By Ahmed Kateregga Musaazi
MASAKA-UGANDA/NEWSDAY: One day in the 1980s, the Military Council was called to refute press reports quoting the National Resistance Movement/Army Chief Administrator, Haji Moses Kigongo as saying that if his army wanted, it could capture Gulu town, now a city. The Okello Junta said that that was not possible.
By then NRM/NRA had set up an interim Government Kasese with NRM Second Vice Chairman Haji Moses Kigongo as its Chief Administrator. He chaired a cabinet of commissioners and their permanent secretary was Jacob Asiimwe. Their superior was the Interim Chairperson and Chairman NRA High Command Yoweri Museveni after the fall of the chairman and former President Yusuf Lule in January 1985.
After the capture of state power, Museveni was elected Chairman of NRM and National Resistance Council, which was the interim parliament, and Kigongo was elected Vice Chairperson NRM, NRC with Jacob Asiimwe as the Administrative Secretary at the NRM Secretariat.
This is the group that was retired from NRA now Uganda People’s Defense Forces by President Yoweri Museveni last Thursday August 5th at State House Entebbe. It included Haji Kigongo and Jacob Asiimwe who retired as Brig. Generals, former NRM Vice Chairperson Buganda Region and now Senior presidential Advisor Maj. Alhaji Abdul Naduli, Senior Presidential Assistant on Land matters Maj. Gertrude Nnannyunja Njuba, former Minister Maj.Hajjati Janati Baunzi Mukwaya, Presidential Special Assistant Al Haji Maj. Abdul Hafez Mukwaaya, former ambassador Maj. Katenta Apuuli, Maj.Sulaimani Sserunjoji, long time Deputy RCC Maj. John Kaddu, Maj.Fred Ntege and Maj.Ronald Magezi.
Other significant retirees are FRONASA Historical, led by former Deputy Chief of Defence Forces Gen. Ivan Koreta, who joined FRONASA in 1977 and trained in Mozambique with Gen. Salim Saleh, the late Gen. Fred Rwigyema, the late Mule Muwanga, Maj. Gen.Chef Ali, Maj. Gen. Innocent George Oula among others.
Then Lt. Gen Pecos Kutesa, Gen. Jim Besigye Owesigyire, Maj.Gen.Ambassador Robert Rusoke, Maj. Gen. Fred Mugisha, Maj. Gen. Christopher Murema Kazoora, Maj.Gen.Moses Waddimba Ssentongo,, Brig.Gen. Shaban Moses Lukyamuzi, Brig. John Kasaija and others.
IN sowing the mustard seed, President Museveni recalls that while the Defence Minister under the UNLF Government in 1979, a young business man, Kamala came to him asking for military training to fight lawlessness that was in Kampala. He was impressed and although the President does not remember well his role in Uganda Patriotic Movement during in 1980 general elections (where Haji Kigongo is said to have been one of the financiers of the young party), he remembers how they linked up again in Luwero after Kabamba attack on February 6th and he heard his voice on BBC calling upon Ugandans to join in the liberation struggle, and he assigned him to set up National Resistance Council and Resistance Council and Committees.
Nadduli is more known in controversies and speaking his mind especially when it is about how he negotiated with the President on EBYAFFE (Buganda Kingdom issues) as early as 1981 and whenever there is a stalemate between Buganda and Central Government he recalls the “kasaka” talks. Even when direct talks between Amama Mbabazi and Ruhakana Rugunda on one hand and Joseph Muwanyamuli on the other failed, Naduli went to Moroto where he met Museveni and they struck the Regional Government deal where Buganda and other regional governments were restored as they were under 1962 constitution except with no power to directly levy taxes . Unfortunately, the clique hates Nadduli with a passion.
So part of the group that was retired last week is very historical and it is expected to play core roles in civilian life as many of them are active politicians, businessmen and farmers. We wish them well.
Haji Ahmed Kateregga Musaazi is a veteran journalist and Deputy Resident City Commissioner Masaka City.
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