The NRM Party Secretary-General accompanied by the secretariat senior official; EC Chairperson Dr Tanga Odoi, Deputy National Treasurer Hon. Jacqueline Kyatuheire, Hon Emmanuel Lumala Dombo, the party’s Director for Communications & PR and Director for Mobilisation, Hon. Rosemary Seninde, spent this week in the Kigezi sub-region where they met and interacted with party leaders to set the tone for party mobilization, sensitization and assessment of salient issues in the area and also appreciate the input is made by the district leadership.
The week-long working tour began with a courtesy visit to the home of the late former Governor of Bank of Uganda Prof Emmanuel Tumusiime Mutebile in Kabale District to commiserate with the family.
After a long day of community mobilization in the Kigezi districts of Kabale and Rubanda, the Secretary-General on Tuesday joined the people of Ruhija sub-county and town council in Rubanda district to commemorate International Women’s Day at the function held at Ruhija tourism sector headquarters in Bwindi-Mgahinga wildlife conservation centre.
In his message, the SG called on all the stakeholders to ensure that women are given all the deserved respect to enabling them to participate in the socio-economic transformation of Uganda.
“I implored the people of Kigezi to build on the government policy of women emancipation through affirmative action and empower their women,” he said.
He thanked the people of Kabale and Rubanda for supporting Museveni and NRM, promising them to lobby for the tarmacking of tourism roads leading to Mgahinga and Bwindi game parks for easy movement and transportation of their merchandise.
Following his maiden visit to the Bwindi-Mgahinga wildlife conservation centre, Todwong hailed the role the tourism sector has played towards the development of Uganda. He urged community members to preserve the flora and fauna for the sustainability of the sector for more revenue generation. He called upon Ugandans and international tourists to visit this endowed part of Uganda to appreciate the beauty of nature.
The SG on Wednesday went to Kisoro where he met NRM district leaders. While in Kisoro, the SG asked party leaders to prioritize issues affecting people, especially high poverty levels. He said that the government has been running many intervention programs to eradicate poverty, asking leaders to help people benefit from these interventions.
“There are very many government development intervention programs well-articulated in our manifesto that the party leaders in the districts must explain to our people,” he said, adding, “Given that we are the party in power, every leader should work towards implementing our manifesto,” he said urging leaders to keenly monitor the manifesto implementation process.
He blamed the party’s poor performance in some areas on lack of unity and cohesion among leaders, as in the case of Kisoro district council speaker and councillors, calling for total reconciliation and amicable settlement of disputes.
“The success of a party is premised on total unity and coherence among its leaders. When we get differences, we sit as a family and reconcile. When we go through our party internal elections and we don’t reconcile after tearing each other apart, we tend to create an environment that our opponents take advantage of,” Todwong emphasized.
As part of border post-performance assessment in the wake of the covid-19 pandemic, the delegation, accompanied by Kisoro district woman representative in parliament and State Minister for Youth and Children Hon. Sarah Mateke Nyirabashitsi, Resident District Commissioner Kisoro, Captain Peter Mugisha visited Bunagana, Uganda-DRC border post and Kyanika, a border post of Uganda and Rwanda, both found in Kisoro district in South-western Uganda.
Among other establish challenges faced by the people who carry out cross border activities is the high cost of the covid-19 test and delay of cargo, especially at the Uganda-Rwanda border post of Kyanika which was opened to traders barely a week ago. However, the secretary-general Rt. Hon. Richard Todwong promised to refer the matter to the relevant authorities for an immediate remedy.
“It is our first time to visit you here, and, unfortunately, you have these challenges. I promise that I will take your concerns to the relevant authorities and the lasting solution will be found,” Todwong promised.
In Kanungu district, the delegation was received by the NRM vice chairperson for the western region who is also Minister for Information, Communication, Technology and National Guidance, Hon Chris Baryomunsi. Addressing the party structures at Kanungu District headquarters, Todwong promised the members that the priority will be on tarmacking the dusty murram roads in the district to ease the movement of people in the area.
The NRM secretariat delegation was later led by Hon Chris Baryomunsi to Rushorooza Seed School in Kihihi sub-county, Kinkizi West constituency, Kanungu district where the Secretary-General officiated at the function organized by district leaders to mark 36 years of NRM in power.
In his remarks, the SG rooted for district development mobilization, saying that “As a political teacher, I must tell you that a leader should understand what the society needs. People need peace and security, they need programs that elevate their conditions,” he noted, adding, “Leaders need to help people to benefit in government poverty eradication programs.”
The Central Executive Committee Chairperson for Western Region who is also Kinkizi East Member of Parliament, Hon. Chris Baryomunsi promised to work with the secretary-general to solve the issues affecting the people of Kanungu. He however decried division among religious leaders in some parts of the district that stall development.
The 5-day strategic engagements with leaders which started on Monday in the Kigezi sub-region ended on Friday in Sheema district where the SG, accompanied by the Deputy National Treasurer Hon Jacqueline Kyatuheire, Dr Tanga Odoi the Party’s EC Chairperson, Hon Rosemary Nansubuga Sseninde (Director for Mobilization) and the Party’s Director for Information and PR, Hon Emmanuel Lumala Dombo, officiated at the Sheema Municipality council meeting organized by the area Member of Parliament, Hon Dicksons Kateshumbwa at Sheema Municipal council headquarters, Sheema district. The SG here asked leaders to bury hatchets and serve people, saying that, skirmishes and contradictions among leaders have cost them valuable time which would be spent on more productive activities.
“I came to realize that ever since the parliamentary elections ended, we have spent a lot of time bickering because of our interests. Given that we are many and our interests are very competitive, we have kept on fighting each other. But I urge you to do away with petty politics,” Todwong said.
“We should know that the party is bigger than all of us, therefore we should not spend time-fighting. To me it shows that we are not ideologically grounded,” he added.
Todwong clarified that those fighting for positions in the party structures especially the Sheema NRM district chairman should hold fire, saying that structure elections are going to be conducted soon.
“The offices of our structure leaders expired and they were extended for six months effective December 2021, until the end of May. Therefore let us be patient and wait for the election to resolve this puzzle, given that all of you are in an acting capacity,” he clarified.
The SG promised Sheema district antagonizing forces that all the matters will be brought to the attention of the party chairman and a lasting solution will be reached.
The government Chief whip who is also Ruhinda North constituency Member of Parliament Hon. Thomas Bangirana Tayebwa encouraged other Members of Parliament to pick a leaf from Hon. Kateshumbwa calls for council meetings in their constituencies to discuss matters affecting the people they lead.
“I encourage all other MPs to call area delegates to discuss issues affecting NRM. Such a meeting in Sheema is a sign of peace and the use of concerted efforts to solve their differences have paid good results. Sheema is now united,” Tayebwa said, adding “Many people have been diverted, but I urge you to remain united.”
The Sheema Municipality Member of Parliament Hon. Dickson Collins Kateshumbwa said that the reason for being in politics is to serve people who give us the mandate to lead them. Lack of unity, he adds, will paralyze our efforts to develop our people.
“I want to call upon everyone to embrace unity. The election ended a year ago so we need to concentrate on service delivery,” Kateshumbwa said.
Sheema municipality and the district at large is lacking a lot in household income. Let the government services be delivered and reach people. I, therefore, condemn any acts of division. The party is bigger than all,” Katesh as he is fondly called by his diehard supporters pointed.
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