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Umukuuka dispute: Nandala opposes Bugisu parliamentary caucus request to gazette Mudoma

Nathan Nandala Mafabi, the Budadiri West Member of Parliament

Mbale, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT Nathan Nandala Mafabi, the Budadiri West Member of Parliament has distanced himself from the decision by the Bugisu Parliamentary caucus asking the Gender and Cultural Affairs Minister to gazette Jude Mike Mudoma as the new Bamasaba cultural leader.   

This comes almost a week after Ignatius Mudimi Wamakuyu, the Chairperson of the Bugisu Parliamentary Caucus and Elgon County MP wrote to the Gender and Cultural Affairs Minister indicating that the caucus had resolved to have Mudoma gazetted as the new cultural leader of the Bamasaaba. 

However, Nandala says that Mudimi’s letter represents his personal opinion and not that of the Bugisu Parliamentary caucus. In his April 12th, 2021 letter Nandala explains that the caucus has never met on the matter and passed any resolution as claimed by Mudimi.   

“I have read and understood your letter and that of Hon. Mudimi. While I appreciate the letter from you, Hon. Minister that seeks to calm down the conflicts in Inzu Ya Masaaba I disagree with Hon. Mudimi. I strongly disagree with Hon. Mudimi trying to get involved in imposing Umukuka on Bamasaaba, this role is given to delegates of Inzu ya Masaaba,” Nandala’s letter reads in part.

He also faults a meeting that was convened by the Peace Mutuuzo, the Gender and Cultural Affairs State Minister last month to try and resolve the impasse over the election of Jude Mike Wagabyalire and Jude Mike Mudoma to replace the late Umukuuka, Bob Mushikor.   The meeting comprised district Chairpersons from Bugisu, some MPs and Resident city Commissioners among others.

The meeting resolved to have Mudoma gazetted as the rightly elected leader of the Bamasaaba, which drew the fury of several Bamasaba. Last week, the Gender, Labour and Social Development Minister, Frank Tumwebaze wrote to the warring factions declining to gazete any of the two contested leaders until the matter is resolved. According to Nandala, Mutuzo’s meeting was wrongly constituted since it didn’t involve the right people, the delegates of Inzu Ya Masaaba.

Mudimi couldn’t be reached on his known mobile number for comment. However, the Budadir East MP Vincent Weboya told Uganda Radio Network that Mudimi’s position is the position of the majority of MPs from the region. He says that the members were consulted and that is what they are pursuing for the good of the Bamasaaba. 

On Saturday last week, Energy Minister Mary Goreti Kitutu told mourners at a burial in Bukiabi Sub-county, Namisindwa District that she had brought the issue of the cultural leader to the attention of President, Yoweri Museveni for redress.  

She said that she had also asked Mutuzo to call delegates from Kenya and Uganda and organize fresh elections to sort out the impasse. The disagreements in Inzu Lya Masaba started before the death of Bob Mushikori in January.

In October, Jude Mike Mudoma was elected as the Umukuka III by a faction led by the embattled speaker of Inzu Ya Masaba, Nelson Wedaira.  In March, members of the cultural council elected John Amram Wagabyalile as the new cultural leaders on grounds that Mudoma was elected illegally.

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