In a fresh revelation, Buganda’s revered monarch, Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi, finds himself caught in the midst of a brewing controversy over a recent meeting between President Yoweri Museveni and the kingdom’s influential clan heads. The meeting, organized by former Buganda minister Joyce Ssebugwaawo, has raised eyebrows and ignited tensions within the Buganda kingdom.
According to sources close to the palace, Kabaka Mutebi, through his Premier Charles Peter Mayiga, has expressed unease over the increasing closeness between the clan heads and President Museveni. The president, in a bid to strengthen his ties with the clan heads, reportedly doled out a substantial sum of money, close to ten billion shillings, worth more than two acres of land, for income-generating projects aimed at improving the welfare of the clan heads.
However, reports emerging from Mengo, the heart of the Buganda kingdom, suggest that the Kabaka is deeply troubled by the high-profile meeting. The lack of communication and consultation with the monarch has only exacerbated the situation. Katikkiro Mayiga revealed during a recent Lukiiko (Buganda’s legislative assembly) session that neither the clan heads nor Ssebugwaawo sought the Kabaka’s approval before meeting with President Museveni. This disregard for protocol has left the Kabaka and his officials feeling blindsided.
“I wasn’t informed of and I have nothing at all to do with that meeting,” the Kabaka reportedly responded to Owek. Daniel Muliika, his former Katikkiro, who raised concerns about the matter. Muliika, known for his critical stance against President Museveni’s government, had contacted the Kabaka seeking clarity on the issue.
The significance of the clan heads, known as Bakulu b’Ebika, within the Buganda kingdom cannot be understated. These figures hold the role of connecting the Kabaka to his subjects, each heading one of the fifty-four totems (omuziro) that make up the intricate fabric of Buganda’s cultural and social landscape. The totems are symbols of identity, and their importance is demonstrated through rituals and ceremonies that reinforce loyalty to the throne.
However, discontent has been brewing among the clan heads, with some feeling neglected by the Kabaka’s administration. The Kabaka’s failure to recognize their influence and their role in rallying clan members behind the kingdom has left many clan heads disgruntled. President Museveni, astutely identifying this dissatisfaction, seized the opportunity to court their support for his political agenda.
With the 2026 elections on the horizon, the political landscape in Uganda is shifting, and President Museveni is working to secure key alliances. The loss of support from the Baganda in the previous election to political newcomer Bobi Wine (Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu) has prompted Museveni to explore new strategies to secure his position. By leveraging the influence of the clan heads, President Museveni aims to build a strong political base in Buganda.
Amid these political maneuvers, the Kabaka’s concerns extend beyond politics. His longstanding push for greater autonomy for Buganda, known as “federo,” has yet to be realized. This, combined with the government’s attempts to alter the land tenure system, a crucial source of revenue for the kingdom, has heightened tensions between the Kabaka and the central government.
In his recent coronation celebrations, the Kabaka underscored the importance of federo for the kingdom’s authority and empowerment. He also cryptically warned against potential sabotage efforts and urged the youth to remain vigilant against such threats.
As the dust settles from the controversial meeting and the distribution of resources by President Museveni, the Buganda kingdom stands at a crossroads. The clash between the Kabaka’s desire for greater autonomy, the clan heads’ quest for recognition, and President Museveni’s political calculations has created a complex web of alliances and tensions. The coming months will reveal how these dynamics play out as Uganda inches closer to the pivotal 2026 elections.
- Mr. Stephen Kasozi Muwambi is a seasoned crime investigative writer, majoring in judicial-based stories. His two decades’ experience as a senior investigative journalist has made him one of the best to reckon on in Uganda. He can also be reached via [email protected]
- BusinessSeptember 9, 2023Expose of What Often Splits Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi and President Yoweri Museveni Tibuhaburwa in Light of the Ongoing Bataka Standoff
- BusinessAugust 29, 2023Battle4Generals: Otafiire Floors Powerful Muhwezi in First Round of Minds Fight as Museveni Calls Off Bout over Control of Lucrative Digital Number Plates Deal
- BusinessAugust 29, 2023At the Crossroads Again: Kabaka Reads Defiance, Betrayal in Bataka-Museveni Meeting as the Latter Seeks to Use the Clan Heads Ahead of 2026 Polls
- BusinessAugust 23, 2023Dubious Victory: Bizman Ntaganda`s Plot to Fool UNRA, Dfcu in Busega Govt Swamp Deal Leaks as Judge Controversially Let Him off with even a UGX24B Gift