosses will determine whether to require more Ugandan workers or not.

“The MacDonald Company has over 5000 job offers for us, the first bunch we have sent today will have to work and convince the bosses that Ugandans are capable, and we shall be sending other bunches periodically.” Mugyenyi said.

He noted that this Macdonald Company is only interested in males who shall work as cooks, restaurant attendants, receptionists and waiters.

It is the first time Middle East taking workers to Saudi Arabia, though they have taken a number of them to other countries like Qatar, Abudhabi, Dubai and many others in the middle east.

Mugyenyi said that though McDonald is not taking ladies, the company still has many offers for ladies to work as security guards, drivers, receptionists and maids in United Arab Emirates.

Mugyenyi clarified that Middle East Consultants is a certified company and is trusted by many Ugandans since it has taken many of them and they have become successful in life.

He however warned human traffickers who take Ugandans and fail to get them jobs as promised to stop the vice, because if these people meet challenges, they send a bad picture to even legal and clean companies like Middle East.

He urged Ugandans always avoid being taken by human traffickers through the border yet they can use Middle East Consultants and archive more goals than they crave for.

Emphasizing the transparency issue, Mugyenyi said, “Before they travel however, the parents of these people must sign consent so that the parent knows how much his/her daughter or son is going to; earn, work from and the conditions she/he will be working under and the office that has taken him/her.”

Middle East still ensures safety of these workers even when they go abroad.

On this matter, Mugyenyi noted that, “When they start work, I personally visit them on a quarterly basis to ensure that they are working as per the contract signed. If they are facing any challenges, they tell me and we resolve it with the employers immediately.”

Meanwhile, the company conducts interviews almost every day and the successful people are taken to work abroad for big monies. News reaching our desk indicate that today, Middle East Consultants have sent 60 people to work as security guards in Qatar, and on Saturday, another bunch of 60 will also be leaving the country.

Bloodshed Looms in Gambia As Errant Jammeh Declares State Of Emergency

7 hours 47 min ago
Bloodshed Looms in Gambia As Errant Jammeh Declares State Of Emergency

Gambians are in massive fear as President Yahya Jammeh whose term ends today, declares a 90-day state of emergency.

He decried “extraordinary” foreign interference in his country’s affairs and December’s election.

Regional leaders have been unsuccessfully trying to persuade Jammeh to hand over power to Adama Barrow, who won the polls.

The move comes after Nigeria deployed a warship to put further pressure on Jammeh to step down.

Regional bloc ECOWAS, has prepared a Senegal-led force but maintains that military intervention would be a last resort.

In his televised announcement, Jammeh said “any acts of disobedience to the Gambian laws, incitement of violence and acts intended to disturb public order and peace” are banned under the state of emergency.

He said security forces were instructed to “maintain absolute peace, law and order”.

Earlier, the National Assembly passed a motion condemning what it called the “unlawful and malicious interference” of the African Union and the country’s neighbour, Senegal, in The Gambia’s affairs.

Museveni Defends Shs6bn Handshake

8 hours 8 min ago
Museveni Defends Shs6bn Handshake

By Serestino Tusingwire

The president of Uganda H.E Yoweri K Museveni has defended the saga in which he directed the giving of Shs6bn to some government top shots as a reward.

While speaking to NRM Caucus in Entebbe on Tuesday, Museveni said that the act was deliberate and it was only meant to thank all those that were involved in oil case against Tullow.

“I reject that I did anything wrong. I am very proud of these young people,” he said.

It’s worth noting that in June 2015, a protracted legal battle over capital gains tax between URA and Tullow oil resulted into a settlement of Sh824bn and about Shs6bn was doled out to senior government officials as a reward for their role in facilitating the successful settlement.

Some of the beneficiaries of this money include Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) commissioner general Doris Akol – Shs242, Uganda National Roads Authority boss Allen Kagina – Shs242, Kampala Capital City Authority boss Jennifer Musisi – Shs121, Finance ministry Permanent Secretary Keith Muhakanizi – Shs108 (and his predecessor Chris Kassami – Shs393), former attorney generals Peter Nyombi – Shs226 and Fred Ruhindi – Shs93, as well as the solicitor general among others.

However, the general public did not perceive it in good faith and demand for this money to be returned to government coffers because it was not illegally given out.

Museveni noted that during court proceedings, many people persuaded him to chill the case, but he was confident in the group that was handling it, which indeed did not disappoint him. It was through this background that he decided to thank them.

“If the support staff were part of the big war that saved Uganda trillions and gained US$451 million, if they get 50m Ugandan shillings for their first time in life, it is okay. It was their luck that they were part of the war,” Museveni said.

He however admitted that the process of naming the beneficiaries could have gone wrong and some people who were not even involved in the case were included on the list making them  42.

“The only thing that could have gone wrong was to infiltrate names of people on the list who were not involved on the case,” Museveni said.

AFCON 2017 DAY 3: Ivory Coast Held to a Goalless Draw as DR Congo wins 1:0

Tue, 01/17/2017 - 08:44
AFCON 2017 DAY 3:  Ivory Coast Held to a Goalless Draw as DR Congo wins 1:0

By Serestino Tusingwire

Ivory Coast which humiliated Uganda cranes with 3 goals to nil recently in a friendly match, was on Monday held to a goalless draw by Togo.

The defending champions Ivory Coast played Togo on Monday evening in their opening Group C match at the Africa Cup of Nations in Gabon.

All teams looked stronger and expected to win against each other, but at 90th minute, neither side found their fluency.

Wilfried Zaha, making his competitive debut for Ivory Coast after switching international allegiance from England, looked just about the liveliest player on show.

Both sides were guilty of wasting set-piece opportunities. Togo’s corners left a lot to be desired, while Ivory Coast fared no better from a series of free-kicks.

On the other hand, still in group C, DR Congo put their difficult Africa Cup of Nations build-up behind them to beat Morocco in their opening fixture, despite finishing with 10 men.

Four of the five games at the tournament have now been drawn.

Dog Kills Gambian President-Elect’s Son

Tue, 01/17/2017 - 08:15
Dog Kills Gambian President-Elect’s Son

The son of Gambia’s President-elect Adama Barrow has died after being bitten by a dog.

Eight-year-old Habibu Barrow is reported to have died on the way to the hospital on Sunday in Manjai near the Gambian capital Banjul.

Barrow missed his son’s funeral as he was advised to remain in Senegal for his safety.

Barrow won the election last year but outgoing President Yahya Jammeh does not accept the result.

The regional body Ecowas has asked Barrow to stay in Senegal until Thursday – the planned date of the inauguration.

It also says it is considering military intervention to force Jammeh to relinquish power.

Jammeh applied to the Supreme Court to stop Barrow’s inauguration.

But on Monday, the Chief Justice refused to rule on the issue as he was a subject of the injunction which sought to stop him swearing in Barrow.

Thousands of people have been leaving the country, some telling the BBC it was not safe.

Barrow is a devout Muslim who is reportedly married with two wives and had five children, according to the Gambian newspaper The Point.

@BBC

Kanyamunyu, Co-Accused Return To Court Today

Tue, 01/17/2017 - 07:45
Kanyamunyu, Co-Accused Return To Court Today

By Serestino Tusingwire

Matthew Kanyamunyu, and two other suspects who are accused of being behind the infamous Lugogo Forest Mall shooting in which a one Keneth Akena was killed, are expected to re-appear before Nakawa Magistrates Court this morning.

Matthew Kanyamunyu, his girlfriend Cynthia Munwangari and his brother Joseph Kanyamunyu are accused of murdering child activist Akena on November 12.

The trio appeared before Nakawa grade one magistrate Noah Sajjabi on January 3 for hearing, but instead they were sent back to Luzira till today pending investigations.

This was after the state prosecutor, Rachael Nabwire, told court that investigations into the murder case were still going on and requested for more time.

They are appearing before court today hoping that investigations are complete to allow the trial begin.

Once investigations are complete, the trio will be committed to the High Court for trial, since their case is capital in nature and only tried by the high court.

Prosecution alleges that on November 12, while at Game Stores, Kanyamunyu in company of his girlfriend, allegedly shot Akena whom he accused of scratching his car, and drove him to Norvik hospital where he died from.

His brother Joseph Kanyamunyu is held on condition that the telecom printouts indicated that he was contacted immediately after the incident, which puts him in position to be having some knowledge on the incident.

New EC Staff Swears in Today

Tue, 01/17/2017 - 07:22
New EC Staff Swears in Today

By Serestino Tusingwire

The newly appointed electoral commissioners are to officially take office today January 17.

This will be after a swearing in ceremony that is scheduled to take place this morning at 9am at high court in Kampala.

In November last year, President Yoweri Museveni appointed Court of Appeal Judge Simon Mugenyi Byabakama to replace Kiggundu who had spent 14 years as EC chair.

Museveni also appointed Aisha Lubega as the vice chairperson and Peter Emorut, Steven Tashobya, Prof George Piwang and Mustapha Ssebaggala Kigozi as commissioners.

According to Judiciary spokesperson, Solomon Muyita, the ceremony will be presided over by the chief justice.

Muyita noted that the electoral commission has too much work pending in office at the moment and need to start their work immediately after being sworn in.

The team will start by organizing the controversial Local council elections that is expected to take place in mid March this year.

Why Oil Bonanza ‘Eaters’ are quiet

Mon, 01/16/2017 - 21:10
Why Oil Bonanza ‘Eaters’ are quiet

By John V Sserwaniko

If you have been one of those wondering why the beneficiaries of the Shs6bn 42 government officials-politicians and civil servants-shared for their participation in the recovery of capital gains tax involving Heritage Oil and GoU, just read this.

Reliable sources have revealed that some of the 42 officials have been confiding in their close acquaintances urging them not to worry.

Reason? President Museveni will have the last word on the saga.

“Madam has been telling us not to worry because the President told them to do their work and ignore the angry public debate. Madam says he told them he will politically handle the matter with Parliament through the NRM Caucus,” said an aide to one of the implicated big ladies that were hitherto thought to be incorruptible.

The source added that: “Madam says the President is equally quiet because he is waiting to strike at the right time. In fact efforts have started. MPs are being engaged and soon you will see many of them characteristically calling news conferences to say ‘I was misled I now have better facts.’

This is something you have heard and seen before in that Parliament.

The big man is leveraging on the fact that there is mini-cabinet reshuffle coming up before Easter and many MPs will be desperate to shun the bad boys baying for the 42 officials’ blood in Parliament.”

The same source stressed “that is why the 42 officials are quiet and confident.”

He added: “You will soon see MPs pinning their colleagues accusing them of vendetta. They will be arguing demonizing colleagues for having vendetta against Keith Muhakanizi and Rose Akol for their role in actively opposing the tax exemption of MPs’ transport allowances.”

Akol and Muhakanizi are accused by MPs for secretly meeting Museveni and lobbying him not to sign onto a Bill that proposed this exemption.

The small clique of MPs defending the 42 officials will soon be out arguing that they have got better facts and have concluded its improper to be on a bandwagon of vindictive legislators indiscriminately going after 42 officials yet in actual sense the anger is specifically on Akol and Muhakanizi.

State House aides have also advised the 42 officials to privately engage some media activists giving them good facts to be running around with separately defending them on radio and TV talk shows as the Parliamentary U-turn shapes out.

Efforts to verify this information on the alleged Museveni backing of the 42 officials were futile as Don Wanyama, who speaks for the President, was unreachable by press time.

We rang on his known MTN line but it was switched off and he was yet to reply our text messages by press time.

Meanwhile some MPs have proposed to conduct a public hearing of the 42 officials “who must personally appear in Parliament, apologize and return the money which must be handed over to Parliament before TV cameras or bring cheques.”

This is according to Nakaseke MP Lutamaguzi Semakula, a blue eyed boy for Speaker Rebecca Kadaga.

“We are about 50 MPs so far sharing this view and we are persuading the Speaker to buy into our proposal so that we demonstrate high transparency levels the 10th Parliament wants to set,” Semakula told us over the weekend.

In the NRM camp, basically Museveni core supporters in NRM Caucus, there are fears the population may ride on the momentum created against the 42 officials to demonize the President and blackmail MPs to refuse to pass future amendments aimed at scrapping age limits which is the only hurdle now standing between Museveni and 6th elective term running between 2021 and 2026.

Semakula, a very outspoken DP MP, confirms that he is part of a team of 50 liberal-minded legislators who intend to ride on the unanimity created by the onslaught against the 42 officials to defeat impending efforts by Musevenists to scrap age limits. Watch this space!

Gambians Flee the Country Ahead Of Barrow ‘Inauguration’

Mon, 01/16/2017 - 18:01
Gambians Flee the Country Ahead Of Barrow ‘Inauguration’

A worker at The Gambia’s main ferry crossing has told the BBC that thousands of people are fleeing every day as they are “afraid of war”.

“People are in chaos, people are leaving” as they don’t know what is going to happen, he said.

 

The Gambia’s Chief Justice has declined to rule on an application by President Yahya Jammeh to ban the inauguration of Adama Barrow as his successor.

Barrow won the election and an inauguration is planned for Thursday.

But Jammeh rejected the result and is refusing to step down until the Supreme Court hears his challenge, in May.

His legal team had asked for an injunction to block Barrow’s inauguration, but Chief Justice Emmanuel Fagbenle said he could not rule on the issues as he is a subject of it.

The motion sought to stop him from swearing in Barrow.

Parliament has also reconvened for an emergency session. While the reasons for the meeting are unclear, but rumours have it that parliament may be asked to extend Jammeh’s term of office.

Barrow will stay in Senegal until his inauguration, state media in Senegal say.

Meanwhile, regional bloc ECOWAS has said it is considering military intervention to force Jammeh to relinquish power.

The UN refugee agency said last week that several thousand people, mainly children, have crossed into Senegal from The Gambia since 3 January.

“UNHCR teams report seeing buses filled with children, accompanied by women, cross the border,” said Liz Ahua, the regional representative for UNHCR.

New EC Staff to Swear in Tomorrow

Mon, 01/16/2017 - 17:28
New EC Staff to Swear in Tomorrow

By Serestino Tusingwire

The newly appointed electoral commissioners will be sworn in on Tuesday morning two months after being appointed. The function will take place at High Court in Kampala.

In November last year, President Yoweri Museveni appointed Court of Appeal Judge Simon Mugenyi Byabakama to replace Kiggundu who had spent 14 years as EC chair.

Museveni also appointed Aisha Lubega as the vice chairperson and Peter Emorut, Steven Tashobya, Prof George Piwang and Mustapha Ssebaggala Kigozi as commissioners.

According to Judiciary spokesperson, Solomon Muyita, the ceremony will be presided over by the chief justice.

Muyita noted that the electoral commission has too much work pending in office at the moment and need to start their work immediately after tomorrow’s ceremony.

The team will start by organizing the Local council elections that is expected to take place in mid March this year.

Plenary to Resume after Kavuma’s Injunction Was Quashed

Mon, 01/16/2017 - 16:28
Plenary to Resume after Kavuma’s Injunction Was Quashed

By Serestino Tusingwire

Parliament is set to resume its plenary sittings on Wednesday this week after a short period of closure.

In a statement released on Monday signed by clerk to parliament, Jane Kibirige, plenary sessions will resume on Wednesday at 2pm while all committee activities will resume on Tuesday January 17.

It’s worth noting that parliament was adjourned since Tuesday 10th January following a mixed reaction in the house against an injunction that was barring it from debating the Shs6bn oil cash bonanza saga.

On January 9, the deputy chief justice, Steven Kavuma issued an injunction restraining parliament, any person or authority from investigating, questioning or inquiring into” the Shs6bn presidential handshake saga.

However, the no nonsense Kadaga called the injunction ‘stupid’ and adjourned the Parliament indefinitely until it is withdrawn.

This forced the judiciary to announce the withdrawal of the injunction and the petitioner, Eric Sabiiti apologized for his acts intending to block parliament proceeding on the matter.

Turkish Cargo Plane Crash: Death Toll Has Risen To 37

Mon, 01/16/2017 - 14:50
Turkish Cargo Plane Crash: Death Toll Has Risen To 37

A Turkish cargo plane flying from Hong Kong has crashed in Kyrgyzstan, killing at least 37 people, most of them on the ground, officials say.

The Boeing 747 TC-MCL aircraft operated by ACT Airlines crashed as it landed in fog at Manas airport, 25km (15 miles) north of the capital, Bishkek.

At least 15 buildings were destroyed in a village outside the airport, with a number of children among the dead.

Flight TK6491 was to have stopped at Manas en route to Istanbul in Turkey.

ACT is an Istanbul-based airline operating under the name MyCargoThe planeis believed to have been around 14 years old.

Deputy PM Muhammetkaly Abulgaziev said on state TV: “According to preliminary information, the plane crashed due to a pilot error.”

One witness, Baktygul Kurbatova, told local media: “I woke up because of a bright red light outside. I couldn’t understand what was happening.

“It turns out the ceiling and the walls were crashing on us. I was so scared but I managed to cover my son’s face with my hands so that debris would not fall on him.”

@BBC

Panic as Bird Flu Returns to Uganda

Mon, 01/16/2017 - 13:44
Panic as Bird Flu Returns to Uganda

Government has confirmed the outbreak of Pathogenic Avian Influenza commonly known as Bird Flu in districts of Entebbe and Masaka. This came to be known after mass bird death reports from those districts.

According to the minister for Agriculture Animal Industry and Fisheries, Vincent Ssempijja, the ministry was on 2nd January informed by Uganda Wildlife Education Center of a report of mass death of wild birds seen by fishermen at Lutembe beach at the shores of Lake Victoria.

He adds that another report was received on January 13th from Masaka district.

“UWEC communicated to Uganda government chemist and the commissioner of animal health of my ministry. We immediately sent a team to investigate the mass bird death together with a team from government chemist and UWEC” Ssemoijja said in a statement.

“The specimen unfortunately has turned positive to the very serious disease, the ‘bird flu’ which affects both humans and animals and which causes high number of deaths in both species,” he added.

Ssempijja explained that five domestic ducks and one hen specimen which were brought from Masaka tested positive to the HPAI. This diagnosis was undertaken by the National Animal Disease Diagnostics and Epidemiology Centre.

A National Taskforce which is multi-disciplinary with human and animal experts from government, agencies and NGO that is usually called upon to handle outbreaks of diseases that affect both humans and wild animals has been put in place to handle the disease outbreak.

The minister calls upon the public to report any cases of mass birds, animals, both domestic and wild at any government authority nearest to them, but especially the veterinary authorities; report any cases of sickness or death of human to the nearest human health facility or to the ministry of health.

Bird owners have also been advised to house them, avoid interaction domestic and wild birds and animals. People must also not touch or eat wild birds or other wild animals that are found dead, they should instead report to the nearest veterinary authority.

Uganda UK Convention Boss Roots for Investment In Uganda

Mon, 01/16/2017 - 12:21
Uganda UK Convention Boss Roots for Investment In Uganda

The Vice-Chairman of Uganda convention in UK has advised Ugandans in the Diaspora to take advantage of the conducive investment environment and incentives.

Mr. Bernard Robinson Magulu; CPA, FCCA, the Vice President of Uganda Convention in UK and Country Representative has advised Diasporans to utilise the current boost in the investment climate in Uganda:

Bernard appealed to Ugandans in the Diaspora to take advantage and target sectors like: Agriculture/Agribusiness & Agro-processing; Tourism; Minerals/Oil &Gas; and Science, Technology & Innovations (STI) including ICT.

He encouraged Diasporans to take advantage of the Industrial and Business Parks that Uganda Investment Authority (“UIA”) is setting up countrywide which aim to introduce new research technologies and subsequently increase revenue generation for Uganda.

He also urged the Ugandans in the Diaspora to setup business targeting industrial parks in their home regions. UIA also approved another four (4) regional science and technology industrial parks in Kyankwanzi, Rubirizi, Kamuli and Nebbi Districts to improve scientific and industrial innovations linked to major research institutions in the Country.

Quoting a recent interview by the Ag. Executive Director of UIA Mr. Byensi; Mr. Bernard Magulu affirmed that agriculture remains the major economic backbone of Uganda.

Indeed, there are many Government programmes geared at increasing productivity, for instance Operation Wealth Creation (OWC) project.

As these bear fruit, there is a big need to add value to the increased output, investment in agro processing for export and packaging.

Packaging is a very integral sector to competiveness in exports. Uganda has a very long list of exportable agro products.

Mr. Magulu also cited opportunities in the tourism sector potential where there is a potential in the creation of new tourism products, good affordable accommodation and all the other businesses that surround tourism i.e. crafts, culture (lifestyle experience, theatres, drama, food, etc.). Other sectors with viable areas of investment e.g. Logistics, food supply, waste management, etc.

In order for Uganda to improve its economic growth, a need to attract more investments in value addition to Uganda’s resources is crucial.

According to Mr. Charles Omusana Director Investment Facilitation, investors can now use the UIA electronic One Stop Centre, eBiz which has modules like the Business Registration System (BRS), the online application for an investment license (UIA), the online application for an environmental impact assessment (NEMA), the interface to the e-VISA to process online applications for Visas and special permits and passes, and the online application for the City Operators Identification Number (COIN).

The business registration process is now fully automated and an investor (both local and foreign) can apply to register a business online on the e-BIZ platform (www.ebiz.go.ug) thereby bringing all investor-related services under one roof.

ARMY RESHUFFLES: How Will Gen Angina Be Remembered

Mon, 01/16/2017 - 12:06
ARMY RESHUFFLES: How Will Gen Angina Be Remembered

By John V Sserwaniko

Until this week defense reshuffle, Charles Angina was the Deputy Chief of Defense Forces (CDF). Knowledgeable sources say the very prayerful General cordially worked with his boss CDF Katumba Wamala. As DCDF, Angina busied himself frequently visiting army installations talking to soldiers acquainting himself with their welfare concerns.

He would regularly share his findings with colleagues in top management meetings.

“He also liked routinely assessing the combat readiness of the forces within and outside Uganda in Central African Republic, South Sudan and even Somalia,” the source said.

It’s also true Angina’s simplicity made it easy for many ordinary soldiers to always confide in him personal problems. Many went to him for counseling and advice.

His undisguised love for prayer made for him enemies as critics saw him as turning the army office into a spiritual center of sorts.

“He is deeply spiritual and likes prayer. If he isn’t on duty at office or abroad, you will find him in his house in Kyambogo fasting and praying. He believes prayer is the best way to stabilize institutions,” said one of the many insiders we talked to for this article.

His dad died but mum lives in Magamaga in Busoga where Angina built for her. Angina regularly attends fellowship with friends at a house in Luzira where other officers like Ondoga also converge for spiritual nourishment.

The man from Serere also despises material things the very reason he owns no house in Kampala. The Kyambogo property where he stays with his spouse and kids is rented for him by the military. His only property is in Mbale which he bought from the Custodian Board.

Socially he has deep roots in Mbale where his father worked as a prisons officer. In Teso he belongs to a small community of Bakenyi which is always discriminated and despised by the mainstream Itesots. The Bakenyi famously engaged in fishing and lived on water areas of present day Serere district.

His wife is a Gishu from Mbale but has two children from his original marriage to an Iteso woman.  His wife’s father was late Mukhana. Angina is also related to Bank of Uganda Governor Emmanuel Mutebile because his wife’s mum was Mutebile’s sister.

As a young private, Angina was mentored by NRA legendary fighter/commander Chefe Ali who recruited him while serving as NRA’s Chief of Staff.

Angina, who went to school in Mbale, originally belonged to UNLA of Obote and was sympathetic to a faction of Obote loyalists that resisted Okello Lutwa even after the 1985 coup. This hardliners group was patronized by Col William Omaria.

Some remnants of this group even tried to fight NRA that eventually ousted Lutwa. It was in the midst of this confusion that Chefe Ali reached out and persuaded a number of these young UNLA officers to embrace NRA. Angina, who joined UNLA in 1984, had just returned from a Cadet course in Tanzania and his first army assignment was effectively under NRA closely supervised by Chefe Ali who first made him his IO (Intelligence Officer).

However, many Itesots hated him seeing his embracing of NRA as betrayal. Chefe Ali used younger Angina to lure many Itesot fighters to abandon groups like Peter Otai’s UPA to embrace Museveni’s nascent NRA. Musa Ecweru was among the many he recruited from rebel ranks to NRA.

This decimated the rebellion and initially made Angina hated by many conservatives in Teso community.

ARMY WORK

Angina, who got born again at a young age, has had a well accomplished army career notwithstanding the original hostility by Teso elders who loathed his soft spot for NRA.

For many Museveni years, the Itesots saw Angina as the highest ranking army officer from their place only 2nd to Gen Jeje Odong.

Even when he is officially barred, Angina has always been politically very engaged doing Museveni’s clandestine political errands.

Sometimes he would initiate his own political activities widely campaigning for Museveni, bolstering NRM teams, in parts of Teso and Bugisu.

“There was always a vacuum as the political heavyweights from these areas would primarily be campaigning for themselves. Angina always made use of the army logistics to fill the gap,” said a source.

He also partly got into problems after being accused of being the undeclared spy that would report to Museveni some of the Teso colleagues whose loyalty was doubted as in between JPAM and Museveni.

His reports resulted in some Ministers being identified and isolated resulting into political defeats in February 2016 elections. Some of these returned to haunt him in the subsequent defense elections of UPDF MPs whereby the much targeted Angina narrowly lost to newcomer Felix Kulaigye. His supporters blamed his humiliating defeat by Kulaigye on a campaign mounted by Jessica Alupo’s supporters and on the perceived corrupt in the Defense Ministry who always felt incorruptible Angina was reporting their deals to the President.

He conceded defeat and moved on. His best allies in Teso include Bukedea MP Anita Among and Parliamentary PR Director Chris Obore.

Broadly speaking, he has served the military in the following ways: When Chefe Ali, whom he served as IO left for other assignments in late 1980s, Angina stayed in Gulu serving as Brigade Commander.

Angina after Gulu was deployed in Kasese for anti-ADF operations. This was in mid 1990s. He was in charge when the Kichwamba massacre happened. Gen James Kazini, who had always had issues with his incorruptibility, rode on this to paint to the CiC as incompetent.

Kazini wondered why a serious commander wouldn’t prevent Kichwamba but Angina defended himself saying he was in Kampala attending to other high command errands.

The row with Kazini vanquished Angina for some time and he was put on Katebe for months until Museveni deployed him to DRC as a sector commander.

DRC is one mission Kazini closely supervised and was subsequently involved in directly. Inevitably Angina’s differences with Kazini only escalated.

Angina survived several assassination attempts blamed on the Kazini camp. There was the issue of looting timber and other natural resources in DRC.

Angina always reprimanded his men insisting the mission was ADF and not looting. This angered Kazini (eventually indicted in UN report) and Angina’s problems only escalated.

Besides the assassination rumors, Kazini was daily reporting him to Museveni as a bad operations commander. Feeling very isolated, Angina fled the DRC frontline and hid in his house in Mbale.

While there he linked up with childhood friend Deo Matsanga, a Museveni political activist, who linked him to James Wapakabulo. He had tried to reach Museveni through Mukula and Jeje Odong to report the Kazini mistreatment but the duo didn’t help him enough.

Wapa rang Museveni straight away saying “I have a commander here who badly wants to see you to share some information regarding the Congo operation.”

Museveni immediately granted the meeting and it’s said the intelligence he got from Angina partly contributed to Kazini’s eventual knifing from the office of Army Commander and eventual investigation by a committee that had Mbabazi, Sejusa and others over improper conduct.

For some time Angina refused to return to DRC claiming Kazini’s people would kill him. As he sort out Kazini, Museveni deployed Angina to Tanzania and later US as military attaché.

On return from US, Angina was made Chief of Staff after which he became Chairman Court Martial. From court martial he was re-appointed Chief of Staff in 2012.

Meanwhile he was also UPDF MP. In May 2013 he benefited from the dust Sejusa raised prompting Museveni to make a haste army reshuffle which saw Katumba Wamala become CDF deputized by Angina.

Angina replaced Gen Ivan Koreta. This has been Angina’s station until this week reshufle that saw him deployed as Gen Saleh’s deputy in OWC.

He has since gracefully taken the new assignment and close acquaintances say he is ready to work with enthusiasm like never before. Angina has also remarkably been close to Tamale Mirundi whom he would occasionally prompt to appear on Teso radios to detoxicate opposition propaganda there including in 2016 elections when Angina and others had to work real hard to prevent Besigye from sweeping this politically very volatile region.

Uganda’s Top PR Gurus & What Makes Them Tick

Mon, 01/16/2017 - 11:46
Uganda’s Top PR Gurus & What Makes Them Tick

By John V Sserwaniko & Moses Semakula

Cynthia Mpanga: She is a young adult who works with Standard Chartered bank. She is rated highly by media people because she promptly gets back to you with very good answers. She is passionate and knowledge about the institution she speaks for. Her prowess was recently recognized when peers elected her to be president of PRAU under which they unite. At StanChart the communications department was recently boosted by the coming on board of Hellen Nangonzi.  

Sam Apedel: He is a veteran editor from Sunday Vision who now oversees NWSC’s PR needs and is the man behind the entity’s improved image to the extent that today it’s a model of excellence when it comes to successful parastatals not only in Uganda but regionally. MD Eng Silver Mugisha’s team has done a good job and Apedel’s role is to ensure the values the entity stands for are well articulated to the public.

Jim Mugunga: He was originally a business reporter at Monitor newspaper and also reported politics at Parliament with peers like Pius Katunzi, Ofwono Opondo & Robert Mukasa etc. As a business reporter, he scooped the story of the Greenland Bank scandal having been good friends with its owner Kiggundu and bosses at BoU. After doing graduate studies abroad, Jim left along the newsroom to speak for the Ministry of Finance. He sits in Communications House in the offices of Privatization Unit but is always available to answer anything regarding the powerful men across the road in the Ministry of Finance. He is humble and respects his political and technical bosses at the Ministry. Once called upon he will cross over to the Ministry building at lightning speed. He is always available on phone and mail. He can even drive to the newsroom to drive the point home.  He is parental and a mentor who never allows a scribe to leave his office without some professional advice. He would do even much better if Muhakanizi would logistically facilitate his office.

URSB’ Nangobi: She speaks for a fairly new agency mandated to handle all trade mark and business registrations in Uganda. Peers say she is very energetic and likes her work. She never misses taking a call from a journalist and always has her facts on her finger tips. She has fully studied her organization and its PR challenges in such a short time. She replies text messages and mails from reporters. She is a fast mover who will make you speak to the relevant manager even without appointment.  She understands the truth that news is perishable and must be handled with the timeliness it deserves. Her other name is Provia and is one of the few PR persons without a lot of newsroom background.

UEGCL’s Simon Kasyate: He is a veteran journalist who likes Andrew Mwenda more than anything else. Critics accuse him of even trying to speak and behave like Mwenda who got him from the dust and turned him into a big media celebrity. Kasyate grumblingly left Daily Monitor where he started as a “Coffee Break” writer shortly after Mwenda’s acrimonious departure. He went to NTV as a reporter and news anchor where he left after quarreling with his Kenyan supervisor. He went to work with energy firm Eskom and now works with Uganda Electricity Generation Company Ltd (UEGCL) which has somehow tamed his appetite to talk to the media.  Unable to do without media visibility, Kasyate ate a humble pie and returned to NTV uninvited and now co-hosts the Morning show which he uses to defend Museveni and his government image. He has also worked with the EU where he left after exhausting his unrenewable contract. Prior Monitor newspaper, Kasyate was an entertainment report for UTV and later on WBS. At EU, Kasyate picked a quarrel with Monitor colleagues who were making his work hard by writing stories hostile to government and attributing them to EU sources. Tabu Butagira was among those he picked bones with. He is forceful, eloquent and passionate about his UEGCL job.   

Mak’s Ritah Namisango: She speaks for Uganda’s premier University and this Masscom graduate has held this job since the days of Prof Luboobi as VC having replaced larger than life Hellen Kaweesi. She is a survivor because when he became VC, Baryamureeba tried to oust her but failed. Instead it’s Baryamureeba who had to leave Mak and left Namisango intact. Namisango likes communicating by email and is available 24/7 including Sundays. She personally knows all scribes covering Makerere and their respective strong and weak points.  

UCC’s Isaac Kalembe: He is a former journalist and works with UCC as a communications manager directly reporting to Fred Otunnu who is corporate affairs director. Kalembe is versatile and prompt when required to organize for scribes to meet and interview his boss Godfrey Mutabazi.  Kalembe, who wedded recently, remarkably loves RP reporters because he finds them reliable & timely when it comes to running UCC stories.  

OPM’s Julius Mucunguzi:  He is a former daily Monitor journalist and benefited a lot from the Besigye 2001 story. He was the one assigned to cover candidate Besigye and was assured of the lead story every day through the campaign period. This gave him prominence that took him places until he found himself working with the Commonwealth secretariat in London whereafter he returned to Uganda to work as Communications consultant for PM Ruhakana Rugunda who is like his foster father. Mucunguzi is friendly, approachable and likes his job. He was inspired by Mwenda into journalism after Mwenda appeared to his High School and addressed that year’s S6 candidates. He liked the way Mwenda was a close friend to 1st son Muhoozi Kainerugaba. Mucunguzi is very effective using social media.

Sarah Kagingo: Peers at Kibuli Mosque where she prays from fondly refer to her as DIGITAL. This is because of the social media revolution she championed around the Presidency and personally took President Museveni to facebook and twitter and managed his personal accounts until envious colleagues ganged up and forced her out.  Instead of giving up and feeling sorry for herself, Kagingo fell back on the good contacts she had made in the region as she moved with the President and started her own media/PR company called SOFT POWER with offices at Sheraton. It’s with this firm that she consults for some of the regional presidents who used to admire Museveni for having such a versatile lady on his team. In Uganda her clients include OWC headed by her other mentor Gen Saleh. She also does some work for Kibuli Muslims and Buganda kingdom.

OAG’s Gloria Namugera: This pencil-thin lady works for the Office of Auditor General as their publicist directly supervised by AG Muwanga’s deputy Keto Kayemba. The fact that this office has never been embroiled in any major scandal is proof Namugera is doing her job well. She has her reliable team of journalists in all major media houses. She also works well with Parliamentary reporters because her entity is part of Parliament. Just like NWSC’s Mugisha, Muwanga is a high performer which makes Gloria’s work easier.  

NBL’s Sumin Namaganda: The former Monitor sub editor is the communications person for Nile Breweries and she is very good at identifying capable reporters to be on her media team which explains the good publicity for the brand she speaks for. It’s also true she speaks for a client who facilitates her adequately unlike people like Jim Mugunga who operate without any facilitation. Mugunga only gets a salary and airtime and nothing more. He can’t even take scribes out for dinner like Sumin does sometimes.

Abel Kyamutetera: He does a lot of digital communications for a number of brands including NSSF. He is a good writer and insightful on business matters and has a business magazine called CEO. Kyam started out as a business reporter at Monitor where he was helped to join by Alex Atuhaire who used to visit a lady that was a roommate to Kyam’s girl friend. After many years, Kyam left Monitor to work with ZK Advertizing after which he co-founded Fire Works where he employed many fellow reporters. He fell out with colleagues over the morality of the Pension scandal and is now studying law at Makerere University in his 2nd year. Kyam is wealthy, has mentored many and does charity during his free time. He is also very good at originating CSR ideas for his clients.

DTSV’s Tina Wamala: She does communications for Multi-choice Uganda which requires her to speak for DSTV and Gotv. She previously worked with Record TV where she was among the best presenters, which explains why she was easily snatched by prospects of better pay. Record TV had a reputation of not properly remunerating its workers. Wamala is completing her MBA at Makerere.  

Vivian Nakalika: She is perhaps the youngest publicist for a government entity. Married to NBS’ Solomon Serwanja, Nakalika speaks for the Ministry of Health, a feat many think is too big for such a young girl. She replaced her good friend and mentor Rukia Nakamatte who was joining a UNICEF project. Nakalika is now having a good time because she works well with Minister Jane Ruth Aceng who was her personal friend during her days as a news reporter. She has also found favor with Dr. Diana, the new PS. There is also NBS news anchor Rukushana Namuyimba who manages communications for Vodafone telecom based in Kamwokya. She started out as a news anchor at Capital fm and later KFM. She also previously read news on NTV before being lured by NBS’ big pay cheque.

PBU’s Jackie Tahakanizibwa: She is the lady behind PostBank’s increased positive visibility. She previously worked with Monitor Publications as CSR manager. PBU MD Steven Mukweli is one of many clients she was working with on behalf of MPL. The babe from Toro is good at media management. She has identified a team of senior journalists who can never let her down because they understand the brand she works for. Because of her experience and results-oriented approach, the PBU BOD always endorses her proposals without hesitation.

EU’s Emma Gyezaho: He is one of the young Ugandans to have held the post of head communications European Union. A Makerere Masscom graduate of the early 2000s, Gyezaho started out as a reporter for Crown House-based Monitor FM which was managed by Mwenda. It’s in this news department that Kasyate, Mwanguhya Mpagi, Patrick Kamara and others used to work. Gyezaho was assigned the Parliamentary bit and was elevated to reporting for the Monitor newspaper following a vacuum the departure of the Observer team created.  Despite having close connections to the 1st Family, Gyezaho used to write very critical articles in his weekly column called the press gallery. He used to sting many shady government officials and Amama Mbabazi suffered most. The way he wrote about JPAM revealed Gyezaho didn’t fear the mighty. His news reporting took no prisoners and many used to complain to his superiors in vain. He was briefly lured to join a new paper called Razor which folded and he returned to Monitor to write his critical pieces. After a brief stint, an opportunity came knocking to join the EU replacing Kasyate. Gyezaho applied and beat several others and took the job.

UPF’s Felix Kaweesi: He speaks for Uganda Police Force and Gen Kayihura brought him in after things had escalated for the UPF’s image following the brutal beating of Besigye supporters in Kalerwe and Entebbe road. The supporters were clobbered like snakes, attracting global outrage for the government. Fred Enanga who had spoken through the difficult campaign period was sidelined to give way for Kaweesi who has since tried to stabilize the image of the Force. Kaweesi is flamboyant and can authoritatively speak on almost everything given his closeness to IGP Kale Kayihura. He also understands the Force’s strategic positioning having serving held very senior positions. He also knows how to humble himself personally reaching out to key media personalities. Kaweesi is also very respectful and humbly told reporters when he came to office: “I’m not an authority on these [media] things. You are all colleagues and I’m here to learn from you.”  He works very well with colleagues like Emilian Kayima in KMP which is unprecedented. Since the days of Nabakooba vs. Simeo Nsubuga, the national publicist and KMP publicist have always been at loggerheads.

UMC’s Shaban Bantariza: He speaks for the Uganda government and deputizes Ofwono Opondo as head media center. Bantariza is liked by the media center staff for reasons we don’t know. This sometimes makes his boss OO uneasy but life goes on. Shaban speaks very forcefully and takes no prisoners in his “tell it as it is” approach. He is also eloquent easily subduing adversaries during TV or radio debates.  He previously spoke for the army, the UPDF.

Parliament’s Chris Obore:  The tough man from Bukedea currently is the Director communications at Parliament and faces the dilemma of being boss to Hellen Kaweesi who considers herself more senior, more experienced and more qualified. Obore’s belligerent approach has enabled him to create breathing space for August House which is always prone to bad publicity. He has succeeded partly because he found his own reasons to justify the locking out of some of the scribes who considered themselves senior and critical enough to report the 10th Parliament. He ensured the place was full of less troublesome young journalists whose reporting can easily be controlled and kept under check. He has also strategically partnered with newspapers to publicize basic information about Parliament. He is also trusted by both the legislature leaders and executive. He also personally knows many of the people who supervise him having been a senior journalist before.  He has refused to be blackmailed by critics who keep saying he is today less popular with the public than he was 5 years ago. To him the end must justify the means.

Judiciary’s Solomon Muyita: He previously worked as a court reporter for both Vision and Monitor. He was a few years ago head hunted by Secretary to Judiciary Dorcus Okalany who made him Judiciary spokesman, a role previously held by Erias Kisawuzi who has since become a disgruntled man. The truth is whereas he was good also: Kisawuzi was busy because he has other judicial roles as a judicial officer. Muyita has done so well that other MDAs have been considering persuading him with higher pay so that he quits to go and work for them but the man from Busoga seems to feel at home in the Judiciary where he was recently given additional role to speak for the newly created commission of inquiry into land matters. Muyita has done well because he personally knows the judges (had been court reporter) and the newsroom dynamics.

Dennis Obbo: He is the veteran publicist for the lands ministry and has lately been having good rapport with his new PS Dorcus Okalany. Obbo has outlived many Ministers and PSs in this sector and he therefore has good institutional memory of things.

EC’s Jotham Taremwa: Before joining EC, he worked as a communications manager at Parliament under both Kadaga and Sekandi. He was among those who worked under Kagole Kivumbi many years ago. Taremwa is media friendly and supervises a team of others including Paul Bukenya, his deputy. In the February 2016 elections, he exuded power and social media critics claimed he was more powerful than EC Chairman Badru Kiggundu because of the way powerful man Sam Rwakoojo trusted him.

UPDF’s Paddy Ankunda: He speaks for the Defense Ministry and UPDF. Despite being a Mukiga, Ankunda who strikingly resembles Robert Kabushenga, speaks fluent Luganda and this makes his work easier because many of the radios in Kampala run Luganda news besides the English bulletin. He is also a soldier at the rank of Colonel. He manages doing his job by ensuring he remains neutral even when there are things his superiors (the Generals) may not be unanimous about. He is very obedient to authority and ensures is on good terms with all his military and civilian bosses at Mbuya. Ankunda is eloquent though sometimes it isn’t easy speaking for such an intrigue riddled institution. He has regional deputies based in army Divisions but none nationally at Mbuya which makes his job quite hectic. 

FDC’s Semujju Nganda: The Kiira Municipality MP Speaks for the FDC party, a job for which he was elected by party members. Though he is a Besigyeist, Semujju quickly adjusts to new situations and that is how he has managed to very easily work with Party President Gen Muntu whose candidature he didn’t support. Semujju speaks honestly and isn’t known to seek bribes. This has enabled him to consistently maintain his position on things. He loves his party and deeply understands the politics of Uganda having reported and edited politics at Monitor and Observer respectively. He is also very confrontational and won’t hesitate going physical if the situation demands so. His work is easied by the fact that listeners like his wit and has weekly programs on leading political talk shows on Radio Simba and Capital Gang where he reaches millions of people. He also has a weekly newspaper column. All these explain why he had no problem quitting CBS fm when Mayiga became Katikkiro and set hard political conditions for him. He left after telling moderator Med Nsereko: “I will return when there is a new Katikkiro.” Semujju also delegates colleagues like Harod Kaija and youth leader Mulindwa Walid whenever he is unable to show up.

CAA’s Igundura: He speaks for CAA and this is what we have known him for since when we were small boys. This explains the institutional memory he carries with him about CAA. Other key PR practitioners include NRM party’s Rogers Mulindwa, Sheila Kangwagye, BoU’s Xtine Alupo and LDC’s Hamis Lukyamuzi who was an administrator at the same institution but became PR practitioner out of necessity. This was after Justice Percy Tuhaise who used to speak for LDC left to become a Judge a few years ago. Lukyamuzi manages by being one who keeps his word whenever he promises journalists information. He operates without serious funding but keeps reporters happy because he treats them with courteousy which they reciprocate by supporting his work. In his world, there is nothing like closed secrets. He freely gives journalists all the information they need about LDC and his motto is “the people have a right to know.” There is also NMS’ Dan Kimosho who previously worked with Mulago hospital. Kimosho has always encouraged his boss Moses Kamabare to spare time to interact with key media personalities to deepen public’ understanding of the NMS mandate and the results have been spectacular.

AFCON 2017: Senegal Scoops First Win of the Tournament Against Tunisia

Mon, 01/16/2017 - 11:07
AFCON 2017:  Senegal Scoops First Win of the Tournament Against Tunisia

Senegal became the first team to scoop a win in AFCON 2017 tournament after all the first three matches ended in draws.

Senegal began their Africa Cup of Nations campaign with victory over Tunisia in Group B. The game ended 2:0 in favour of Senegal.

Tunisia almost took the lead in the opening two minutes, but Ahmed Akaichi’s header skimmed the post and he smashed a shot narrowly wide.

In between, Senegal took the lead through Sadio Mane’s penalty after Cheikhou Kouyate had been hacked down.

Kara Mbodj powerfully headed in a second, and almost scored an own goal when his clearance struck the post.

Tunisia were guilty of missing plenty of chances, in particular Youssef Msakni, who headed wide from two yards out and shot straight at Abdoulaye Diallo in the second half.

Senegal’s victory put them on top of their group after Algeria’s surprising 2-2 draw against Zimbabwe.

In group A matches that were played on Saturday, Gabon drew 1:1 with Guinea Bissau while Cameron drew with Burkina Faso also 1:1.

Today evening, Ivory Coast will be playing Togo, while DR Congo will be playing Morocco.

Uganda will be in Action on Tuesday evening with Ghana.

Besigye to Report to Court Today

Mon, 01/16/2017 - 09:59
Besigye to Report to Court Today

By Serestino Tusingwire

Opposition stronghold Col. Dr. Kizza Besigye is today expected to report to the High Court’s criminal division as one of the bail conditions for treason offences against him.

Besigye is to report before Court’s registrar in charge of High Court criminal division.

He was first ordered to report twice a month before the Court’s registrar but this was later revised by the deputy registrar Mary Khainza in November 2016. He was then ordered to appear once a month to reduce financial expenses.

However, Besigye is so much disappointed with the way court is handling his case.

The Directorate of Public Prosecution contends that it’s still carrying out the investigations surrounding the saga in which Besigye sworn in himself as a president and even formed the cabinet yet he had not won an election.

Besigye vowed to stop reporting to court if the state does not finish the investigations and allow the trial to start.

 

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