Forum for Democratic Change’s (FDC) Presidential Candidate, Patrick Oboi Amuriat, has promised to strengthen ties between the central Government and Mengo, granting the latter semi-autonomous status.
“We are going to introduce Federal that will accommodate everybody regardless of whether you are a Muganda or you are an Iteso. If the people of Teso want federal status, they will be given federal status,” he pledged.
The federal system which Buganda has been demanding is a regional government of Buganda headed by the Kabaka (king).
Buganda’s demands include full control of all the land that currently is in the hands of the central government and the district land boards within central Uganda.
Under the 1962 Constitution, Buganda had a federal status while Bunyoro, Tooro, Ankole and Busoga kingdoms were semi-federal. The other districts had a unitary government.
President Museveni has since rejected the idea of federal system.
“The real issue is whether we should have political kings, kings wielding political authority,” President Yoweri Museveni told Parliament in 2009.
“This concept is totally rejected by the NRM because it is anti-democracy. The king is not elected. If he wields political power, how will he be held accountable?” wondered Museveni.
However, Amuriat on Thursday December 24, 2020 told residents of Bijaaba trading center in Lwengo District to vote him arguing that President Museveni would not grant them the federal status.
“Buganda has been looking for federal but Mr. Museveni for a long time fed them on feathers of white ants. Museveni has failed to give Federal to Buganda,” he intimated.
Amuriat also hinted on plans to revamp cooperative movements in Buganda as one way of alleviating the living conditions of natives.
“He (Museveni) killed West Buganda cooperative Union so that you people may remain in poverty. You know, I get ashamed when I see Mr. Museveni moving around with envelopes and old men adoring him, kneeling before him to get handouts,” he revealed.
“We are going to reinstate MENGO Coperative union so that we may revamp growing of coffee that will return the glory of Buganda to the Baganda,” Amuriat committed.
Uganda has realised a coffee production boom in recent years.
Exports for the 2019/2020 season, lasting from March 2019 to February 2020, amounted to 4.74 million 60-kilo-bags worth USD 459.52 million, compared to 4.24 million bags worth USD 435 million in 2018/2019.
According to a March 1, 2019 Uganda Coffee Development Authority (UCDA) working document, as of 2019; 109, 993, 307 trees were in production stage in Buganda while Eastern Uganda accounted for a meager 73,305,543.
Away from that, during his campaign trail, Amuriat visited deceased Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIGP) Andrew Felix Kaweesi’s burial site in Kitwe Kya Njovu village, Kyazanga Sub County.
He explained that the purpose of the visit was not only to pay homage to Kaweesi but also to pile pressure on the regime to avail his death report.
“And so even if it’s about 4 years since he died, we thought we are indebted to him and his family……So this is an opportunity to us to call on the authorities to do much better than they have done in trying to get to the bottom of these murders,” he elaborated.
Kaweesi was on March 17, 2017 murdered in cold blood by unknown assassins in Kampala.