DP releases roadmap for 2021 elections

By Robert Segawa

Opposition Democratic Party ( DP) has released it’s road map towards the forth coming general elections 2021.

Addressing the media at the party headquarters in Kampala the National organizing secretary of the party, Suleiman Kidandala, said the party will hold it’s delegates conference between 28th-31st March 2020 where they will elect the new party president and other flag bearers.

Before the delegates conference there will be registration of party members at village level from 14th-26th January.

Kidandala added that there will be elections of party executives at village to district level from 26th January to 9th march.

Meanwhile party representatives from constituency and districts will represent the lower levels in the national delegates conference .

FDC vows to continue with regional celebrations

The opposition Forum for Democratic Change ( FDC ) has vowed to continue with their planned regional fifteen years celebrations in different districts across the country despite being blocked by police earlier on Monday.

Police on Monday blocked party president Patrick Amuriat Obbo from holding celebrations in Soroti and arrested Dr. Kizza Besigye from Jinja on his way to the venue , many of his party followers were also arrested from Mbale.

Patrick Amuriat the party president says that they’ll continue with their celebration programs and will hold their celebration in Western Uganda tomorrow.

He further adds that they will also review what exactly caused the arrests Party members during their activities on Monday.

More extension workers needed to improve agricultural produce

By Deo Wasswa

The government is set to recruit additional extension workers to assist farmers on best practices to improve the quality and standards of agricultural produce.

Speaking at annual stake holders meeting organized by Sasakawa Africa, an orgnisation advocating for smart agriculture and agriculture best practices, Beatrice Namaloba, principal agricultural extension coordinator at Ministry of agriculture noted that substandard agriculture produces has remained a major challenge for agriculture sector especially when marketing the products on international market. She says this year , Ministry of Agriculture’s emphasis will be on increasing extension workers to help on addressing the matter.

According to Namaloba the ratio of extension workers to Farmers in Uganda currently standards at 1:1800 and as government want to bring it down at least to 1:500.

She added that on top of recruiting additional extension workers, the ministry is also looking at introducing other models such as e-extension where farmers will need to visit internet and understand the solution to problems that are likely to affects their gardens.

She says introduction of Village extension assistant will be also looked up on as another possible model.

FDC set to elect a flag bearer

By Deo Wasswa
Opposition Forum for Democratic Change party has commenced its preparations for presidential flag bearer elections for the 2021 elections says party deputy spokesperson Jonh Kikonyogo.

Kikonyogo said that since their consultation meetings come to an end this month ,they will soon be advertising the post for the suitable party members to apply.

He says that the party will hold a delegates conference and select the flag bearer out of those who will apply.He adds that the party is set to release the road map to this effect before the end of this month, January 2020.

He says that those planning to contest for this post should prepare all the required documents.

Police hunting for site engineers of collapsed building in jinja

By Robert Segawa

Police have revealed that they have sent special teams to Jinja to look for the site engineer and chief supervisor of the building that collapsed last week at Madhivan Village in Jinja district.

Addressing a press conference at police headquarters Naguru Polly Namaye the deputy police spokesperson noted that police has sent a team to establish whether the site engineer of the collapsed building was accredited and qualified .
Namaye also revealed that they saved 12 people from the building eight of which are in a critical situation.Five bodies were retrieved, four were identified and one remains unidentified

Namaye advised the stake holders in construction like the city planners to always do their work of monitoring construction sites to prevent incidences of collapsed building.

Former Mulago pharmacist faces jail over ISO director’s son case

By Sania Babirye

The defense team in a murder case against the son of ISO director Kaka Bagyenda have today presented two witnesses including the suspect’s young brother who informed court that the plea bargaining failed because the victim’s family allegedly asked for 170 million which they did not have.

Anorld Asiimwe , a younger brother to Brian Bagyenda has informed Kampala high court judge Moses Kawumi Kazibwe that the deceased’s family only could allow a liner sentence for Bagyenda if his family paid the said money.

Asiimwe today, appeared as the second defense witness for his brother who chose to stay silent as his defense.

Asiimwe further revealed that Brian Bagyenda once suffered depression and was admitted to Butabiika Mental referral hospital .

Asiimwe ‘s evidence has been collaborated with that of a Butabika Mental hospital psychiatrist doctor Brian Mutamba who has also confirmed to court that in October 2016 ,he treated Bagyenda for depression until such a time when his family picked him and began treatment as an out -patient.

Dr. Mutamba who was the first defense witness testified that Bagyenda also developed suicidal thoughts that would trigger him to end his own life .

The case has been Now adjourned to Monday next week for the last defense witness a nun ; sister Jane Frances Nantamu who examined Bagyenda to testify .

Meanwhile,the defense had also listed Kaka Bagyenda as a defense witness and was expected today but he did not show up.

Brian Bagyenda is charged with the murder of his girlfriend Enid Twijukye ; a former student of Ndejje University.

His co -accused Innocent Bainomugisha ; a cleaner and Vincent Rwahwire a casual laborer each gave their sworn in testimony denying any involvement in the 2016 murder of then 22 year old Twijukye whose decomposing body was recovered by police dumped in Namanve forest .

During the trial, Bagyenda’s lawyer Nsubuga Mubiru had contested prosecution’s evidence including a medical report which showed that Bagyenda was mentally normal at the time of the committal of the said murder.

According to Nsubuga, his client was suffering from severe depression episodes and suicidal anxiety symptoms and had been admitted to Butabika for treatment although he left the hospital on the orders of his father before finishing the said treatment.

Nsubuga further faulted the police from failing to subject Bagyenda to a proper medical mental examination from a real psychiatrist and not a general police surgeon who spent only 15-30 minutes with him and ruled that he was mentally normal.

However, justice Kazibwe over ruled all his submissions and accepted the doctor’s medical report as evidence against Bagyenda.

Justice Kazibwe also allowed a charge and caution statement made by Bagyenda in which he confessed to have hired his two co accused to attack his girlfriend in his home after finding love messages in her phone from another man as he stood watching but denied that he did not know that they were going to kill her.

However, in a charge and caution statement made by Innocent Bainomugisha, he stated that Bagyenda had hired them to force the victim to return his 4 million shillings she allegedly stole and refused to return and that they tied the victim both hands and legs using pillows and left her alive with Bagyenda.

Bagyenda is a former Pharmacist at Mulago government referral Hospital and the girlfriend was a student at Ndejje University.

Prosecution says the trio committed the offense at Njobe road in Luzira Nakawa Division at the home of Brian Bagyenda before dumping Twijukye’s body in Namanve forest where it was later recovered by police.

Only 55 will participate in the NRM delegates conference

By Moses Kidandi

Following the creation of new districts between 2016 and 2019, the National Resistance Movement Electoral Commission (NRM-EC) is set to conduct party structural elections in a total of 55 new electoral areas.

This will include twenty three new districts, twenty one old districts, seven municipalities and four districts with special cases such as the death of chairpersons among others.

This was revealed by the Party Electoral Commission Chairman Dr.Tanga Odoi saying that these elections will be held on Tuesday, January 21st before the consultations of all aspirants from their electorates from16th to 21st this month.

The elective positions at municipal level include the Youth League, Women League, Elders League, Veterans League and People with Disabilities League and at the district-level they will vote for Youth League, Women’s League, Elders League, Veterans League, People With Disabilities’ league, workers’ league, and Entrepreneurs’ League.

Odoi says that those aspiring for the above positions don’t require any qualification, however, he warned old chairpersons in old districts not to influence elections in new districts and municipalities.

He also revealed that they are to spend 2.8 million shillings in the 55 new districts and municipalities.

Results of 1,512 pupils withheld by UNEB

By Deo Wasswa

Uganda National Examinations Board has withheld results of 1,512 pupils who sat for the 2019 primary leaving examinations.

Releasing the results,the executive secretary of UNEB Daniel Odongo says that although the examination was Conducted smoothly,cases of malpractice in some schools were reported .

He says that these were mainly cases of external assistance given to candidates by third parties inside the examination rooms.

He also says that there were several instances of fake papers circulated prior to the exams and 61 people have since been arrested from various parts of the country.

He says that with approval from the ministry of education,they are withholding the results of 1,512 pupils until investigations are completed.

He however says that this number is much lower that the 3,346, canceled results for 2018.

He says that all candidates whose results are being withheld will be given a fair hearing by UNEB security committee and those who will be cleared will have their results released

Janet Museveni : Cheating in schools show inadequacies in the education system

By Deo Wasswa
Minister for education and sports, Janet Kataha Museveni has noted with great concern the increasing number of teachers are getting involved in circulation of fake examination papers to make money. Sadly, many schools fell victim of this and taught their candidates through the night, only for poor learners to find that the examination papers had very different content.

She noted this while releasing 2019 Primary leaving examination at Kampala parents school.

According to Janet, the corrupt and fraudulent action of these teachers caused candidates to perform poorly.

She has also commended the security agencies for arresting many of these criminals and hopes the courts of law will hand down appropriate punishments upon conviction.

She added that when school participate in buying these papers and teaching the content to the candidates overnight , it is a sign of serious inadequacies in the teaching / learning process in schools.

Uganda National Examinations Board has registered an improvement in the performance of the pupils who sat for the 2019 Uganda leaving examinations.

According to UNEB executive secretary Daniel Odongo, out of the Total Number of candidates 695,804 of which 336,040 (48.3) boys and 359,764 (51.7) are female who sat for exams,617,150 (90.4%) passed the exams.

According to the results,69,243 (10.1%) passes with division one,318,155 in second division and 140,420 in third division.

89,332 have passed in the forth division while 66,152 accounting for 9.6% are ungraded.

Odongo says that the performance of this year has improved silently compared to the performance of pupils who sat in 2018.

Attorney General blames piling cases against government on court awards

By Alice Lubwama

The Attorney general William Byaruhanga has blamed the piling up of court awards against government on inadequate staffing of the justice ministry.

While appearing before the legal and parliamentary affairs committee chaired by Oboth Oboth, Byaruhanga revealed that the ministry is only 60% staffed leading to state attorneys miss court dates or have to constantly ask for adjournments.

He said this eventually leads to a judge ruling against government in cases where it has been sued.

He stressed that the ministry is the legal adviser and advocate to government, noting that unlike other ministries limited funding to staffing has a direct bearing on the state coffers pointing out that outstanding court awards now stands at 545bn shillings..

A member of this committee also Gomba west MP Robina Rwakojo castigated the ministry for what she called miserable pay for government lawyers and yet they are some of the best legal minds in the country.

She observed that she had been able to experience the situation first hand having worked as a state attorney in her early career.

The chairperson of the committee Jacob Oboth oboth asked the Attorney general to cost the staff required so that MPs can be able to lobby for the funding.