Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The Uganda Muslim Supreme Council (UMSC) has appointed Mohammad Ali Aluma as the Acting Secretary General.
Mohammad Ali Aluma who is the substantive head of Social Services takes over from Ramadhan Mugalu whose contract expired.
He was appointed on 5th May 2023 following a Joint Session Committee comprising of the Executive Committee and Majlis Al Ulama Committee-College of Eminent Sheikhs, which is the second most top organ of the council. He shall serve for the next three months from the day of appointment.
For more than a month, UMSC planned to fill the position of the Secretary General, although the now former office bearer, Mugalu protested the move claiming that he still had a running contract with the Muslim body.
Knowing Mugalu’s contentions, on 1st April 2023, members of the joint session Committee led by the Council’s National Chairman Dr. Muhammad Lubega Kisambira constituted a five member team led by Counsel Musa Kabega to investigate the validity of Mugalu’s said contract and present a report in the subsequent meeting held Friday.
However, as preparations for the joint session held Friday geared up, Mugalu through his lawyers of Generis Advocates wrote to the UMSC National Chairman seeking to block what they termed as an ill-motivated process intended to be carried out to affect the structures of the Supreme Muslim body in Uganda. In the letter dated 3rd May 2023, Mugalu argued that he had been nominated to the position on 23rd January 2016 and confirmed by the general assembly on 29th November 2016.
“Therefore, to discuss the tenure of the Secretary General, it (is) the role of the General Assembly which approved him and with UMSC precedent. We advise you to convene for a General Assembly Meeting as per UMSC Constitution to discuss the tenure of the Secretary General; otherwise you will be in breach and violation of UMSC Constitution in case you go ahead with the Joint Session Meeting with the Agenda item on board as presented. Fore warned, is fore armed” read the letter from Mugalu’s lawyers.
In response, UMSC through their lawyers from Makmot Kibwanga and Company Advocates stated that they would proceed with the planned meeting and that they had no agenda to discuss the tenure of any officer with a running contract.
“In the premise, our clients are steadfast to conduct the joint session meeting as called and will be expecting your client -Dr Mugalu-to attend but in an event he elects to abscond then our clients will deal with the situation in the most appropriate way” read part of the letter dated 4th May 2023.
Now in a statement issued by the Spokesperson of UMSC, Ashraf Zziwa, during the joint session on Friday, the committee which was constituted in April to investigate Mugalu’s claims of having a running contract, presented a nine page report in which it was reported that Mugalu’s contract had long expired following his nomination and appointment by a similar organ on January 21st 2015.
“Counsel Dr. Adam Rajab Makmot Kibwanga read the report to the attentive members who later deliberated the findings and resolved to appoint an acting Secretary General pending the election of a substantive office holder within 3 months. Haj Muhamood Kateregga and Muhammad Ali Aluma who took the day were nominated for the position” read the statement in part
Meanwhile, at the same meeting, ten newly appointed Regional representatives to the Property & Endowment under chairmanship of Counsel Mugaino Abubakar and his Deputy Haj Jamada Luuta Musoke were sworn in.
Others sworn in were the 21 members of the Muslim Arbitration & Conciliation Committee under Sheikh Abdu Obeid Kamulegeya and Sheikh Luutu Sulaiman Wandera.
In his speech, His Eminence Sheikh Shaban Ramadhan Mubaje the Mufti of Uganda described the newly amended UMSC Constitution as a bitter pill, which aims at curing administrative illnesses that had affected the well being of the Council.
“I am really delighted that the Constitution is being implemented. So the noise made in public by disgruntled individuals is because they found themselves lacking the necessary academic qualifications for their desired Council positions,” Sheikh Mubaje remarked.
He furthered urged the Members of the Property & Endowment Trust to execute their duties diligently without fear or favour adding that their appointment is meant to save the Mufti’s Office because whatever has been going wrong concerning Muslim property in the past, the blame has always been put squarely on him.
In attendance were His Eminence Sheikh Abdallah Ibrahim Ssemambo Tamusuza, the Deputy Mufti of Uganda and His Eminence Sheikh Muhammad Ali Waiswa, the 2nd Deputy Mufti