Katikkiro Is for All Who Respect Kabaka [opinion]

Since his appointment as the katikkiro of Buganda two years ago this May, Charles Peter Mayiga has emphasized that the doors to Bulange are open to all who respect the Kabaka regardless of tribe, religion, or political affiliations.

It is, therefore, surprising that The Observer columnist, Ibrahim Ssemujju Nganda, has made it his pet project to criticize Mayiga whenever he feels that Erias Lukwago has not been helped in his quest to be reinstated as Kampala lord mayor.

(See Is Mayiga observing ceasefire or surrendering? The Observer) Ssemujju refers to the katikkiro’s visit to Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) on April 2, 2015, when the authority invited him to receive Kabaka’s messages and collect money (Ettoffaali) for construction of Masengere building.

Unknown to Mayiga, Lukwago and fellow politicians are said to have been standing outside the main entrance, having been denied entry into KCCA headquarters. Lukwago’s problems are well documented and there is need to let the law take its course. However, Ssemujju makes an assumption that Mayiga is responsible for reinstating Lukwago!

Or that Mayiga should not have visited KCCA because Lukwago was not there as lord mayor to welcome him!

For the katikkiro to refuse to go to KCCA until Lukwago has been reinstated as lord mayor would be a mistake on his part. You can’t preach unity while siding with one group against another. In fact, in his speech at KCCA, the katikkiro emphasized the need for unity and the importance of resolving the political wrangles at KCCA.

Previously, while addressing the Buganda Lukiiko, Mayiga offered to mediate between the lord mayor and KCCA executive director Jennifer Musisi. There is need to understand that emancipation for the people isn’t exclusively realisable in the political arena, as Ssemujju’s argument implies. The social and economic spheres are also key, since the impact of aancement in this area, as the katikkiro seems to emphasize, is truly liberating.

Ssemujju also conveniently forgets that the only time Lukwago meets his supporters is when he is with the katikkiro. In fact, in the same week, Mayiga had helped Lukwago address thousands of his supporters in Kawempe and Kampala Central divisions.

At every fundraising stop Mayiga made during his tour of Kyadondo county, the lord mayor was given opportunity to address the gatherings. In fact, he himself, at a speech in St Balikuddembe market, Lukwago acknowledged that this is the only time he has been let free to address his supporters without the police tear-gasing him.

If Mayiga was allegedly against the lord mayor as Ssemujju implies, would he have given him the opportunity to meet and interact with his supporters over two days?

At the ceremony to mark Ssaabasajja Kabaka’s 60th birthday, the lord mayor was invited to Bulange Mengo where he sat among dignitaries and his presence was recognized by Mayiga. If Mayiga was against him, would he have invited him? For those who may not be aware, it is the katikkiro that invites people such events.

Ssemujju and his fellow politicians need to understand that under Mayiga’s leadership, the doors to Mengo will always be open to anybody who respects the Kabaka.

If Musisi has issues with Lukwago, it doesn’t mean that the katikkiro cannot meet her or even go to KCCA. If Ssemujju doesn’t complain when Lukwago is given an opportunity to address his supporters by the katikkiro, why does he find it so offensive when Musisi is given a similar opportunity?

The author is a media and communication consultant.

Source : The Observer