Minister denies role in W. Ankole Diocese row

BUSHENYI- State minister for Health Elioda Tumwesigye has denied having a hand in a conflict that has divided Christians in West Ankole Diocese.

Dr Tumwesigye, who is also the Sheema North MP, and Prof Ephraim Kamuntu, the Environment minister, are locked in a battle with Bishop Yona Katonene over the location of Ankole University.

The two politicians reportedly want the university to be located in Sheema District while the bishop wants the university to be located in Bushenyi District. The conflict has since sucked in Christians from both districts.

But last Friday, Dr Tumwesigye denied allegations that he had a hand in the postponement of Church of Uganda Archbishop Stanley Ntagali’s visit to the diocese. The visit had been scheduled for September 8 but was moved to November amid claims that the two ministers were behind this postponement.

However, a tough talking Tumwesigye warned Christians and area leaders to separate politics and church affairs.
“I heard that I and Prof Kamuntu sat with the archbishop and aised him not to step in Sheema. I should be cleared out of this mess because I would not like seeing my people divided by a misunderstanding in the church,” Dr Tumwesigye said.

He also said it was clear that the archbishop’s visit was rescheduled after many petitions from Christians and that he had nothing to do with it.

He also urged the people of Sheema and Bushenyi districts to desist from fighting over trivial issues that divide them.

“It’s of no use to find them fighting over the archbishop’s visit. Even when it comes to the university issue, these are small buildings we shouldn’t fight for because it means we are moving far behind when other societies are developing,” Dr Tumwesigye said.

Dr Tumwesigye said at an appropriate time, a licensed Ankole Western University would open branches across the region.

SOURCE: Daily Monitor

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