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The Kabaka of Buganda sacks his Prime Minister (Katikiro)

Posted by African Press International on February 17, 2007


*”THE widening rift between Mengo and the central government, stalling development programmes and an ever-shrinking network of allies that had been developed by former Katikkiro Joseph Ssemogerere left the Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi with no option but to fire the new premier Dan Muliika, after only one year in office.
Daily Monitor has learnt that the Kabaka started regretting appointing Mr Muliika only weeks after the new Katikkiro took office.

Palace sources have disclosed that the Kabaka has since been trying through emissaries and by direct contact to get Mr Muliika to tone down his confrontational approach.
Insiders have said the consensus was reached amongst the Kabaka’s confidants a few weeks after Mr Muliika’s appointment that the vetting process had been a failure and this was blamed on the haste surrounding the need to replace Mr Ssemwogerere after his team agreed with the central government to pass the regional tier system instead of absolute federalism that Buganda had sought.

Under the regional tier, the katikkiro would be directly elected and there were suspicions in the Kabaka’s court that Mr Ssemwogerere was intending to stand for the powerful post of elected leader of Buganda.

This would arguably be the second most powerful person in the country after the President and certainly more powerful than the Kabaka. Mengo rejected the system and the Kabaka continues to appoint his katikkiro. Mr Muliika, who is a diehard federalist, was fronted by among others, Dr Sulaiman Kiggundu and Mengo officials who have since fallen out with the Kabaka. 

It later dawned on the palace insiders that President Yoweri Museveni had immediately been turned off by Mr Muliika’s abrasive style and simply ‘switched’ him off. Throughout Mr Muliika’s one year tenure, Mr Museveni has never communicated with him yet the President has gone as low as dealing with kingdom broadcasters at CBS Radio.

FDC link
The realisation that Mr Muliika was strongly allied to Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) radicals who coincidentally are the same people who fell out with the Kabaka further alarmed the palace insiders who realized that chances of a meaningful dialogue with the government were getting slimmer.

While it is generally believed that the Kabaka privately sympathised with candidate Kizza Besigye in the 2001 elections, he has never had a relationship with FDC as a party.

His latest move of sacking Mr Muliika has emphasized the point. The group calling itself Buganda Forum, having Dr Kiggundu who is also FDC national president at its forefront, came out strongly in a spirited fight to try to save Mr Muliika from being sacked, but the Kabaka had made up his mind.

Demonstrations, a hasty night press conference, leaks to the press that State House was engineering Mr Muliika’s sack were to no avail.
When Mr Muliika took over as katikkiro, the Kabaka was immediately alarmed by his rebellious attitude towards the central government and later to his own monarch. His leadership skills were also found wanting and he rapidly lost respect among members of the Buganda cabinet and Lukiiko (parliament).

The sources said the word he most frequently used in meetings was ‘kuguguba’ (stubborn resistance) which he constantly urged members and Baganda in general to embrace.
Tshe Kabaka is said to have been making a quiet audit of his premiers performance and also found it below par.

The kingdom’s allies that had been multiplying during Mr Ssemwogerere’s times were fast dwindling, hardly any new socio-economic programmes had been initiated and communication with the central government had died out.

Attempts by Vice President Gilbert Bukenya to restart dialogue with Mengo were frustrated when Mr Muliika reportedly criticised the VP for inviting him for discussions at his private residence instead of making it official.
Mr Muliika then scuttled Dr Bukenya’s efforts by disclosing the private discussions at a large meeting in Mengo.

When the Kabaka realised a couple of months ago that straightening his premier was becoming rather difficult, he dispatched a group of eminent Baganda to try and reason with Mr Muliika but to no avail.

Palace sources said the Kabaka finally enlisted Bishop Balagadde Sekkade for the task but he also failed to move the premier.

In the end, the Kabaka sent the bishop to tell Mr Muliika to resign. But the premier reportedly invoked an old custom that says there can be no resignation from the king’s appointment (Kabaka tebamukuba bwami).

Last Saturday, Mr Muliika secured an appointment with the Kabaka and somehow tried to apologise. But the apology came too late and it was not accepted

By HamMukasa

*”/”*Lifted and Published by African Press in Norway, Apn,, tel +47 932 99 739 or +47 6300 2525

2 Responses to “The Kabaka of Buganda sacks his Prime Minister (Katikiro)”

  1. bak said

    you should post all the mengo contravacies on net


  2. jose said

    that was a back story how do you get information


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