Former Rwenzururu Fighters appeal government for resettlement and rehabilitation

By Bikeke Saimon

Over 526 ex- Rwenzururu Fighters have asked government to answer their long time demand for relocation and rehabilitation.

In their report presented before the Minister for works, Gen. Katumba Wamala, the Rwenzururu veterans, say since 1982 government has drugged to fulfil their demands having lost their pieces of land and settlements as they participated in the Rwenzururu war in the jungles of Mt Rwenzori.

The aging former fighters informed the minister that their children have since been left helplessly after their land from which they would be benefiting was grabbed following the Rwenzururu insurgency whose major motive was to fight for a separate monarchy from the then Toro Kingdom in the early 1960s.

Since the 1960s, the struggle went through various levels and political contexts, which in 2008 saw government reorganizing the Rwenzururu kingdom as a cultural institution.

General Katumba Wamala on Wednesday 25’ April 2019 meeting the former fighters at the District multipurpose hall in Kasese town after commissioning construction works of a 10Kilometres Road which stretches from Senye, Kisamba-Kighuthu road in Kisinga Sub County Bukonzo East Constituency, expected to be constructed at a tune of Shillings 60 Million.

Responding to some of their demands, Gen. Wamala said there were vital reasons for the government to recognize and reinstate the Rwenzururu Kingdom and therefore appealing the ex-combatants to be truthful as they engage government to respond to their demands.

He cautioned people against “propaganda and politicians talk” saying the two aspects are held responsible for the conflicts in the region in the recent past.

“Propaganda is what is killing this region. Politicians talk a lot but does little, you need to get reed of those with selfish interests” Katumba said.

For them to benefit on government programs, the Minister urged Rwenzururu Veterans to get organized in groups.

On security, Gen. Katumba the former Chief of Defenses forces who appealed religious leaders to preach the word of God and distance themselves from politics also said there is need to maintain the prevailing peace in Kasese District.

He stressed that government would only be changed through an election adding that the regime is standing on a firm and strong Hand.

“It’s only through the ballot that the government can change. It is on a very firm and strong hand’’ stressing that government would deal with any negative force intending to destabilize the country.

In the meeting also was, the deputy command of the land forces Maj. Gen. Kavuma Charles who said Uganda Peoples Defense Forces (UPDF)was not against ex-combatants.

He added that as UPDF they don’t fight tribe, religion but will always fight the country’s enemy.

“We are the same people because we have been in the same struggle of liberating Uganda” Kavuma said.

In his remarks the Kasese Resident District Commission, Lt Joe Walusimbi said security across the District is at normal however adding that, there are other issues being handled by police.

He urged People across the District to guard the prevailing peace and unity jealously.
“Peace and unity is a must, therefore, we need to guard it jealously.” Lt Walusimbi said.

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