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Museveni meets Muslim leaders over reconciliation efforts

President Museveni talks to Muslim leaders led by Mufuti Shaban Mubajje (C) after a meeting at Entebbe. PPU photo

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | President Yoweri Museveni met with a group of Muslim leaders at State House Entebbe to report to him about their success in the reconciliation efforts that started over five years ago.

Among them were leaders from Old Kampala, Nakasero and former leaders from Kibuli. The delegation headed by the Mufti of Uganda, Sheikh Shaban Ramathan Mubaje was at State House to brief the President about an agreement reached between the factions and uniting as one body.

According to Sheikh Mubaje, they had already signed a Unity Agreement between the Uganda Muslim Supreme Council (UMSC), the Kibuli group and the Nakasero group to unite as one body following years of disagreement between the various factions, sparked by the sale of Muslim properties to businessman Drake Lubega.

“We have sat down on both sides to forge a way of uniting and talking to each other. We now confirm that we have reconciled and that’s why we are here all together to inform you of this development. We signed a document agreeing to unite. We even left Old Kampala together. We are now together as the Uganda Muslim community,” Sheikh Mubaje said.

He revealed that as they plan a Constitutional review, at the same time they are organizing for the upcoming general assembly that will lead to elections of new leaders.

President Museveni commended the Muslim groups for this action and noted that different people have different talents and abilities which are useful only when they come together. He added that he was happy that the leaders were coming together because of the National Resistance Movement, since time immemorial they have been preaching unity among the people.

“…We as NRM discovered a long time ago that unity is strength. We have always preached against disunity,” Museveni said and added that in the eight years he spent fighting Amin, he was helped by Muslims like Abbas Kibazo of Kibuli, and Zubair Bakali, among others. “So, uniting with all groups including Muslims helped us win because unity is power,” Museveni added.

Responding to the Muslim leaders’ appreciation for the appointments of Muslims in key Government positions, the President said: “For us, we are looking for good people from wherever they are found.” He promised to support upcoming activities of Muslims that include the Annual General Assembly (AGM) where they will elect new leaders and collect ideas from around the country for their Constitutional review process.

Museveni asked the Muslims to actualize the idea of constructing a seminary that will help to train Muslim leaders here in Uganda. Mufti Mubaje commended him for his tireless efforts to unite all Muslims in Uganda which has in the end yielded good results.

Among those who met Museveni include; Sheikh Obeid Kamulegeya, former head of sheikhs at Kibuli, Sheikh Muhammed Yunusu Kamoga, the head of the Tabliqs,  Sheikh Muhamood Kibaate, former deputy Supreme mufti, Sheikh Kasule Ndirangwa, former Supreme Mufti, and Sheikh Hamid Umar Kateregga.

Others were Hajji Ramanthan Mugalu, the secretary-general of the Uganda Muslim Supreme Council, Hajji Faruk Kamulegeya and Masaba Muhamood.

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