WHAT CATHOLIC LEADERS TOLD GEN. MUSEVENI’S MAN IN YESTERDAY’S MEETING
BY JOHN OKELLO LAPOK
Yesterday Sunday, two secret meetings took place in Sironko district. It involved leaders from the Catholic Church and also leaders from the Pentecostal churches/Balokole from across the district and a top NRM leader Barrister Peter Magomu Mashate. The meetings took place at Bunabonyo village, Bugusege sub-county and at Kanalwa Catholic Parish Nakiwondwe in Budadiri West. The Catholic meeting was led by Rev. Fr. Wandera John while the Pentecostals were led by Bp. Moses Kadoli, Bp. Nakayi Misaach and Bp. Andrew Muduli.
The highly secretive meetings attended by carefully selected clergies highlighted a number of issues affecting the fortunes of Gen. Yoweri Museveni and his NRM people in Budariri west and Sironko district for that matter.
A fragment from those two meetings indicates that the Catholics are nursing a broken heart towards President Museveni. Apparently, the head of state seems to have less attention to the Catholic’s cause, but instead hobnobs with the Protestants in the area.
“While we are the majority, we wonder why we’re marginalized. For example, fundraisings have been carried out at Buhugu Diocese [Church of Uganda] where H.E the president has ever attended. But for us, not even a single one has he ever graced” said the Catholic leaders adding that ‘we’re also thirsty for that. We request you [Barrister Peter Magomu Mashate] to convey our desire to the president so that he can also grace our functions”
Inspectors said that the Catholics also said that they have a number of development projects including a SACCO where they want the General from Rwakitura to put some ‘kawogo’ so that they can also use the money to transform their lives. To crown this meeting, the Catholic leaders passed two important resolutions one thanking Barrister Mashate for his support towards education in Sironko. They particularly thanked him for giving out scholastic materials to all learners in Sironko district. The other resolution was for the barrister to help them ‘liberate’ Budadiri west from the jaws of FDC SG Nathan Nandala Mafabi who has ruled this constituency 25years ago.
As for the Balokole meeting at Bunabonyo village, it also according to inspectors expressed sadness that Balokole in Sironko are being marginalized. The leaders said that even as the First Family professes Balokoleism, some individuals in the district continue to despise those who subscribe to this religion referring to them as thieves. They claimed that there is even a radio program on one of the local stations where hate speech against them is always played.
“We find this arrogance very disturbing” they claimed according to inspectors. The group totaling about 120 crowned the meeting by asking Mashate to consider coming to stand in Budadiri West in 2026 and also asked him to continue working with President Museveni.
“We know you’re a member of NRM. We believe if you come, you can easily walk into the corridors of power and this will end our marginalization” the leaders said. The group is now organizing a 3-day district women’s conference mid this month where they want Mashate to officiate.
Demographically according to our inspectors, Catholics form 55% of the total population in Sironko, followed by Protestants [25%], Moslems [10%] and Balokole 10%. Politically, NRM has been struggling in Sironko district with opposition FDC running the show. In 2011, the entire district was painted blue from top to Local Council 1 positions, thanks to Nandala Mafabi who has been the political kingmaker in the district. So powerful he was that; he thumped Museveni’s well-backed former minister for Presidency Dr. Beatrice Mukaye Wabudeya ending her political career. Since then, Nandala has enjoyed a free ride to date although Gen. Museveni has now found a dangerous challenger to him in the names of Barrister Peter Magomu Mashate. It is now suggested that some in Nandala’s camp suggest that he should consider backing one of his aides who is a reverend to come and help save the situation caused by Mashate entry. Watch this space!!