Wednesday, July 23, 2008

2008 Buganda crisis in perspective

For starters, its now 5 days since 3 Buganda Kingdom officials were arrested and detained by state for alledged terrorism amongst other crimes. The tabloids in Kampala today carried a statement from none other than afande Tinye, the army general who oversaw the infamous "operation north" in 1991 during whih period there was a media blackout in northern Uganda.

However, thats a story for another day.

Today Lwani puts the 2008 Buganda crisis in perspective. Flashback to 1966.....The issue of the 'lost counties' of Buyaga, Buwekula and Bugangaizi became a hot issue and a referendum was held in those counties, to resolve it.The Kabaka and the Lukiiko opposed this referendum and tried to organize a boycott against it but to no avail. This created tension between Obote and the Mengo establishment. Especially when the Kabaka refused to sign the instruments transferring the two counties of Buyaga and Bugangaizi, which opted to return to Bunyoro. Apparently the Kabaka had even gone ahead to mobilize an armed resistance against the UPC led government. Hell broke loose, Idi Amin led troops and attacked Lubiri, forcing the Kabaka to scamper for his life. In effect, a marraige of convinience, depicted in te photo below, came to a sad and infamous end. UPC appaently acted in favour of a republic and not a monarchy.

Fast forward to the future....2008 today, NRM-O in power, a general in state house, the Kabaka without 3 of his ministers whose where-abouts and wellbeing remain a matter of speculation. Inevitably the two centres of power, one national/superior and the other tribal/subordinate are at the cross roads. However, nobody knows what exactly went wrong. A marriage that has lasted over a decade and a half is in a balance. On July 31st 1993, Mutebi was crowned as Kabaka in a colourful ceremony, and in the eyes of many....the NRM had re-instated the Kabakaship.

Happier times followed with the Kabaka wedding lady Sylvia, and there was no doubt that all was well. The cultural institution was enjoying the affection of the national institution.

Today, a debate on land and the land ammendment act has become so passionate and tribal punctuated by accusations, counter accusations and suspicion whose end result is uncertainity. As the three Buganda ministers remain in detention, lets remember that the stick which is used to whip your co-wife will most lkely be the very stick that will be used to lash u. Could we be witnessing the 2008 Buganda crisis unfolding or even surpassing the much misunderstood and distorted 1966 Buganda crisis? I leave it to you to decipher.

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