In a politically charged move, Buganda’s revered monarch, His Majesty Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II, has reignited the flames of contention between his kingdom and President Gen Yoweri Museveni’s administration. During the recent coronation anniversary celebrations, the Kabaka publicly expressed his disappointment over Museveni’s failure to fulfill a longstanding promise – granting Buganda its cherished federo system of governance.
The timing of Kabaka’s bold reminder carries profound implications, casting a shadow on Museveni’s aspirations for the upcoming 2026 general elections. With the 2026 election road map freshly issued by Justice Simon Byabakama Mugenyi, the Kabaka’s lamentations reverberate through the political landscape, potentially influencing the course of the impending electoral battle.
The Kabaka’s remarks, delivered just three years before the pivotal election, highlight the unresolved tensions between Buganda and the central government. This comes as President Museveni, still reeling from the unexpected defeat inflicted upon him by political newcomer Bobi Wine in the 2021 elections, strives to regain his political footing in the Buganda region.
President Museveni’s strategic maneuvers to counter the rising influence of Bobi Wine and his National Unity Platform (NUP) party have been multifaceted. Beyond conventional political tactics, Museveni has employed extrajudicial means to undermine NUP’s growth, illustrating the heightened stakes in this political power struggle.
Kabaka Mutebi’s rekindled demand for federo resonates deeply among his subjects, whose historical and cultural attachment to the governance system runs strong. The Kabaka’s call has been seized upon by NUP’s finance shadow minister, Muwanga Kivumbi, who seeks to leverage the sentiment to rally Baganda against Museveni’s regime.
Kivumbi plans to launch a covert campaign within Buganda, capitalizing on the Kabaka’s message to cultivate further discontent towards Museveni and his National Resistance Movement (NRM) party. By amplifying the call for federo, Kivumbi aims to fuel resentment among Baganda well in advance of the 2026 elections.
The Kabaka’s history of using ceremonial occasions to challenge Museveni underscores the depth of their discord. During a previous coronation, the Kabaka vehemently criticized Museveni’s attempts to alter the land tenure system, emphasizing the shared sacrifice of Buganda during the turbulent times that preceded Museveni’s rise to power.
Although Museveni managed to temporarily mend fences through a high-profile reconciliation meeting and a financial gesture, the scars of mistrust lingered. The Kabaka’s recent cryptic warning about unspecified detractors seeking to undermine Buganda’s interests further underscores the rift between the kingdom and the central government. The Kabaka’s influence over his subjects cannot be understated. His words hold significant sway over the hearts and minds of the Baganda people, potentially shaping the outcome of the 2026 elections in this critical region.
As the 2026 election draws near, the question on everyone’s mind is whether the Kabaka’s renewed push for federo will erode Museveni’s support base in Buganda. The stage is set for a tense political showdown, with Museveni’s past failures and the Kabaka’s resolute advocacy potentially tilting the balance of power in this dynamic and ever-evolving political landscape.
- 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