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Top 10 Ugandan Women To Watch In The Year 2023

The year 2022 is less than 100hrs to come to an end. It however, ends with many issues that have been resolved and others still pending. Most of these are involving our dear women leaders and as such, are carrying on with their pending assignments. This list therefore, tries to dig into these women of influence and why we should watch their actions in the coming year. We should also remember that Gen. Yoweri Museveni is already in Rwakitura for a retreat. Rwakitura is his tactical place to study more closely his government and also where due, make changes here and there. Here we go!

Robinah Nabbanja

When he was appointing her PM, president Museveni told Nabbanja to do two things. Fight thieves and also mobilize for him. Museveni told Nabbanja that not even a member of his family should claim that he (Museveni) ‘has sent me’ to do this or that. The president even told Nabbanja that in case such a situation arose, she ought to call him directly on a personal line he gave her. This is why Nabbanja is everywhere unlike former premiers whose work was to sit in offices!


“I have tried these men but I have not achieved much. They are always in their offices. They don’t go to the ground. Please make a difference” Museveni told Nabbanja according to Inspectors.
The woman from Kakumiro rocked the year 2022 when she went to Kasese to supervise distribution of blankets to flood victims. Nabbanja alias ‘Omuvubi’ shocked the world when she turned on her OPM staff and accused them of procuring fake blankets. She refused to distribute them!


In Kampala; Inspectors said, she recently found out that one of the former security ministers (names withheld) had secretly hired out military guards to several tycoons in the city and that, the richmen were allegedly paying directly to the minister for those guards.
We’re told Nabbanja recently through CMI boys got wind of this and summoned the tycoons one by one and assured them that security was free of charge and had to be officially done. The tycoons we’re told that if anyone wants security, he or she officially informs government which assesses the threats and grant security to that businessman free of charge. We’re told up to now, the tycoons are singing Nabbanja’s name after saving them from huge payments that were being done in the name of guarding them.


Still in Kampala, there was a debate on how the Entebbe road works would be executed and yet the president also uses the same route to Entebbe. Somehow, it appeared that the head of state could use the northern bypass enroute to Entebbe. However, the challenge was the huge numbers of vendors around Kaleerwe market and Bwaise round about. The vendors here do their business by the roadside and or in the middle of the road. Inspectors said there was worry that if these people were all left on the road, even opposition activists would infiltrate them in future and cause insecurity. A plan to reduce them was allegedly hatched.


‘Omuvubi’ Nabbanja was there to execute the mission for the bigman. She reportedly sneaked into the market during the night and religiously started paying off the vendors and that, whoever got his share, he or she was asked to find another place. To ensure the vendors complied, those who were paid had their national IDs photocopied for easy tracking. This is how these people were smartly removed from Kaleerwe making it decongested and therefore passable by the president. Other issues Nabbanja has handled include the Nyege Nyege festival which appeared to be a wrestle between speaker of Parliament and the executive. So acidic she has been this year that the same Musafiiri Nabbanja tackled the corruption in the judiciary after she intervened in a land wrangle where the Court was badly exposed as being insensitive to poor people’s interests on land. The boldness of Nabbanja forced CJ Owiny Alphonse Dollo to come out and save his face although Nabbanja had already carried the public opinion against judiciary!

Uzeiye Hadijah Namyalo

She’s the lady heading the Office of the NRM National Chairman (ONC) at Kyambogo. She’s also an SPA on political affairs and above all, she’s the National Cordinator of the Bazzukulu movement. She’s currently in the news for spearheading the ‘Jjajja Omalako Tova Ku Main ” campaign seeking to force Jjajja Museveni to stand again in 2026 and beyond.
A smooth operator, Uzeiye is a soft spoken Muslim black lady with a huge following among the Bazzukulu or youths. She has so far started eating into opposition strongholds mainly in Buganda and Busoga.


Uzeiye has employed a down to earth approach to politics by penetrating mainly the ghetto camps where she freely mingles with the groups and by close of business, she leaves when most of them have been recruited into the Bazzukulu movement and Jjajja Omalako Tova Ku Main campaign. She has many youths and women including bouncers, boxers, tax drivers, food vendors, Nsenene dealers, veterans among others who a few days ago, even formed an NRM National Mobile Taskforce and was launched by Uzeiye herself at Nakivubo Blue Primary School. Just last week, she handed over Shs5m to Kamwokya Boxing Clubs which included some of the most dangerous groups that were involved in staging protests, burning tyres etc. She has also penetrated Kosokoso ghettos! She operates independent of the NRM secretariat and gets her directives straight from the president making her one of the most powerful ladies to watch in the coming year 2023!

Anita Among

The speaker of Parliament can’t miss on this list. She has dominated this year especially after she overwhelmingly scooped the position of speaker when Jacob Oulanyah died. She however, stocked a lot on her plate towards the end of this year among which includes her running battles with the opposition mainly Francis Zzaake and now state minister for housing Persis Namuganza. The duo are ending this year with an unresolved feud which is threatening to explode into a full fledged war. Already, Namuganza ends the year with an ugly censure motion hovering over her head and in retaliation, the Bukono county MP has vowed to expose the speaker’s ‘dark’ side. Interestingly, both ladies are favored by Museveni and it’s not clear between the two whom he will tell to apologize to the other for the sake of harmony. We wait to see this in 2023!

Jessica Alupo

The woman MP for Katakwi is also the vice president. She made history this year when she represented the president at the recent UN general assembly making her the first VP to have represented the president at that level. She has also represented him on AU Summit meetings.
Back home, Alupo is leading the executive group rallying the masses to support Museveni in 2026. So determined to push him back to state house that the lady has even booked the president to raid Teso on Friday and assure them that the man with a round hat is still around in 2026 and beyond. She launched the struggle alongside ministers Kahinda Otafiire and Vicent Ssempijja in Mitooma district. How she plans to pursue this campaign in the coming year amid massive infighting in the ruling party, only time will tell!

Shamim Malende

She’s currently down with a strange ailment. Shamim is known by her stage name ‘pipo pawa’ lawyer. She has been almost to every court in the land defending supporters of NUP who have been arrested by security agencies. She’s also currently in court fighting for the freedom of two legislators Allan Ssewanyana and Muhammad Sseggirinya who have been on remand for now almost a year. Her car during one of the court hearings in Masaka was allegedly deflated by unknown people but she carried on with her work. She’s currently in Nairobi hospital for specialized treatment following a strange ailment that ravaged her bootyful body.

Eng. Ziria Waako Tibalwa

She’s the lady behind Uganda’s success stories in the energy sector. The CEO of Electricity Regulatory Authority (ERA) since 2018, Ziria crowns 2022 with another accolade to the country after her entity was a fortnight ago voted the best to host the EA regional Electricity Regulatory body. For the past four years running, ERA under her, has also scooped the continental Electricity Regulatory Index award conducted by the African Development Bank.
With 2023 now with us, many Ugandans await for further achievements. She however, crowns the year with sadness as some individuals have embarked on erasing the successes so far gained in the electricity sector by vandalizing the infrastructure. How this is going to be handled, is still an issue to many although president Museveni has promised to intervene.

Lillian Ikulumet

She’s a former scribe working with one of the local dailies. An Itesot by tribe from Kumi district, Ikulumet currently stays in Munich Germany. This year, the NRM faced widespread condemnation from the international community over issues of gross human rights violations. So serious the matter was that, the ruling party officials feared to face the European union parliament to explain government’s side of the story. It took the courage of this soft-spoken Itesot to do damage control for the president and his government. The NRM leaders gave her government’s position on the matter and she boldly interfaced with the EU parliament committee in human rights. This is how the pressure somehow reduced. An orphan doing Museveni’s work even without any official appointment either as a special envoy for the president in Europe, Ikulumet went ahead and organised the first ever NRM Diaspora convention in Europe which took place in November in Munich amid sabotage by anti-Museveni groups.
She remains steadfast in doing Museveni’s work even as she is not supported by the system to ease her work. Actually, some voices in security suggest that the president needs to talk to this gal for a private engagement with her so that she can do more work for him in the troublesome European nations undercover but officially.

Mariam Wangadya

Issues of human rights have always rung a bell in the heads of many Ugandans. From political to social human rights violations, the country has seen more complaints on this matter than answers in the year 2022.
The Uganda Human Rights Commission headed by Wangadya is the country’s watchdog on human rights. It’s always the first point of call by many whose rights have allegedly been violated. The president recently beefed up this Commission by appointing three new Commissioners including Steven Basaliza, Omara Apita Lameck and Simeo Nsubuga. They assumed office last week.


2022 has been dominated by mainly claims of abductions by security agencies against opposition NUP supporters and torture. There’s also a high degree of intolerance among political actors. Other issues of concern have been land evictions. The trend seems to continue and the Commission is now looked at as the only institution to bridge the gap between the complainants and those involved. With 2023 likely to be politically hyperactive, the Wangadya commission according to Inspectors is an entity to watch in all spheres of life!

Barbie Kyagulanyi

She’s the wife to NUP principal Robert Kyagulanyi alias Bobi Wine. Recently, a rumor circulated on social media claiming that her hubby was nursing a secret affair with another lady abroad. Barbie however, remained steadfast. As it turned out, the alleged lady was found to be actually Bobi’s relative since she belongs to the same clan as Bobi’s mother (Ndiga clan). In effect, those who claimed she was his ‘side ddiisi’, implied that Bobi committed incest since the babe is his mother! In Buganda where Bobi belongs, a son cannot marry from his mother’s clan.
This rumor continues to do rounds but Barbie hasn’t been moved. She has also managed to keep her family together throughout 2022 and we wait to see how she wades through 2023!

Persis Namuganza

The Bukono county MP seems to have an allergy when it comes to the position of speaker. When Rebecca Kadaga was in that position, she launched the onslaught against her and she finally won the battle. She tried to dislodge Kadaga from CEC but here, the lady from Kamuli defeated her. With Kadaga now out of the way (and by the way, they are now close pals with Kadaga), here comes Anita Among as speaker! The two ladies are now nursing a serious battle with each working to dislodge the other from the position they both hold. We end the year with Namuganza already on firing line although her backers are also said to be laying an ambush to strike back. How they are going to treat themselves in 2023, we all watch the space!

Florence Mutyabule

She’s the SPA Busoga sub-region in charge of poverty alleviation. Museveni has already renewed her contract which shows the kind of interest he attaches on her office and work.
She has been in every district of Busoga including the Islands of Sigulu in Namayingo district. However, even as she is doing this work, her office is not supported with a single coin in form of a budget. This therefore, makes her work difficult and yet Busoga according to Inspectors in NRM needs special attention. Economically, the area is poverty-stricken while politically, it’s swinging between opposition NUP and NRM. In fact, in the last presidential election, NUP badly beat NRM candidate Museveni. How Museveni intends to support her office this new year 2023 is something every Musoga is waiting to see!

Rebecca Amuge Otengo

She’s Uganda’s ambassador to Ethiopia and also the country’s Permanent Representative to African Union, UNECA and IGAD.
Museveni himself is among the most respected leaders on the continent. Therefore, his words of wisdom and counsel are always channeled through Otengo who’s his gate keeper at the AU. She has helped diffuse several tensions between Uganda and some countries on the continent and continues to do more lobbying for the country at AU level. In fact, every time there are elections within the AU arrangement, it’s Otengo who ensures that Uganda and her close allies grab what they want. She for example fought hard to have Uganda scoop a position on the AU Peace and Security Council and beginning this month of January, the AU Commission has appointed Uganda to head the PSC after Senegal chickened out. We wait to see what 2023 brings for Uganda through Otengo!
Watch out for the 2022 female flops of the year!

Tags : Barbie KyagulanyiEng. Ziria Waako TibalwaFlorence MutyabuleLillian IkulumetNRMNUPPersis NamuganzaRebecca Amuge OtengoShamim Malembe
HENRY MULINDWA

The author HENRY MULINDWA

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