All the accused in Kayiira’s death were killed in prison

According to a reliable source, justice Karookora refused to adjourn the case of Kayiira’s assassination until he had heard from the accused. It so happened that the accused had all been killed in prison and that is what one state attorney reported to the justice. How convenient, for the state to have had all the accused snuffed before appearing in front of a straight forward judge. There is more than what meets the eyes in this case, and we need to engage the people in charge of security in the country at the time Dr. Besigye and Mrs Bangirana not excluded. I find it terribly strange that folks in the village who witnessed the operation speak of army vehicles, not too many civilians were privy to such vehicles at the time. Why have all the security operatives of a major city like Kampala kept quite on this issue for so long-today it might be Kayiira’s death that we are inquiring about ,tomorrow it might be another one of our heroes, we need to break that wall of silence that has been the MO of folks who swore to protect the constitution and the people of Uganda, to start healing some wounds.

I always thought that soldiers are trained to hit on target-why are some of our soldiers on this forum shooting aimlessly in all directions on this one.

Regarding the issue of Museveni using Tax payers’ money to buy a house for Beti Kayiira in USA,   the housing issue should not be looked upon as some pawn for Kayiira’s life. Look Kayiira was survived by young children as young as 7 through early teens and his death immediately meant that Betty and the children had to fend for themselves in this country that demands rent and utilities-without thought of loss or death.  I’m not sure what Betty was doing for work when her husband’s life was snuffed away.

I however, believe that she was not making enough to support her family at the time. Kayiira had a tenured post as a professor at the University in Connecticut and he was the major bread winner of the family.
To even think that Betty, the mother of his children may have played a role in this while in Boston is preposterous; it is like adding salt to injury. What is more believable, is that Mrs Kayiira simply went to boldly seek much needed help from a fellow guerilla, well known to them, who felt a knee jerk reaction to help out as a parent himself -this is how we ought to look her fending for her children. Remember, it was Kayiira, during the second coming of Museveni, who kept on asking when would Museveni get into town. It was a shock to all of us who knew the family here in Boston, to hear of his arrest and later the execution style of his death.

I hope all those who participated in his death, would some day come find un cowardly conviction to come out and help his children put closure on this very painful chapter in their lives. We cannot have double standards on one hand the two presidents are seeking for justice in the international courts for those who committed genocide in Rwanda and now Konyi’s arrest by the ICC-yet they were both in command when a heinous crime took place under their watch. The death of Kayiira was carried out in an orchestrated military style that warranted more explanation from the two presidents Kagame and Museveni.

It would seem like an incredible security breach, if a person of that stature in Uganda would get executed in that fashion and not cause any heads to roll with those responsible for security in the country!!!  His children have moved on, but the onus to come clean is squarely on those parents too, who controlled the security of the country at the time.

There is a common saying that curtails us from being side winders “Never unleash your venom onto other travelers after a skirmish in the market place “. In the case of our friend Kayiira, his murder took place in Uganda during day light and those who committed it knew that they were impervious to arrest or prosecution period. We could blame Gombya for hosting him, hell, he could have been at anybody’s house on that fateful day, the same with Gerard Kidu’s murderers unless we as a people say enough is enough and start demanding for accountability and a serious criminal investigation on such matters. The Ugandan guillotine of death will eventually break off the breasts of all mothers.

Tendo Kaluma

Ugandan residing in Boston

Scotland Yard Report On Kayiira’s death released by de Uganda government

K. Thompson

Detective Chief Superintendent

(May, 7 1987)

1. This report concerns enquiries into the murder of Dr. Andrew Lutakome Kayiira age 46 years, former Minister of Energy for the Ugandan Government who at the time of his death on March 6, 1987 was residing at Lukuli-Konge village, Kampala, Uganda, and the assistance given to the Uganda Police by Detective Chief Superintendent Thompson (Serious Crime Branch) and Detective Sergeant Sanderson (Laboratory Liaison Officer) at the direct request of President Museveni of Uganda.

2. Circumstances of case
On March 6, 1987, at about 11:00pm Dr. Kayiira and his friend Mr. Henry Gombya, a BBC stringer, were having a meal with Gombya’s wife, Vicky Navva, age 24 years, and three other girls, Josephine Babirye, age 19, Julian Nabwire, age 14 years and Annet Namatovu, age 23 years, when a number of men believed to be about 10 to 14, entered the garden compound and attacked the persons present.

3. At the time of the attack it was dark and the house was without electricity due to power cuts and the only lighting was that provided by a storm lamp which was apparently hanging from the side wall nearest where the occupants were eating.

4. Some of the attackers had torches and according to the witnesses at least three of the attackers had fire-arms, one an AK47 submachine gun.

5. Exactly what transpired will be examined in greater detail further in the report but suffice it to say the occupants of the house ran into the premises, including Dr. Kayiira and Mr. Gombya and hid themselves in their respective rooms.

6.Subsequent events show that Dr. Kayiira was shot four times (two in the right arm and twice in the left side of the body), injuries from which he died and Mr. Gombya made his escape via the front security gate and hid in a banana plantation after first separating the sum of 40 million shillings into two halves and throwing one half in a box into the matoke plantation which adjoins the house. The remaining half was left for the attackers and is part of the property stolen from the house. None of the other occupants of the house, i.e. the three girls, were apparently injured although Vicky Naava states that she was kicked and punched.

7. Background information
Before looking at the evidence surrounding the murder, it is of use if the reader was made aware of the backgrounds and events involving the main principals, i.e. Dr. Kayiira and Mr. Gombya.

8. Uganda has since their independence from Britain in 1962 been in regular unrest and in particular since 1971 when the Obote Government was overthrown by Amin’s Ugandan Army.

9. Obote went into exile and formed up an army called the UNLA (Ugandan National Liberation Army) and with the assistance of the Tanzanian Army overthrew Amin’s Government in 1979.

10. In 1980, Obote held elections and UNLA were retained. However, in 1985, Obote was overthrown by his Commander Okello and the UNLA continued.

11. In 1986 Okello was himself overthrown by the NRA (National Resistance Army) led by President Museveni.

12. It was during Obote’s 1980 elections which it is alleged by some people was rigged that the NRA was formed in the bush by, at the beginning, 27 men.

13. It was during Museveni’s time in the bush that he met up with Dr. Kayiira’s UFA (Ugandan Freedom Army) and its political wing the UFM (Uganda Freedom Movement).

14. Suffice it say Museveni overthrew the Okello government in 1986 at which time Dr. Kayiira was with Okello. After the coup, Dr. Kayiira joined forces with Museveni.

15. Despite President Museveni’s friendship with Dr. Kayiira there had been recent mistrust of him by the President as a result of which Dr. Kayiira was arrested in October for allegedly plotting against the Government and subsequently released by the court on February 24, 1987, due to lack of evidence.

16. The release of Dr. Kayiira surprised some people and the subsequent murder of Kayiira led to the strong rumours that his death was politically motivated and had been caused by the Government’s hand.

17. It against this background that evidence surrounding the investigation into Dr. Kayiiraa’s death must be viewed.

18 Events leading up to the murder
Mr. Henry Gombya is a BBC stringer and although his work involves reporting matters of interest to news agencies on freelance basis, he is undoubtedly very well connected with many government officials and also strongly suspected of being involved in black market business transactions involving foreign exchange. In Uganda the exchange of currency on the black market appears to be the rule rather than the exception.

19. Gombya is a married man and although he claims that his wife is Vicky Naava it is known that he has a wife called Betty living in Uganda .

20. Whatever the situation domestically, Gombya on February 22, 1987, rented a four-bedroom house at Lukuli-Konge Village , Kampala and moved in with Vicky Naava. His rent was 1.2 million shillings (500 pounds) per month and he paid one year’s rent in advance. It was at his house that the murder took place

21. Dr.. Kayiira as already stated has been a leading figure of the UFA and UFM and a close friend of President Museveni although relations had been strained recently. Dr. Kayiira was also a close friend of Gombya although only having met him in 1985 and prior to the murder the two had been seen very often together. It is also strongly rumoured that whilst Dr. Kayiira was in prison, money sent to him from America for his UFM officers was being looked after by Gombya. This fact, however, is difficult to confirm, and Gombya recently denied this to the officer reporting. What is agreed however is after Dr. Kayiira’s release from prison on February 24, 1987, Gombya went to prison to ask why he had been released and further to request that he should be re-arrested. The reason for this action is however unknown due to Gombya leaving Uganda after the murder and is therefore a matter of conjecture.

22. It is significant however that Gombya allowed Dr. Kayiira to stay at his house after his release from prison.

23.It was because of the above facts and the political overtones that the subsequent murder of Dr. Kayiira was quickly seized on by various factions to suggest that his death was not only politically motivated but might even have been carried out by President Museveni’s soldiers on the President’s orders. This charge is emphatically denied by the President.

24. Scene of murder
The venue of the offence is a threebedroom detached house standing within a large plot of land with wire security fencing surrounding it. This fencing is also strengthened by bamboo cane. The height of the fence is 7 feet.

25. The house itself is a one-storey type with balcony over the top of a garage attached to the side of the house. At the rear of the house is a building which is used for cooking and for servants to live.

26. A drive way leads from the house to a double door security entrance with the gate being 8 feet in height with spikes on the top. It is this gate that Gombya states he climbed over to make his escape.

27.The house is owned by Mr and Mrs Katongole who live opposite and had the house built to rent. Mr. Gombya was the first tenant of the property.

28. The surrounding area is mainly bush country with plantations of banana and matooke which the local villagers cultivate to sell and to live. The villagers’ houses are mainly mud lined walled huts and they live together in small communes drawn together only by the local village chief and the elected Defence Resistance leader. These two latter persons are very important and it will be seen later have significant bearing on Dr. Kayiira’s presence at the Gombya residence. The conditions for the villagers are very primitive. Running between the various villages and outside Gombya house is a small track which is overgrown and leads eventually to Gaba Road which in turn leads to Kampala which is about six miles away.

29. To give some perspective of the area the reporting officer made ‘house-to-house’ enquiries and in doing so had to walk or drive up to one mile away form the scene to ascertain information from possible witness.

30 Investigation
On the night of the murder as already stated Gombya together with his wife and three other girls were having a meal when they were attacked by a number of men with torches and guns, whereby they ran into the house and locked themselves in their respective bedrooms. Dr. Kayiira and Mr. Gombya each having separate rooms.

31. The suspects, some according to the occupants, were wearing combat trousers and in some cases shirts, shouted to the occupants to come out of the rooms. Also it is alleged that they asked where the doctor and the “UFM man” was and where the money was. This reference to money is significant as it is known that Gombya had obtained 50 million shillings only a few days earlier, further that Dr. Kayiira was present in Gombya’s office when the money was delivered in two separate amounts (10 million shillings on March 3 and 40 million shillings shortly afterwards). At the current exchange rate of approximately 2,000 shillings to the pound the value of that money is in the region of 25,000 pounds. This however must be looked at in the light of the unofficial exchange rate mainly used by the Ugandans which would reduce the value to about 2,500 pounds.

32. The suspects according to witnesses and a reconstruction of the scene, appear to have ordered the four girls out of their room where they had been hiding and after questioning them had locked them in the bathrooms. They then fired a shot through the door of Gombya’s bedroom and then ambushed or kicked open the door and entered. Gombya had decamped.

33. According to Gombya, whilst the suspects were shouting at the girls and kicking his door, he in panic split the money into two halves and threw 20 million shillings in a box into the matooke plantation from the balcony leading from his room and left the remaining money in the bed for the suspects to steal. He then jumped from the balcony, a height of 12 feet and ran down the drive way and on the second attempt managed to climb over the gate. He then hid in a banana plantation until morning.

34. Whilst this was happening the suspects were shouting to Dr. Kayiira to open his bedroom door which he did, at the same time asking them what they wanted. Exactly what happened then will never be fully known, but from reconstruction it appears that upon opening his door the gunman fired two shots which went through Kayiira’s right inside arm and then a further two shots which went through his left side abdomen and passed out the right side. Dr Kayiira died where he had been shot.

35.. The suspects then ransacked the house and stole personal property including the large sum of money (about 20 million shillings), a tape recorder, a camera, radio cassette and video deck belonging to Mr. Gombya. It is not known whether property from Dr. Kayiira was stolen but it is though that he had no property at the house.

36. Witnesses state that when Gombya escaped and was running towards the gates he was seen by one of the suspects who raised the alarm and was told not to pursue him as the “UFM” man is in the house. This would suggest that the suspects knew that Dr. Kayiira was staying at the house and from previous questions to the occupants knew there was money in the house also.

37. Mr. Gombya states that he hid in the banana plantation until about 6am in the morning when he returned to the house and discovered that his friend Dr. Kayiira was dead. He also recovered the 20 million shillings that he had thrown into the matooke plantation.

38. Police were eventually notified at Kabalagala Police Post some two miles away and arrived shortly after 7:30am. A photographer and scenes of crime officer arrived soon after wards. Scenes of crime examination was always going to be difficult as prior to police arrival villagers and other persons from the surrounding areas had descended onto the property and went inside the house to satisfy their curiosity, and pay their respects.

39. The pathologist Dr. Kakande of Mulago hospital examined the body and confirmed that the cause of death was due to multiple gunshot wounds. He did not attend the scene himself. He is very vague about the injuries and admits that he did not carry out a full post mortem examination but purely looked at the body and later allowed the relatives to bury the body. No clothes or blood samples were taken from the body which was buried on March 11 at Masulita, his village, about 30 miles from Kampala ..

40. At the scene of the crime three bullets were found and a broken blood stained stick. In the matooke plantation next to the house was house was founds a cardboard box which has contained the money left on the bed by Gombya and also found in the matooke plantation was a cream coloured jacket, a handbag belonging to Mrs Gombya containing correspondence. In the banana plantation/ bush area about 300 yards from the house was found a black briefcase belonging to Gombya and also a shoe. Correspondence from these items were also found strewn around.

41. Investigations by the Kampala CID under the direction of Mr. Simon Mugamba (Director of CID) and Senior superintendent Fidelis Ongom (officer in charge) commenced and quickly established that Gombya had requested from Mr Henry Katerega, a Kampala businessman, the sum of 50 million shilling very urgently. Further that Gombya has rang him several times to hurry the matter up. Although this action could lead credence to the rumour that Gombya had received money from abroad on behalf of Dr. Kayiira and may have misappropriated it and was now trying to recoup some of it, there is also the more stronger notion that Gombya was involved in foreign exchange business deals with Katerega. This involved Gombya being paid his wages in a business firm of Katerega’s choice in London and subsequently Gombya being paid in Kampala in local currency. This has a ring of truth about it when it is considered that the local residents invariably carry out transactions on the unofficial money exchange which is up to 10 times that of the official rate.

42. As a result of their investigations the police were contacted by a man named Emmanuel Sebbunza, aged 17 years, who informed police that he had been involved with the person responsible for the killing of Dr. Kayiira and, although not at the scene at the time of the offence, assisted them in its preparation and later subsequent hiding of the stolen property. He further stated that he had been paid money for both his assistance and to keep quiet about who took part.

43. It is interesting to note that he states that the motive was robbery as the persons involved in the offence were all ex-UFM members, knew that Dr.. Kayiira was at the house and further knew that a large amount of money was in the house also. He states however that it was believed that Dr. Kayiira had the money.

44. This evidence fits in if it is considered that Dr. Kayiira was with Gombya when the 50 million shillings was obtained by him and further that it was believed that Gombya was holding a large sum of money for Dr. Kayiira.

45. Emmanuel Sebbunza further stated that the arrangements for the offence were made at the shop of Muzeyi & Sons, Kampala belonging to Mr. John Katabazi, age 28 years, a businessman.

46. Subsequently, on March 19, 1987, Katabazi was arrested, as also were four of the 10 or so other participants. Robert Magezi, also known as Babi Katende, age 20 years, and Peter Kiwanuka, also known as Backfire or Kayongo, age 19 years.

47. All persons arrested have been interviewed and made statements but all deny being involved in the offence. One of those arrested in fact gives his alibi of being involved in another robbery at the time of the offence and therefore could not have been involved.

48. All accused, apart from the owner of the business premises (Katabazi), are apparently ex-UFM members, who had served under Dr. Kayiira.

49. Identification parades were subsequently held and Magezi was identified as being at the scene by Julian Nabwire, Kiwanuka identified as being at the scene by Annet Namatovu and, although in itself not evidence, Nabwire ‘almost’ identified Kizito but was scared to do so because of the look she was given by him.

50. In addition, the cream coloured coat found at the scene was identified by Emmanuel Sebbunza as belonging to Kizito.

51. The evidence against the owner of the business premises is just that of Sebbunza and the fact he states that the arrangements for the offence were made there.

52. All persons were subsequently charged with the murder of Dr. Kayiira and are at present remanded in custody.

On Thursday March 26, 1987, at the request of President Museveni, the Ugandan President, I (detective Chief Superintendent Thompson) attached to the Serious Crimes Branch New Scotland Yard, together with Detective Inspector Sanderson, Scenes of Crime Officer attached to the Metropolitan Police Laboratory, travelled to Uganda to assist the investigating officers because of the strong suggestions that the murder of Dr. Kayiira was a ‘political’ one.

53. On March 28, 1987, a briefing was obtained from the Inspector General of Police, Mr. Luke Ofungi, and also from the Director of CID, Mr. Simon Mugamba.

54. Subsequent examination of the scene of the offence by the officers revealed the finding in Gombya’s room of a piece of metal (a bullet) and a piece of wood in Dr. Kayiira’s room, which fitted a missing piece on the door of Gombya’s bedroom which had probably been transferred on the foot of the suspect who had kicked the door down. Blood samples had to be taken from the blood where the victim had died also from blood found on the walls in both Gombya’s and Dr. Kayiira’s rooms. Two tool mark casts were also taken from Gombya’s room. All these exhibits, together with Dr. Kayiira’s briefcase and the cardboard box which had contained the money, together with the cream coloured jacket were sent by hand to the Metropolitan Police Laboratory London for examination. Also sent to the laboratory were three bullets and an empty cartridge case found at the scene.

55. A bullet hole was also found in the garage door and although the bullet has not been recovered, it is known that Gombya’s car was in the garage at the time and now has a burst tyre. Attempts are being made by the Uganda police to recover the bullet from the car which is still in the possession of Gombya’s family.

56. Fingerprints and palm prints, together with control blood samples of all the suspects, were also obtained and sent to the laboratory for examination.

57. Enquiries were made extensively in the area of the murder up to a mile away, which showed that no NRA officers had been seen in the area prior to the date of the murder and further that there was a group of men, about five or so, who were robbing the villagers. No suggestion has been made of military men being seen in the area and the NRA commander has confirmed that his men were not in the area at the time.

58. Also interviewed was a Mr. Kakande-Gava, a teacher who had known Dr. Kayiira since he was a boy and had in effect adopted him and paid for his schooling. On the two days prior to the murder including the actual day of the murder, he had spoken to Dr. Kayiira in his (Mr. Kakande Gava) office and on hearing that Gombya with other four unknown were going to organise a party to celebrate his release from prison warned him not to attend as he did not trust Gombya, who he says was so changeable in personality, and further he felt that he ‘would be signing his own death warrant’. His reasons for this assumption are unclear but how prophetic his warning was.

59. Enquiries also showed that although as is the custom and law Gombya had been introduced to the chief of the village and the defence resistance leader, he had not in fact informed the two officials that Dr… Kayiira was living at the address. This is looked upon by the local Ugandan people as unusual and bad manners. Local enquiries also revealed that none of the villagers knew he was living there although they knew him by name..

60. Lines of enquiry by the investigating officers include checking the financial background of Dr. Kayiira and Mr. Gombya, the tracing of a woman who an informant states was involved in the leading of the suspects to the house. This woman it is alleged as one of the girls who was at the scene when the attack took place.

61. Attempts are being made also to trace five other suspects whose names are known but who have gone to ground in the bush or have gone to Kenya .

62.. Mrs Gombya on March 11, 1987 went to a local travel agent and purchased two open airline tickets for herself and a man named Mr. G. Dick. The man ‘Dick’ is Gombya (confirmed by him) and the tickets costing a total of 3,144,680 shillings (1572.34 pounds) were paid in cash.

63. These tickets were used by Mr and Mrs Gombya on March 13, 1987 when they travelled by Ugandan Airlines to London Gatwick airport. Gombya travelled using this name Dick.

64. It is this action by Gombya that has raised suspicion that he may in fact have had some part in the murder of Dr. Kayiira for although he gave a statement to police before he left, it was self written and he gave no opportunity to interview him on it.

65. It is also unfortunate, in hindsight, that Gombya and his ‘wife’ were taken to Entebbe Airport by the Deputy High Commissioner Mr. Peter Penfold. Gombya was not in fact wanted for any offence at the time and it is alleged by him that this was verified after checks with government sources, however great play was made by the various press/newspapers on the fact that prior to his exit from the country, Gombya had gone into hiding and had not been interviewed by Police.

66. Much comment was also made by the press that rumours strongly stated that Gombya during the time he was in hiding was being sheltered at Mr. Penfold’s own residence.

67. Although at the request of Uganda Police, Mr. Penfold was not officially interviewed in respect of his actions and knowledge of these matters. I did in fact holding an unofficial briefing’ talk with him in which he agrees that he took Mr. And Mrs Gombya to the airport but strongly denies allowing him to stay at his house or any other British High Commission residence.

68. His reasons were that Gombya was a good friend of his (Penfold is the godfather of one of Gombya’s children) and was purely assisting him in his travel to the airport. The fact that his car commands diplomatic respect did not assist in this matter.

69. Although upon our arrival this matter was causing some concern, it appears now to have died down and the fact that British Police officers are assisting the Ugandan Police has help relieve the pressure on this subject. It is the reporting officers opinion that Mr… Penfold’s actions were in hindsight an error of judgement and he had not stayed at his address but was picked up near the Kampala International Centre is believed.

70. There is still much to be done by the Ugandan Police in preparing the case for court, which is not helped by the fact that there is little or no petrol in Kampala and officers making enquiries are experiencing difficulties in travelling to potential witnesses’ addresses. Both Metropolitan police officers have assisted them as much as possible in this matter.

71. Regular meetings were held with the Ugandan Police Officers and Minutes of the main conference were made and given to the officer in the case and the Director of CID in order that they were fully aware of the various actions to be carried out.

It will be seen from the foregoing report that there are many options as to the type of persons who committed the offence and the motive behind it.

73. The original option that the president’s own men were behind the murder of Dr. Kayiira was in fact the strongest one when the British Police Officers arrived in Uganda , despite the fact that five men had been arrested. All of the suspects except one are ex-UFM men and this did not assist to quell the rumours abounding Kampala .

The main options are:-
(1) It was robbery that went wrong when one of the suspects panicked and shot Dr. Kayiira

(2) That the suspects knew Dr. Kayiira was living at Mr. Gombya’s address, were aware that a large sum of money (50 million shillings) had been delivered to Gombya’s office when Dr. Kayiira was present upon which such delivery and presumed that it was for Dr. Kayiira and not Gombya.
(3) Had been informed that upon Dr. Kayiira’s release he had asked for Gombya to supply him the money which it was rumoured Gombya had received from abroad on behalf of Dr. Kayiira for his army forces, and went to rob him.

(4) A combination of any of the above three with the situation presenting itself that, as alleged by the informant, the suspects all being ex-UFM men went to rob Dr. Kayiira and one of their number (WADDA) was recognised by Dr. Kayiira and he had to shoot him to prevent later identification to police.

(5) Option 3 with the added ingredient that Gombya set up the robbery himself to solve his problems in having to return Dr. Kayiira’s money. Gombya’s actions upon his escape helps to support this theory.

(6) The President’s own forces were behind that murder because the courts had released Dr. Kayiira for lack of evidence.

74. It is the reporting officers opinion that on the evidence available Government forces were not behind that murder of Dr. Kayiira and that the suspects knowing that Dr. Kayiira was living at Gombya’s address and having been given information that a large sum of money was on the premises and further believing it to be Kayiira’s, simply set out to rob him of it. During the robbery one was recognised and shot him. Option 4 is therefore the most likely conclusion.

75. Until Gombya is interviewed at length by the Uganda Police, it is impossible to be certain of his implication in this offence, if in fact he is involved and this must therefore remain a matter of conjecture.

76. However, he was seen on 1st May, 1987, by reporting officer in London and has agreed to be interviewed by police from Uganda . Arrangements are being made through I.C.P.O. for this to be done.

77. In conclusion, I would like to express the thanks of myself and Detective Sergeant Sanderson for the assistance and co-operation given by both the Uganda Police and Ugandan authorities and also the British High Commissioner, Uganda .

78. Submitted for information with a request that a copy of the report be forwarded to the Foreign & Commonwealth Office for their information and that the British High Commissioner in Kampala , and a copy forwarded to Mr… Luke Ofungi, the Inspector General of Police, Kampala , Uganda .
79) With further reference to the investigations into the murder of Dr. Andrew Kayiira age 46 years on 6th March, 1987, at Lukuli-Konge Village , Kampala , Uganda and in particular to paragraph 76 of my report dated 7th May, 1987.

80) On Sunday 24th May, 1987, the Director of CID-Uganda Samuel Mugambya together with Deputy Assistant Inspector George Byabashaija travelled to London in order to interview Mr. Henry Gombya age 34 years and his ‘wife’ Vicky Naava Mugerwa age 23 years both of whom give their address as 15, Crawford Place , London , W.1.

81) On Tuesday 26th May, 1987, Mr. Gombya attended New Scotland Yard with his legal representative Mr. Akena Adoko and was interviewed by two Ugandan police officers. A written statement was taken from Gombya by the Ugandan officers and signed by him.

82) On Wednesday 27th May, 1987 Gombya’s ‘wife’ Vicky Mugerwa attended New Scotland Yard and was also interviewed by the two Ugandan police officers and a signed written statement taken. This was also in the presence of Mr. Akena Adoko. Mr. Gombya was not present.

83) It should be pointed out that at this stage that Mr. Adoko is the cousin of ex-president Milton Obote

84) As the original statements are in the possession of the Ugandan police officers, it is not the intention to fully reiterate the full contents of the statements by the Gombya’s but to highlight the main salient points. Copies of the full statements are attached to the main correspondence.

85) The Gombya’s married ‘customarily’ in July 1986 and lived at Entebbe Airport Hotel for eight months. Mr… Gombya has another wife by the name of Penina and has four children by his marriage (three boys and one girl).

86) In February/March 1986 they moved to Lukuli Konge village near Kampala, in a large three-bedroom house rented for the sum of 1.4 million Ugandan shillings per month (700 pounds) by Mr. Gombya and where Dr. Andrew Kayiira lived upon his release from prison on 24th February 1987, and where he was subsequently murdered on 6th March, 1987.

87) Apparently, Mr. Gombya first met Dr. Kayiira during peace talks in August 1985 at Hotel Intercontinental-Nairobi and a man name Aloysius Bossa of Munno Publications was also present. Since that date, Mr. Gombya states he had regular contacts with Dr. Kayiira including a time in 1986 when he accompanied him on a tour of Western Uganda . Dr. Kayiira was a minister at that time.

88) Since then, both Gombya and Dr. Kayiira have been friends and one of the reasons that Mr. Gombya allowed him to move into his house upon his release from prison was that Dr. Kayiira had protected him in 1985 during the regime of Tito Okello when Mr. Gombya’s house was raided by soldiers of the Ugandan National Liberation Army (UNLA). In fact it was Gombya who Kayiira approached in order to be interviewed for BBC upon his release from prison.

89) It is also interesting to note that Mr. Gombya also allowed Dr. Kayiira to use his Kampala office and also for use as a contact address.

90) In respect of the 40 million Uganda shillings (20,000 pounds) referred to in the previous report, Mr. Gombya states he received it in two parts from a businessman named Katerega and was for ‘my personal expenses including my birthday party’.. He also states that the money ‘was neither borrowed nor donated to me by Katerega but it was for business purposes’.

91) The money was in bundles of five million Ugandan shillings and consisted of 5,000 Ugandan shilling notes which were placed by Gombya in a cardboard box.

92) Mr. Gombya stated that Dr. Kayiira only saw 20 million shillings being delivered and would not have been aware of the remaining money. This surely cannot be so if it is remembered that two witnesses state that the money, 50 million not 40 million, was in fact delivered in two parts, i.e 10 million and 40 million and Dr… Kayiira was present in Gombya’s office when the cash was delivered and would have seen it. Further, Gombya states that his office messenger, Edward Lubwama, put it in Kayiira’s car boot and also that a friend named Kadduke had locked the car boot after it was closed.

93) Mr.. Gombya and Dr. Kayiira subsequently returned home at about 10.00pm after they had stopped for drinks at a bar and also dropped off two girls. At the house when they arrived, apart from Gombya’s family, was a friend of Dr. Kayiira named Kayiwa and also Gombya’s office Manager, Hussein Kabogoza. Although both these persons left shortly after Gombya’s arrival, he is sure that they did not know of the large amount of money that he had.

94) Between 10.30pm and about 11.30pm, Mr. Gombya went out at Dr. Kayiira’s request and purchased batteries for the radio. Upon his return they and the family were dancing and eating on the patio outside of the house when they were attacked by a group of about 10 men who had torches and came from around both sides of the house.

95) The attackers were in different states of dress in that some had shirts (combat), some didn’t, and some according to Mr. Gombya had clothing similar to that worn by the National Resistance Army (NRA). Only two of the attackers had guns described by Gombya as type AK47 and the person apparently giving the command was in civilian clothes. The language used was Luganda.

96) The sequence of the events that subsequently took place is confusing due to the darkness (no electricity) and is as described in paragraph 30-37 in the previous report. Suffice it to say Mrs. Gombya confirms her earlier statement to police although this time she states she was in the corridor and saw the attackers go into Dr. Kayiira’s bedroom and shoot him, whereas in the previous statement she was in the bathroom with other members of the family and didn’t see what happened.

97) Mr. Gombya’s description of events is still basically consistent with that given in his earlier statement to police in Uganda and it is important to note very much milder in context to that expressed by him in the various newspapers and publications to whom he has given interviews. On this point, Mr. Gombya admits that some of the opinions expressed by him in newspapers etc., were based on hearsay.

98) Mr. Gombya confirms that he in fact took the photograph of the body of Dr. Kayiira that has appeared in the various press publications including The Standard of Nairobi. He has informed me that he will supply the photographs to me in order that they can be forwarded to the Uganda Police. He will not release the negatives.

99) Mr. and Mrs. Gombya both state that they would like to return to Uganda but both feel that it is not politically safe for them to do so. Both have, they say, made application to the UK authorities to remain in the UK for the time being.

100) Conclusions
Without doubt, Mr. Gombya appears to be getting himself politically involved if the general background of the people and circumstances of this tragic incident are examined including his reported remarks to the newspapers.

As a BBC stringer/journalist, his choice of actions give rise to suspicion that his position as an ‘impartial’ witness is being impaired by the original rumour that NRA soldiers were involved in the murder of his close friend Dr. Kayiira.

He agreed that he has no real evidence of this for although some of the attackers were wearing combat type clothing, this is the general dress of a large number of persons in Kampala and its importance is not so clear-cut as it might first appear.

101) Mr. Gombya is clearly not anxious to give the real reason for his possession of the large sum of money (see paragraph 90) which supports the original theory of black-market money dealing or trying to recoup money belonging to Dr. Kayiira which he may have had and misappropriated. This last suggestion he denies. He does not admit the first suggestion but neither does he deny it.

102) It is the reporting officers’ opinion that although Mr. and Mrs. Gombya are basically telling the truth in respect of the events leading to the murder of Dr. Kayiira, Mr. Gombya, certainly either for ‘political’ reasons or otherwise is not being fully forthcoming with all he knows about the circumstances surrounding the murder on 6th March 1987.

103) It is however still the reporting officers’ opinion that on the evidence available there is no evidence to implicate the President or his army and that the incident is as previously stated at paragraph 74 in previous report, a robbery that went wrong, for many people must surely have known about the large sums of money in his possession.

No Trust among Ugandans

Dr. Henry Gombya,

I am glad to have read your clarification about the fateful day on which our dear compatriot and freedom fighter, Dr. Andrew L. Kayiira was assassinated. I believe that many like myself who have been confused about the matter will focus on the questions you raised in your clarification, hopefully the killers will be brought to justice. It is about 20 years ago when I suddenly declined your invitation while I was in London, and had to hurry back to Denmark. I conveyed the following mail to the UAH forum explaining the troubles I had to endure during my missions of good will, but hindered by rumours.

The moment I learned about the rumour mentioned in the following mail to the UAH forum, I was concerned by what agony you would be in, hearing the same rumour after my departure. Being from Western Uganda, I find it difficult to interact freely with other fellow Ugandans who always suspect that we, from Western Uganda are used by the UG government to spy on our compatriots. Dr. Gombya, I believe that you remember my perfomance in the Conference we attended together in Stockholm. After that I have been called a ” Traitor” by those who say that the government in Uganda is, ” Our Government”, simply because I come from Western Region of Uganda. There are certain foreign governments which in my view, are accomplices in Human Rights violations by the Uganda government.

As I write here, I want you and the UAH forum members to know that I am a victim of such accomplice against which I am still fighting. I wish you very well and May God Bless Uganda.

Byaruhanga, Jonny Rubin.

Fellow Ugandans, Firstly, I thank Mr. Mulindwa Edward for taking time to clarify the situation at home about which I was very confused. I am also grateful to many participants of the UAH forum who share their thoughts, simply in search for a solution to the situation in our country

In February, 1986 about a month since the NRA/M took power, I telephoned a friend in Kampala and asked him how the situation was. He told me that many people were rejoicing to see the Okellos out, ” for they were convinced that the Okellos were an extension of the Obote regime.” He also told me to mark his words when he said that, ” Museveni is here to stay.” What actually surprised me was that him (my friend) being a Lugbari from West Nile practically the people associated with Idi Amin, a person Museveni loathes very much, could speak so passionately and affirmatively about him. I guess, like many other Ugandans I prayed that the new government would restore the rule of Law and Democracy that were nolonger recognizable in Uganda.

By 1989, The Organisation of Ugandans in Sweden was practically the only voice of Ugandans in Scandinavia. There was also The Uganda Human Rights Activists in Scandinavia ( UHRAS ) led by Mr. Lance Sera Muwanga, based in Sweden. The latter was a splinter group from the original UHRAS which was led by Mr. Ibrahim Mukiibi, then based in Denmark. The organisation split when it was evident that Mr. Mukiibi was increasingly getting closer to the NRA/M, an act which was seen as compromising the organisation’s impartiality. As if to prove their argument, Mr. Mukiibi was appointed by the NRA/M government as Uganda’s Foreign Minister.

By mid 1989, the situation in Uganda was still unpredictable. Ugandans in Denmark were scattered and did not have any organisation to unite us like our compatriots in Sweden. I learned that the former Ugandan Minister of Culture and Community Development, Professor Dani Wadada Nabudere was lecturing at an Internation College in Helsingor, Denmark. I felt that the former Minister with his administrative experience could advise me on how I could form an organisation to bring our people, Ugandans together. I telephoned the College and the Professor was very glad to invite me for a discussion. The following day I went to the College to meet Prof. Dani W. Nabudere. I was accompanied by Mr. Jeffrey Abola, a former policeman in Uganda. Prof. Nabudere was happy and willing to advise us on how we could function as a non political organisation that would bring all Ugandans together irrespective of any affiliation.

He emphasized that not only were Ugandans scattered, but all the Africans were and seemed to have lost any sense of direction. I told him that I was determined to found the organisation. My colleague, Mr. Jeffrey Abola chose to establish an organisation which he called, ” The League of Elders.” I travelled to Sweeden, Germany and the U.K to meet as many Ugandans as possible, for a better knowledge on how we could found a non political organisation.

While in UK I was invited by Mr. Omwony Ojwok who explained to me how the Uganda Community Relief Association (UCRA) based in UK functioned. I met many Ugandans including a former Ugandan Ambassador to the UN, then living in Croydon. While preparing to meet Mr. Henry Gombya, (a former BBC correspondent in Uganda) I met a group of Ugandans in town who shocked me. I heard them speaking Luganda and I decided to greet them in Luganda. I told them that I was enjoying a walk in town. ” Wegeendereze nno, twaagafunye nti nno Museveni yaweereza mbega mukibuka okunoonya Gombya.” ( Be careful, we heard that Museveni has sent a spy in town to look for Gombya.) ” Byaruhanga ry’erinya”. (Byaruhanga is the name). We had not even introduced ourselves, I guess it is the natural happiness that exists when Ugandans meet. I Immediately, excused myself pretending to hurry for the train, but told them that we ”shall” meet at the UCRA meeting.

Mr. Henry Gombya was looking forward to meeting me, I believe because the Ugandans I had met in Sweeden, Germany and UK obviously knew about my mission and could have informed him not to fear me. However, I decided not to meet Mr. Gombya and hurried back to Denmark. In Denmark many concerned Ugandans including Mr. Francis W. Bwengye, Professor A. Baalam C.D. Kweri, Mr. Jesse Mutenga ( former Diplomat) often came to my residense for a chat whenever they happened to come to Copenhagen. Another shock was when I went to the Copenhagen Central Railway Station. I usually went there to buy International newspapers, especially the New African. I passed by a group of Africans seated on a bench inside the hall, as I rushed to and fro’ looking for where to buy certain items. I noticed that the Africans on the bench looked at me with some curiosity, so that I stoped to greet them. I told them that I come from Uganda and with much pleasure they said that they too were from Uganda. Realizing that they were new in town, I told them that I was also new and was looking around for Ugandans to advise me how I could easily get asylum. We spoke Luganda and I told them that I was from Masaka. This I said in case they noticed probably an accent which was not typical of Baganda from Kampala. They said that they were new and were living in an Asylum Applicants’ Centre north of Copenhagen. Before we parted they cautioned me, ” Twaawulidde nti nno wano e Copenhagen waliyo mbega wa Museveni. Bagamba nti oyo gemaaso era gemattu ga Museveni. Erinya rye ye Byaruhanga, oba Munyolo oba Munankole, tetumanyi”. (We heard that there is a Museveni’s spy in Copenhagen. It is said that this one is the eyes and ears of Museveni. His name is Byaruhanga, whether he is a Munyoro or a Munyankore, we don’t know.) I thanked them for the caution and left.

Several weeks later, the Organisation of Ugandans in Sweden, I think it was in conjunction with the Uganda Human Rights Activists in Scandinavia (UHRAS) organized a Conference on Uganda. The Uganda government would be represented by the UG Ambassador to North Europe, based in Denmark H.E Mrs. Edith Grace Sempala. I was one of the main speakers. We were all asked by the Conference Chairman to be as honest and fearless as possible. To my shock again, a senior member and Official of the Organisation of Ugandans in Sweden stood up and said that he did not trust me and that he had reports suggesting that I was a Uganda government spy. I almost collapsed. I sat there wondering who could have spread such false and dangerous rumours about me. Mr. Lance Sera Muwanga stood up and said that he had me followed for a year and found out that I was not a spy. He added that in fact I did not even belong to any party or organisation and assured everyone that I was harmless. Years have passed and there is still no credible opposition to the NRA/M in sight. The FDC which seemed to attract many people has problems of their own, apart from the rumour that it is actually NRM in disguise.

My question is how can anyone dispute my friend’s affirmation that, ” Museveni is here to stay”? Twenty three years in power and still counting. Ugandans don’t trust each other as we used to do. When your name is recognized as from Western Uganda, the topic of discussion changes. I used to hear a slogan, ” Divide and Rule.” Another one, ” United we stand.” We are not united as I can see and we don’t seem to know what we urgently need to do in order to have a system appreciated by the majority. A system that enables the citizens to elect the leaders that would ensure all of us to live in harmony. As long as the people of Uganda are not harmonious, I don’t see any other way to keep the country intact.

Byaruhanga, Jonny Rubin.

Dr.Gombya on Andrew Kayiira’s Death

Henry Gombya

I have read with great amusement comments from Ugandans At Heart(UAH) forum. It seems there is a very hot argument about what happened to the late Dr Andrew Lutakome Kayiira and the relationship I had with him. I am going to, hopefully, once and for the last time, explain this relationship. I am not being forced by anybody to contribute to your members as I believe I have explained myself for so many years now. But this is the first time I have addressed the issue on a website.

There has been a lot of conspiracy theories regarding my relationship with Dr Kayiira. Most have been so hurting and painful to me and my family. Questions have been raised as to how Dr Kayiira came to stay at my house and not at anybody else’s. There has also been conspiracy theories that in someway, I was privy to Dr Kayiira’s finances and that when he came out of prison he wanted to know where his money was. These are pathetic conspiracies mostly engineered by those who are bent on seeing that the killers of Dr Kayiira are never brought to book.

Nobody should ever doubt how much I would like to see Kayiira’s killers brought to justice.. But every time the theory conspirators engage in telling the world that I had anything to do with his death, those who fall for their tricks help in making sure that attention is driven away from the killers and those who planned this assassination. I believe these killers (apart from those that have since died) are still roaming the streets of Kampala believing that they got away with murder. But  let me tell them this: Whatever it takes and however long it will be, one day they will be brought to justice.

As I have already explained in newspapers worldwide, TV (BBC 2 Newsnight) and on Ugandan and foreign radios about how Kayiira was gunned down in my house, I want to use this opportunity to dioscuss some of the conspiracy theories below.

I had been taking care of Andrew’s finances and I had fallen out with Kayiira!

This is indeed a fallacy! Andrew was Chairman of the Uganda Freedom Movement (UFM). This was a big organisation that had him at the top. It meant there were many people below him holding offices as is always the case in similar organisations. I have never been a member of the UFM so I could not have held any position in an organisation where I wasn’t even a member.. To this day, all I know about the UFM is through mostly my academic research here in the United Kingdom. At the time when Andrew was alive, I did not know much about the UFM apart from what every journalist like me knew at that time.

I believe organisations like UFM have Treasury Secretary or those that look after their finances. To this day no such official has ever come forward to claim I was handling any of their monies. Can anybody believe that any organisation wanting to fund a guerrilla movement like the UFM would have channelled their aid through a journalist filing stories for the BBC, the Nairobi Standard, New African and African Concord? Anybody knows that this, for a journalist, would have made very good copy. The fact is I have never been UFM’s financier nor has anybody ever approached me to handle its money. The last few days of Kayiira’s life were spent with friends who looked after him, bought and always paid drinks for him and fed him. While in prison, friends rallied together to collect funds to look after him and pay for his lawyers. I am happy to have been one of thiose friends who was approached for help while Andrew was in prison and I obliged without hesitation.

It should be noted here that I knew Dr Kayiira for a very short period. But our relationship was very much strengthened when he gave me protection while the NRA were shooting their way to power. We all stayed indoors most of this time particularly myself, as I was afraid to be seen on the streets. Staying in close quarters with people often brings them closer.

Therefore there is not a thread of truth  that at anytime, Andrew and I had fallen out. He liked me, no doubt and I adored him, but that is where it stopped. Our association grew when he asked me to accompany him on a tour of Western Uganda when he was Energy Minister. What Andrew was doing at that time was rare as Ugandan ministers often never asked journalists to accompany them on tours. But having lived abroad for a long time and as a university professor in Boston, Massachusetts, Andrew was doing what every politician in the West does. They take prominent journalists around with them to record what they (the politicians) are doing. Are you aware how many journalists Prime Minister Gordon Brown usually travels with? Or ho0w many are now travelling with the US President here at the G20 summit? Loads!

CONSPIRACY THEORY TWO: I was working for the NRA!

How stupid! How low can anyone go in advancing such a theory? What am I doing here in Europe 23 years since leaving Uganda if I was a NRA stooge that tricked Dr Kayiira to come and stay at my house? FACT: I invited Kayiira to my house because he had saved my life when the Okello’s threatened me. He gave me 24 hour protection until the NRA captured power and secured Kampala. Finding him squeezed into a one-bed-roomed flat belonging to his cousin, I thought that since this was the very fellow who had protected me I owed it to him to take him into decent accommodation. My only regret is that I failed to return his favour. Contrary to the belief of those cowards who gunned him down, Andrew had no plans to stage a coup against Museveni. Those cowards know themselves. They are the ones who ahve kept quiet and not uttered a word about the many times, Andrew attempted to see Museveni after his release, saying that he could talk to the rebels who were  causing problems in the North and that he believed he could persuade them to stop fighting. But every time he tried to make an appointment with Museveni, the door was cruelly banged shut against him..  One of your bloggers thinks I was an NRA spy because I was the one who told Museveni that the Okellos had overthrow Obote. While it is true that I did tell Museveni about Obote’s overthrow, there is no truth whatsoever that I was doing this because of being an NRA spy. FACT: I called Museveni in Gutenberg, Sweden after my bosses at the BBC in London gave me his number and asked me to call him to get a comment about the Okello coup. So calling Museveni was to do with my job as a journalist and nothing to do with the spy conspiracy.

CONSPIRACY THEORY THREE: Where did I get the wealth to live in a 14.5 million house?

I have never lived in a house this expensive and I have no idea where the figure came from. The house I was renting at Gaba was at UgShs3 million a year. I was able to afford this amount because while I may have been working for Ngabo and the Star, I was already freelancing for the BBC programme Focus On Africa, a monthly stipend with the Nairobi Standard newspaper, the weekly African Concord, then based in London, articles for the New African and Africa Now magazines. These paid me in foreign currency and I was easily able to transfer this in Uganda currency and afford such a house.
The money I was paid for my work as News Editor of The Star only paid for fuel for my car. At that time I remember I was one of only about four Ugandans journalists who made most of their earnings through foreign news organisations. We were all relatively well off compared to our fellow colleagues in Uganda.

The killing of Dr Kayiira completely turned my life around.I lost so much money in contracts I had captured with the foreign media. I have had to start my life all over again. The only positive I can take from my exiled life is the fact that I have educated myself to such a degree that I am in a very good position to understand why Africa is the way it is today. Had I been in Uganda all these past 23 years, I doubt whether I would have accumulated the kind of knowledge my poor and exiled life has enable me to achieve.

Throughout this period no one seems to have taken a step back and wondered how it feels to lose a close friend and read every day of your life conspiracy theories that you could have been part of the plot to kill him. No one has had the courage to come out and speak against these theories and no one has spared a thought about my dear wife who was the last person to see Dr Kayiira breathe his last breath.  And no one seems to care what effects the killing of Dr Kayiira has had on my life and that of the immediate members of my family.

No one seems to question why some former senior ranking officers of the UFM have chosen to stay quiet and neither come out in my defence, nor speak out against me. No one has question why people like Francis Bwengye who was UFM Secretary General at first fled Uganda soon after Kayiira was killed and is now living comfortable in Kampala. No one has questioned the acceptance of ambassadorial posts by Dan Ssozi, a former close friend of Dr Kayiira. And while I have not stepped on the African continent for more than 23 years now, no one seems to question why so many have come to London and claimed asylum saying they had been Kayiira’s supporters and on getting their immigration status take the next plane back home.

When crimes are committed, the police usually look for a motive. Does anyone in their sane minds really believe that an ordinary journalist like me would have planned and carried out the killing of a leader of a guerrilla movement? I may be academically clever but I doubt whether I would have managed this assignment. It was a professional job done but professional killers. I have never been one. No one has taken much interest in comments made by a Uganda police dog handler who categorically stated that police dogs followed a scent from my house to lubiri barracks and inside, they found my wife’s handbag. Why has no onwe said anything aboyut this? What was my wife’s handbag doing at the end of the police dog scent inside Lubiri barracks? Am I wrong then in thinking that I have been purposely made a scape goat?

I hope I have given you guys something to think about and it is my prayer that you help me find who killed Kayiira. It is a job I intend to do as long as I am alive. It is a job that every peace loving Ugandan should be doing now. On his release from Luzira prison, Museveni told journalists in Kampala: “Kayiira may have been released by the courts. We in the NRA believe he was atttempting to  overthrow the government. And we will follow him. If anyone is looking for a motive, shouldn’t they be starting here?  And that is one reason I have refused to return to Uganda as I believe this can be done better while I am here. As long as the NRM is in power, Kayiira’s killers may never be brought to justice but as a historian I can only say that history repeats itself. The Museveni regime is here today. It will be gone tomorrow. And then, the search will resume on homeland.

This is the only and last time I will speak on this issue.

Regarding Ngabo Radio, I am happy to report that I will be presenting an English show every Saturday starting May 19, 2009. I am writing this while covering the G20 summit in the Excel Centre East London. I will be away for two weeks and will start the show on Saturday 19th. The show will be the English version of Tuula Twogere, the Luganda show I have been hosting for the last three weeks. We intend to bring on the show several important people to help us understand the problems we have in Uganda today. Ngabo Radio is for all Ugandans and not only for the Baganda. It may have started with Luganda but rest assured that we want each and every Ugandan tio feel free to participate in the shows as this is the only voice at the moment Ugandans have to voice their concerns with fear or favour, knowing that after the show, they will return to their homes without having to look over their shoulders wondering whether anyone is following them. So I urge you to join in by calling the show to say whatevere they want and let everyone know about the radio.

A luta continua!

Dr.Henry Gombya

Journalist/Ugandan residing in the UK

UAH forumist

”Kyeyo”:Uganda Boarding schools aren’t good for kids anymore

The boys of S.4 West in 1995 in Kibuli Secondary School when Alhajji Abbasi Kawaase was stil the headmaster

Dear Ugandans abroad,

Sending a child to a boarding school in Uganda is a mistake! Taking ones kids to school here just because you have failed to discipline them there abroad is wrong. There is no school in Uganda that is going to do them discipline for you. In other words there is no school here that is going to do the parenting for you. Schools in Uganda especially the private “good” ones are merely business projects. They are simply interested in your money.

There is this myth that Ugandan schools are better blah blah.This is simply nostalgia. Those schools are long dead- gone with the fundamental change of 1986 by Museveni! I know of many people who brought back their unruly kids to be taught here and they have all failed. Very few have gotten their money’s worth. The kids even got worse from here in Uganda. They learnt how to smoke bhung, marijuana and even cocaine from Kampala!

One of the kids when he went back to London became the boss of the street kids there! He is now serving time in “wormwood scrubs” a big prison in London! No, keep your kids where you are and where you can personally give them the parental love they need to grow up into responsible citizens.You bring them here in Uganda as a punishment, they will punish you back! Keep your kids with you. There are better schools over there. It’s where the Ministers and big people here in Uganda take their kids. Schools here have been spoilt by UPE,USE and no UUE (Universal University education)!

Just like the health sector has gone to the dogs, so has the education and everything else! It’s only the Presidency (PPU) that still works here! And even this, there are those who wonder …….

The mistake people make is to first bring their kids there in the developed nations then after they realize they are “failing” then “deport” their kids back to Uganda.This is both traumatizing and i think even illegal ! Imagine you are used to eating sausages and eggs, then they take you back to a place where they serve posho and lumonde! You are used to living with your “loving” parents then you are abruptly whisked to live with strangers in a dormitory?

If you think schools here in Uganda are better then leave your kids here and never take them there in the first place. It’s only fair. I have seen Big men cry when they land at Entebbe after being deported. What do you think a young child goes through? Some people have even committed suicide!

My view is this: Never ever take you kids out only to send them back “Mbu” to learn good manners or how to behave.The standard here have of course gone down the drain kabisa kabisa! I don’t think we shall ever get back to even half of what we had before the “Revolution”!

I earned my living sometimes back advising our people about this. It’s not a new thing. I got kids and I know what iam talking about. I went to boarding schools all my life and i think i got one of the best education our country did provide then. But i swore never to take my kids to boarding school. I just couldn’t imagine myself chewing chicken at home as my kid is somewhere with a rumbling stomach!

Thankfully of the many kids God has given me, only one has been through what i went through.. boarding school at a young age!

Gook Akanga

UAH forumist in Uganda

museveni jet is a sign of selfishness

Fellow ugandans,

You have to remember the reasons which were cited by the administration for the sell off of Ugandan airlines routes-the price of gas, insurance and maintenance. To maintain one of these jets, for simple trips like flying from Uganda to Kenya, costs in the excess of $20,000 US dollars, and that might be an lower estimate. Does the president not realize, what an extra $20,000 a month could accomplish at any of our hospitals?

This is indeed a very selfish act by a man who has asked every Ugandan to tighten their belts. A complete turn about from our hero, who authored the book “What is Africa’s problem” The YKM who authored the book above, would definitely convict this new YKM- and that is the dichotomy that we are all trying to grapple with as students of African philosophy and progress. Nyerere his mentor would have never acted this selfishly.

Therefore, it is not only the cost of the plane that is worrisome; it is maintenance, insurance and gas, all costs that have to be put into consideration. Our outcry, does not emanate from the simplistic want of our president to not look presidential in his many travels, NO! we are seriously questioning the wisdom, practicability, the audacity to put such an expensive self-interest item ahead of all the matters of life and death that are a daily plague in the country he has lead for 23 year, matters that he claims are brought on by the lack of resources.

Worse still, we rallied for debt forgiveness, citing poverty as the reason for not being able to pay back our creditors-how does the president dryly look these folks in the eyes? The countries that forgave us such huge debts, with a promise of turning debt service monies into the re-building of our infrastructure to effectively service poor masses. Does he say to them, well, among the few items we have bought with that debt forgiven windfall, is a new Lear jet; it does not make dry sense to me.

Talk about owning a Cadillac in the Ghetto-while collecting welfare food stamps. The president has definitely lost his priorities the country cannot afford such luxuries-when our schools lack roof tops and books and people are dying in our hospitals at such an alarming rate, due to lack of resources. A days worth of jet fuel, could furnish an entire wing of a hospital in Kabale, Mabara or Kawolo-hospital, yes on jinja road where all the accident victims go, which still has an operation theater that is the age of Owen falls dam.

It is a shame indeed If I had a close up opportunity with the president, I would like to ask him-whether we should burn his books, because amidst the suffering his beautiful words on paper back have not born out his deeds.


Land titles are now useless in Uganda

It is the truth.  I repeat the market for land collapsed long ago. And it collapsed because the govt messed up with the incentive structures.  Actually several things are happening simultaneously in the land sector.  The land bill Act of 1998 or 1997 offered full insurance to land squatters/bibanja holders/and so called bonafide land tenants (read land grabbers). I equate land to insurance. Once the laws was passed things fell a part literally. There has never been order/certainity in the land sector ever since.  I invite you to wonder why it is that insurance firms discriminate on the basis of age, gender, and even race.

For some strange/stupid reason the cabinet of Uganda wanted to treat every one in the land sector the same. Actually tenants were treated better than mailo land owners which in the insurance industry would be like treating young male better than middle aged women drivers. In other words, the land bill should have taken into consideration quality. Quality of land/location/size etc but also quality in terms of ownership.

To privilege the tenant/bonafide tenant over the mailo land owner was the biggest mistake the bill made. It may be the case that tenant/bibanja holders have groups that represent them but not mailo land owners  because the regime hates them even as the big men in the regime have become the largest land holders in Uganda not by birth, but through land grabbing, okay blackmail purchases. Anyone who cares to know knows that the President Museveni is now the largest land holder in Uganda (that is why he and the twatera embuddu clique eschewed efficient tools such as land taxation).  The consequences are there for all to see: the opposite has happened to the land sector. The order the bill wanted to introduce is no no more.  Truth of the matter is tat the land sector is characterized by chaos and uncertainty.

That chaos and uncertainty has led to the second problem: multiple land titles. Mailo land owners have the original copy which by law-gazette notice -has never been annulled. The crooks with the right connections have duplicate copies.  Mark you, the ministry of lands is a den of thieves who create land titles for the NRMO crowd.   under such an environment, land buyers can never be sure that the land they are buying belongs to the person selling it in the first place.  That is where the lemon problem comes in.

What you saw the IGP doing is the equivalent of what buyers of second hand vehicles in the West do: demand a certificate from govt licensed garage to verify that indeed the car is not a lemon.  It is costly.  With the crime levels in Uganda, the IGP is now in the business of verifying land titles.  How did things get to that level?

Things will get worse not better. I suspect that as Kony terrorized parts of northern Uganda, some ‘bonafide’ tenants may have taken over people’s land.  Mark you the Land Act does not take such developments into consideration. If someone takes over your land and can prove that they have been on that land since 1986 (notice the cut off year) for 10 years, they can invoke the law to protect them.

Basically, the Land Act assumes that if you let -never mind whether you were aware or not-someone on your land for 10, you are deemed to have slept on your rights and therefore out of luck. The bonafide tenants has all the rights to be issued land titles.

The insight I want to emphasize on Ugandans is that if NRMO really wanted to create efficient land use in Uganda, it should have used taxation. All holders of  mailo land holders/other forms of land would be subject to a land tax.  It would have served multiple goals. a) it is more efficient than the current land Act. b) there would be no such uncertainty with regards to land titles and therefore  minimal chaos in the land sector. C) It would have been more equitable in the end.  The logic is that you tax heavily something you do not like(NRMO hates land owner). Those unable to pay the tax on the expansive land would sell to return portions they can afford to pay the tax on.  It is possible the govt could have generated bilions in taxes since land can’t be hidden to vade taxes. I told why taxation was not considered: it would hit the new kids on the land block.

As Justice Wendel Holmes famously observed, taxes is what people pay for civilization. YKM wanted to avoid land taxes for personal reasons and created the current chaos in the land sector.  Similarly, he hoodwinked Ugandans when he abolished the only taxes most people paid so today they have no voice. How can Ugandans complain that YKM is hiring only his relatives when they pay no taxes? If they want that voice they have no choice but pay taxes.

Let the embattled  land holders counter YKM’s land reform with a proposal to be taxed instead on their land holders. NRMO would then have to explain why a revenue starved nation would leave money on the table. As they say kyoyagala kikusezza (you pay dearly for what you treasure). Imagine if the land holders were to call a national press conference and announce that they are willing to be taxed on their land holdings.  Things would interesting would they?

This the what Akerlof talked about. The land market is full of lemons hence the uncertainty. No one can be certain of the land title they hold. It has now become so costly to a level where the IGP checks land titles. The picture of IGP in the NewVision with scared Katoto checking land titles said it all: the land market is Uganda is no more. That is the uncertainty  Akerlof talked about.   The govt offices are responsible for the lemon business. No one can be sure of the land titles they hold.  Former Finaces ministers are not pared and so is NSSF

The point is this, the land sector can be reformed without fragmenting land any further. But to do so, the govt must come up with an upper limit on the amount of land the landless qualify for under the subsidy/land fund.

Let me wade into a controversial region. By all indications, Bunyoro seems to have plentiful of land. But the presence of plentiful land does not mean that Bunyoro’s land should be fragmented or grabbed.  Large scale/’modernized agriculture’ could take place in Bunyoro and in regions where land has not been fragmented.

The people of Bunyoro have a legitimate point when they complain that new arrivals have more land than the indigenous Banyoro.  Should individuals who were landless elsewhere own more land than indigenous Banyoro? That is wrong period.  It is happening because the govt out of stupidity has promised such individuals to access the land fund and buy themselves out.  It is the perfect case of moral hazard. They continue to take over  more and more Bunyoro land and complaining-imagine-that the govt is not doing what it promised: to give them funds from the land fund, my foot, to buy their luxurious lifestyles.

Again the Baganda have a saying that “eyali affude bwalemaara (sp)/he who was all given up for the dead, when he ends up disabled is fine. I equate the almost dead to the landless who should be grateful for whatever little the govt can help them afford.  But they are foolish and would rather live like kings on expansive land holdings.

And let me be clear again. If the land fund is going to be operationalized, priority should go to the indigenous people. In the case of Bunyoro, priority should go to the Banyoro to buy back some of the land but not to finance luxury. That is why the govt should come up with an upper limit. How much land should the landless be facilitated/subsidized to acquire through the land fund? That is perhaps the mother of all questions and to my knowledge no one has asked it yet.

And in the case of Buganda, priority should go towards bibanja holders and not bonafide tenants/aka 1986 creations. But once again, the question is how much land should they be able to buy from the land owners?  Should bibanja holders be able to force the mailo land owner -the land act forces the land owners to sell at Ugs shs 1, 000-to sell them against his/her wish 20, 30, 50, 70, 100% of his/her land? How much should be given up under the law/land Act?  Yes, the incentives have to be properly aligned (emphasis added). The last I checked the land reform is silent on these issues.



Mulago and Nurses should be facilitated enough

Kampala International hospital, the best private hospital in Kampala

Dialysis is not a rocket scientist’s procedure.Extreme caution and great knowledge are essetial in carrying it out  though. There is nothing medical that Mulago will not do if the right personnel is trainned for the appropriate equipment/procedure. Mulago is doing well on removal of prostates, using one of the  most non invasive surgical methods(forget those bloody laporatomies for prostatectomies) I have known in modern medicine. Dr. Kagwa, who trainned in the US is a real shinning star on this one. He will do dialysis in a heart beat if the equipment is in place. Remember so much has been done with olden equipment and obsolete medications( for the west).Prioritising in health investments should not be embattled at all as health is the pivot of our lives.

On the issue of man power,according to the original plan, Mbarara University was to start and  help the  already trained allied health professionals to upgrade into medicine mostly, Medical Assistants now called Clinical officers like their compatriots in Kenya and TZ. But the plans changed when Museveni came onto the political scene. The unfinished university buildings were suddenly occupied by fresh students whom Makerere medical school could not take due to different reasons, space, level of passing etc. In a heartbeat, Cuban doctors were brought in to teach the fresh medical students. This has in the long run become a good thing, but at the same time, there has been a tremendous loss of manpower to be tapped into by not facilitating further education for people who are already in the system.

Nursing is still looked upon in Uganda and yet revered in the US. Bottom line is that the practice of medicine in general is simply based on patient care which is done by a team (forget the hard academic hassles). Many times doctors will do work that one would consider fit for a nurse and a nurse will act as a doctor in times of emergency. A case in point is airway management, say in case of an accident and someone sustains a head injury, is unconscious, bleeding from the nose and mouth  and probably through the ears(bad stuff here). Do you think a nurse at site will stand with arms akimbo saying, OK, this is a doctor’s case, may be a neurologist to see so I will not secure the  airway?

NO, unless she is in the US where legalities and red tape are the order of the day. Remember the first caesarean section was done by a midwife. She managed to save the baby but the mother died. This mentality of overlooking nursing should stop and the nurses be allowed to study more and become nurse practitioners as they do here in the US so that quality care to patients could extend to remote areas of the country as the nurse practitioners would be allowed to open up private clinics just like their colleagues in the US. I am sure they would be able to determine the types of cases and emergencies they would handle and be able to refer the rest in time.

I just remembered the Lines of patients on Rubaga Road that used to zigzag into Dr.Mumpi’s clinic. This was real madness, as one doctor or medical assistant could not accurately investigate, diagnose and treat diseases of all those many people that flocked into his clinic every day. Something has to be done by the government of Uganda to improve the quality of health care as well as improving the training standards of the medical personnel. Buying new text books, introducing high tech equipment and supplying ample sundries for practical work for the students will greatly improve our people’s health. But how will this be possible if the financial resources are wasted on non priorities like buying new presidential jets or when our people have been told not to pay graduated taxes, so that they keep in a happy state(euphoria) , happy enough not to disagree with a selfish Museveni who hates  and fears democracy?

One is tempted to  bet that the books some people used at the Albert cook Library in the 70s, the Cunninghams, the Gray’s Anatomy, Nzarubara’s book  on surgery  are still the same  volumes that  fill that beautiful library annexed to a perennially blocked private place, while the modern world is writing new books with new information almost every day! This is our Uganda and its president of 23 years.

Jenifer Biri

Ugandan resident in New York/UAH member

‘Tutsi’ are the only Ugandans in Museveni’s book


You observation below is well noted! That stated, Mucebeni has undertaken a deliberate  policy measure to frustrate the advancement  and aspiration of many citizens of Uganda  who are not Tutsi.

  • Only Tutsi are allowed to get government loans to set up business.
  • Only Tutsi are provided with government  scholarship  to study abroad,
  • Only Tutsi occupy prominent Government positions in any ministry

When a  journalist asked  Museveni about this apparent discrepancies which tends to favour tutsis in all aspects of the Uganda social, political and economic life , Museveni had the audacity to tell  the journalist  that  mbu Tutsis  seem to have all the favour because they are well read and smart .Other people from other parts  of Uganda … like in Northern Uganda are simply backwards and primitive.

Yet it is museveni’s policies of creating wars for 20 years and counting which has lead to dismal academic performance of Students in Northern Uganda. In Buganda, biting poverty has rendered most parents incapable of financing their children education in Good schools! And if some how a smart Muganda  kid reaches the University and obtains that degree  guess what… the kid never obtains any kind of employment. This has really frustrated many fellow citizens in Buganda.

And now Museveni is working hard to deprive citizens of the one thing they are still hanging on for survival… that is land!!! Once he grabs all the land and hands them over to Tutsi, people will really have no means to survive! You simply die a pauper!!!Something really must be done!!…

Matek Kopoko

Old Student of Buganda Road Primary School/UPC Activist and now resides in USA


Dear Netters,

Thanks for responding to the subject of witch-doctors intimidating and causing untold fear amongst the Uganda population to the point of believing  lies and tricks of witch-doctors in attracting people to believe that human sacrifice of calousily killing young girls and boys in the unfounded hope of acquiring wealth from such barbaric acts.

One characteristic of all the respondents is that nobody has hit at the effective solution. Nobody has agreed that practitioners of witch-craft are basically honest, genuine people but who act ignorantly.

Only education of their minds will remove their ignorance. And this can only be carried out in the education system begining in the prirmary, secondary and at university level.

The press can play an effective role, but people like Kalundi Serumaga fear to antagonise witch-dcotors. Killing innocent young girls and boys should invite sympathy but Serumaga has never presented a programme to condemn this practice for fear of antagonising witch-doctors.

Most  netters are saying that witch-craft be criminalised and the Police Force be awakened to take strong action against practitioners of witch-craft.
The laws against witch-craft are there, but are they enforced.

The great weakness of these proposals is that the majority of Ugandaans, including the Police Force and the judiciary are all of them believers in witch-craft hence they cannot take  action against witch-doctors.

In addition to that, and we have established these facts in our book UNVEILING WTICH-CRAFT these people are intimidated into fearing the repurcusions of witch-dcotors. Fear of witch-doctors makes law enforcers, the Police and the Press,  to fear to take action against them. They fear to be cursed and to be possessed by the devil, they fear to be be-witched by witch-doctors.

This fear is based on ignorannce of the highest degree.

The only solution is to remmove fear from our people.  Fear can only be removed if they are convinced from the bottom of their hearts that the witch-doctor has not power to send spirits to attack anybody. We have established that there are no such spirits known as amayembe, lubaale, emizimu, ebyookoola, ebyomunju, etc.

In our book we demonstrate very clearly the basis of how witch-doctors claim to possess such powers. We have converted hundreds of thousands of witch-doctors who have spilled the beans on how they deceived and trick people.

Netters have asked me whether we have approached the ministry of education and other law makers to educate the population about these lies and tricks of witch-dcotrs.

Yes, we have approached the highest authorities in Uganda. We have written letters to H.E. President Museveni, and the MInister of Presidential aAffairs, Hon Wabudeya, and the PPS in the President’s office, Hon. Amelia Kyambadde. The latter had even made an appointment for us to meet the President but some how it did not materialise.

We have approached Makerere University and delivered complimentary copies to relevant departments like that of Sociology, Psychology, Education, Anthropolgy, Religious Affairs, The Faculty of Law,etc

The Presidents office invited us to meet Canon Ruhunda who is incharge of Religious Affairs in HE’s office. We carried two ex-witch-doctors to his office, and all the spirits and other paraphernalia witch-doctors use in the spirits shrines and demonstratred how  they tell lies and how they change their voices to sound like spirits and how they make horns (amayembe) walk about and how they make them talk.

WE were invited at  Makerere Institute of Languages where the department of Anthropology operates from and  we carried  two ex-witchdoctors who demonstrated how they make spirits (horns) and lubaale, talk and walk about.

Briefly, we showed how witch-doctors capitalise on the gullibility of the population to deceive them.

At this stage Ugandans should be abhorred by the story of the young girl who was so calously placed in a ditch, alive and watching every activity going on, sand poured over her and made her die a very painful death.

In civilised societies such a story would prop up in Parliament and the Minister of security would be put on the carpet, indeed, the Government would be forced to resign if the culprit is not found and prosecuted.

Briefly, the solution is to criticlly read that book and analyse it and see how our findings can help educate the minds of the people so that they no longer succumb to witch-doctors lies and tricks. It is only after fear of witch-doctors has been removed that we can face them and refuse to kill young girls and boys for their body parts to prescribe medicine for acquiring wealth.

We also approached the Minsitry of Education and donated five books to all the ministers in that ministry and their commissioners.

But, dear netters, we have never even received a letter acknowledging receipt of our donations. And this subject has never been even mentioned in the minisrtry.

Our suspicion is that these officers are themselves believers in witch-craft hence they cannot take action that will remove what they believe in. Or, they are so effectively intimidated by the thought that witch-doctors will attack them if they take action.

Henry Ford Mirima


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