Kawanga named new commissioner for Masaka district

By Sania Babirye

Opposition Democratic Party member John Baptist Kawanga has been named new Masaka District service commissioner by the council.

Kawanga who is also a former member of Parliament for Masaka municipality has been appointed by the Masaka District Executive committee.

According to Jude Mbabali the Masaka LC5 chairman Masaka district, he proposed Kawanga’s name as a person fit for the said job after consultation with various stakeholders to the district executive committee.

The District executive committee then unanimously recommended him to the district council which approved him.

Mbabali says he trusts that Kawanga will do his work with due diligent due to his good track record.

Man to face court for murdering two people including own girlfriend

By Robert Segawa
Police together with internal security organization (ISO) have this morning recovered a body of 24 year old girl who was murdered by her boyfriend, Who later drove the body from Kampala and dumped it in Jongoza village in Kalisizo town council.

Security agencies stormed Jongoza village amid tight security with the killer Deo Mukisa Magombe who took them to the swamp where he dumped the body of Zuhurah Namusoke whom he killed by poisoning . Mukisa accuses the deceased of stealing his money amounting to 250,000 shillings.

The arrest comes shortly after security agencies on 30th January 2019 arrested him for allegedly kidnapping and murdering Elvis Kibule a 4 year old boy.

According to Luke Owoyesigyire the Kampala metropolitan the deputy police spokesperson, police investigation led them to arrest Deo Mukisa Magombe who later confessed to have Kidnapped Kibule a son of Kironde Ronald resident of Nakabugo village and asked ransom of 500,000|= shillings.

Magombe told the police that, he tied the toddler in a swamp and started demanding for money from the parents who later mobilized 250,000 shillings but again he went on and killed the boy later, his body was recovered from Lubijji swamp.

Owoyesigire also adds that he also confessed to the murder by poisoning of his girlfriend Zuhurah Namusoke and led them to Lubijji where he dumped the body. A search by police, ISO in Lubijji did not materialize until he remembered that he transported the body to Kalisizo where it was recovered.

According to officer in charge of Kalisizo police station Innocent Tusiime, the body was seen by area residents of Jongoza who informed the police which picked the body and was taken to Kalisizo health center for postmortem and was buried at Kalisizo town council cemetery after no one claimed it.

This morning OC Tumusiime said police was waiting for a court order from Masaka magistrate court to exhume the body from cemetery and hand it over to the family members for burial.
The suspect Deo Mukisa Magombe will appear in courts of law on murder charges after the investigation.

Police hunting for drivers who caused the deadly Masaka road accident

By Robert Segawa
Police has intensified the Fika Salama operations along major highways in the country following an accident on Sunday along Masaka -Kampala highway.
Speaking to journalists at police headquarters in Naguru on Monday, traffic police director Dr.Stephen Kasiima said they had relaxed on motorists but said they will now arrest any offender violating traffic regulations.
He said in the past police was concentrating on giving express penalties .
Kasiima also said the police is looking for the reckless drivers that caused the deadly accident left all occupants in Premio dead and 12 nursing injuries in Gombe hospital.
According to Kasiima this accident was caused by recklessness of the taxi driver identified as Moses Ssentongo who was over taking in wrong area.
He noted they have teamed up with an American based NGO so as to sensitize passengers in taxis and bus on their rights.

Buganda anti corruption coalition blames IGG for unattended corruption cases

The Inspectorate of Government is under the spotlight for alleged failure to act on five corruption cases reported by South Buganda Anti-Corruption Coalition.

In 2015, South Buganda Anti-corruption Coalition, which operates in Greater Masaka region, submitted five petitions from Masaka district of alleged corruption to the regional office of the Inspectorate of Government.

The petitions include a report pinning Joseph Kimbowa, the former Masaka Town Clerk for allegedly selling off a plot of land in the newly constructed Nyendo market to Issa Lubega, a businessman based in Nyendo without council approval.  He reportedly forged council minutes to back the transaction and pocketed Shillings 28 million from the businessman.

The minutes were disowned by the council led by the Former Speaker Masaka Municipality, Steven Lukyamuzi. The council asked the IGG to investigate Kimbowa for forgery and abuse of office. Kimbowa declined to comment on the matter.

Other cases include the disputed allocation of part of the National Water and Sewerage Corporation (NWSC) land, which hosts the Masaka water treatment center  to local businessman Gerald Kasozi by Masaka District Land Board.

The other petition is about the allocation of the Mayor’s chambers to Brig. Silver Kayemba at the cost of Shillings 800 million without council approval.Charles Kasibante Kibabilire, the Deputy Executive Director of South Buganda anti-Corruption Coalition, says they expected the Inspectorate of Government to expedite investigations in the cases and take action, but nothing has been done.

Kasibante says they are considering dragging the implicated officers to court, since the Inspectorate of Government has failed to consider their reports and take action. Denis Lukanga Majwala, the LC III Chairperson Katwe-Butego Division, says they haven’t felt the impact of the office of the IGG in Masaka district.

According to Majwala, there are several corruption allegations in Masaka municipality, but the Inspectorate hasn’t picked them up. He cites the illegal allocation of the street parking business without a formal contract.

However, officials from the Inspectorate of Government in Masaka, say they are doing their best. One of the officials told URN on condition of anonymity, since he isn’t authorized to speak to the media, that some of the files were allocated to an official who is on maternity leave.

The officer declined to divulge further details and instead referred URN to the spokesperson of the Inspectorate of Government, Munira Ali. Our calls to Munira went without response by the time of filing this story.




Masaka traders frustrated that poor infrastructure is retarding the growth of the municipality

Poor road infrastructure and unstable power supply are key factors frustrating the growth of investment in Masaka municipality, according to local investors. This is contained in a petition from the investors to the Greater Masaka Consortium, an association of local governments in the region.

Led by Dr. Fulgensio Jjuujo, the Chairperson Masaka Investor’s Association, the local businessmen say the poor road network and power outages are frustrating investment in Masaka. Masaka municipality been slow at attracting big investments since the 1979 war, which saw it bombed flat.

It also suffered some of the effects of the National Resistance Army liberation struggle. Despite this some business people have injected huge sums of money in key investments in the municipality.

Some of the notable investors are Sarah Kiyimba, the proprietor Hotel Brovad, Dr. Fulgesio Jjuko, the proprietor Garden Courts Hotel and Tropic Inn Hotel, Joseph Kiyimba of Ambiance Discotheque, Emmanuel Lwasa of Tervan Kicking Discotheque and Lwasa Gardens.

Dr. Fulgensio Jjuujo, the Chairperson Masaka Investor’s Association, says majority of the roads in Masaka town are in a very sorry state, which directly affects their investments. He says the poor roads scare away other would be investors.

The investors cite the road connecting Nyendo township to Masaka municipality, which they say hasn’t had any major rehabilitation for years. Nyendo road is under the management of Uganda National Roads Authority. Paul Muwanga, the proprietor of Nandis Hotel at Bwala Hill, says the municipality has failed to work on the road connecting Masaka town from Kidda.

He says the dust from the road is scary, which prompted him to devise of blocking it from entering his hotel. Emmanuel Lwasa, the proprietor of Lwasa Events which owns Tervan Kicking Discotheque and Lwasa Gardens in Kyabakuza also had to open his own access route to his investment. He is now counting on the Municipality to tarmac the road connecting to his businesses.

Matia Ssamula, the proprietor of Welding Center in Masaka town decries the persistent power outages, saying he has suffered several losses. According to Ssamula, Masaka municipality hasn’t had stable power since 2010. Ssamula says he has an order to weld windows, doors and gate but he isn’t sure whether he will deliver on time because of unreliable power supply.

He is worried that the first school term might start before he delivers on the orders, which isn’t good for his business. Godfrey Kayemba, the Masaka Mayor admits the poor road network. He however, says they expect to work on key roads by close of the year with funding from World Bank.

Kayemba says much as the municipality would love to open all roads, they don’t have money to work on them. Patra Kyarisiima, the Masaka Umeme Area Manager declined to comment on the unstable power supply.





Masaka MP loses seat

By Sania Babirye

The High court in Masaka has nullified the election of Amos Mandela as the Buyamba county Member of Parliament.

Former Makerere guild president Ivan Bwowe sued Mandela on grounds that he did not possess the required qualification, and used forged academic papers for nomination.

The court ruled that both his O and A level transcripts had different names one in the names of Majara Amos while another had the names Amos Madala.

Photo: URN

Court orders Police to produce former town Mayor

By Robert Ssegawa

Court has ordered   Police in Masaka to produce former town Mayor John Tebyasa Matovu in court dead or alive.

Masaka high court judge  Flavin Zaijja has ordered the Masaka regional Police commander Maxwell Ogwal and DPC Masaka  Chrysostom  Mwawule  to produce Matuvu  seven days.

Justice Zaijja made the order after  Matovu’s  wife  Adrona Nyindombi told court that she does not know where her husband is  after he was picked up by police on July 3rd and taken to unknown place.

Photo: www.monitor.co.ug

Masaka police arrests conman impersonating as judicial office

Police are holding a man accused of impersonating judicial officers at Masaka Magistrate’s court. Martin Kawunde was picked up on Tuesday at Masaka Magistrate’s court where he was found extorting money from a resident to allegedly fast track his case file.

He had reportedly received unspecified amount of money from several people seeking services at the court. Samuel Munobe, the Masaka Chief Magistrate, says they decided to lay a trap after receiving complaints of extortion from the general public.

According to Munobe, they found Kawunde hanging in the court corridors while three other men and women were sitting in the Magistrate’s chambers. He says they managed to pick up Kawunde when they found him receiving money from unsuspecting residents.

Information obtained from Masaka Magistrate’s court shows that unscrupulous people have penetrated the judiciary to con unsuspecting members of the public. The suspects pose as magistrates, court clerks, and brokers. Capital

Munobe says they have introduced a special registry at the court entrance to keep tabs and register all people entering court.

Musa Musisi is one of the con victims. Musisi claims a man he identifies as Emanuel Ddamulira approached him demanding for a bribe of Shillings 300,000 to expedite the handling of his land case but he has spent a week without seeing him at Masaka court.

But Martin Kawunde, who is being held at Masaka central police station, denies the allegations of leveled against him. According to Kwaunde, he was arrested for trying to speak to the magistrate on some matter before court.

David Bakibiinga, the Principal State Attorney Masaka district, says there is an increasing number of conmen extorting money from the public. According to Bakibiinga, they have also received strange reports with some members of the public accusing them of failing to work on their files yet they gave them facilitation.


Heavy duty Lorry goes up in flames in Lukaaya

By Robert Ssegawa
There was panic at Uganda national road authority Weigh Bridge in Lukaaya after a lorry carrying  sand went up in flames this morning. The Mercedes Benz truck registration number UAZ 597D was heading to Kampala. Latif Zakke DPC Kalungu says they could not put out the fire because they did not have enough manpower to do that.
He adds that they called for a fire brigade from Masaka but were told the machine was not functional.

Masaka Municipality suffers losses as private developers bribe to have plans approved

Masaka Municipality is losing millions of Shillings as private developers erect buildings without approved physical plans. The problem is blamed on corruption and thin number of staff in the physical planning department to enforce the physical planning regulations.

Approving a square meter on each physical plan costs Shillings 1000. However, a report by Masaka Municipality Technical Committee shows that dozens of unapproved buildings have sprung up. Uganda Radio Network has seen a list of ten buildings earmarked for demolition on grounds that they built illegally.

Last year, Masaka municipality demolished a commercial building belonging to Frank Tekaya, along Bukakata road in Nyendo trading center on grounds that it was erected in the road reserve. Tekaya dragged Masaka municipality to court for demolishing his building despite the fact that he had an approved plan.

Court ruled in favor of Tekaya and ordered Masaka Municipality to compensate him Shillings 800 million for illegally demolishing his building. The municipality has however appealed against the compensation. Tekaya claims that he met all physical planning requirements and paid for all the processes involved.

Joseph Kimbowa, the Masaka town Clerk says Tekaya’s plan was irregularly approved.

Kimbowa says although the physical planner, environment officer and health officer are supposed to issue permits, they don’t have a final say on the approval of the building plans, saying the powers lie in his office. According to Kimbowa, currently they only have a single physical planner yet it division has to have a planner.

He says the municipality is losing millions of Shillings in local revenue because many developers to pay for the approval of their building plans. According to Kimbowa, they have launched investigations into the physical plans of more than 40 new buildings in the municipality.

Martin Kigozi, the Physical Planner of Masaka Municipality, declined to comment on the matter, saying he isn’t authorized to speak to the media. However, many of the developers accused of flouting the physical planning regulations claim their plans are approved by the authorities.

One of the developers accused of building in the road reserve along Kidda road insists that their plan was approved by the municipality but declined to show our reporters copies of his plan. Joseph Lukwago, an Architect in Masaka town blames the physical planning on corruption and rampant transfer of civil servants.

Godfrey Kayemba, the Mayor Masaka Mayor Municipality says they need over 10 people to fill the vacant posts in the physical planning department. He however, they can’t recruit the required personnel without approval from the Public Service Ministry.

Last financial year, Masaka Municipality only realised 1.2 billion out of the projected Shillings 2 billion local revenue collection. Approval of building plans and permits is expected to generate at least 10 percent of the required revenue.