We need a Kabaka for Buganda not for Baganda.
Since Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi’s foiled visit to a remote Kayunga district, in eastern Buganda, in September 2009, Uganda’s political landscape has changed quite noticeably. Following the army/police/ military blockade against the Kabaka’s advance team (Prime Minister’s entourage), bloody riots by Baganda youth, Buganda enthusiasts and city goons erupted in Kampala and its suburbs, claiming over thirty lives and unprecedented loss of property worth billions of shillings. CBS radio- Buganda’s mouth piece was closed by government for allegedly inciting ethnic tensions and airing sectarian prejudices. After heavy military and army deployment, Kampala returned to sanity. The president met the Kabaka for the first time in over two years, and reconciliations attempts were made.
With the presidential and general elections early next year, the September 2009 events are threatening to shape Uganda’s political landscape now and in the near future. Kabaka Mutebi’s allies, ministers and henchmen have since jumped into the political arena with blessings from the king himself. Kabaka Mutebi has also used every available forum to urge Baganda to register to vote for next year’s general elections. A pressure group, “Ssubi lya Buganda 2011” (Hope for Buganda 2011) a brain child of the Kabaka’s allies and henchmen is already on the campaign trail gunning for support for candidates that subscribe to Buganda’s ideologies, demands and whims. It is now clear to everyone and more importantly to the NRM regime, that the Kabaka is not a king for launching clan or youth boxing and soccer tourneys, officiating at commissioning of village markets, or popularizing tree planting campaigns. Kabaka Mutebi wants political, social and economic power. He wants a slice of Kampala’s booming real estate business, he wants to influence policy on land, taxation, trade, manufacturing, governance, media etc. So he has dispatched his trusted comrades in the political contests en route the Promised Land (read federo).
But more than ever before, we need a Kabaka for Buganda not for Baganda. From the Wikipedia online encyclopedia, Buganda's boundaries are marked by Lake Victoria to the south, the River Nile to the east, Lake Kyoga to the north and River Kafu to the northwest. To the west, Buganda is bordered by the districts of Isingiro, Kiruhura, Kyenjojo, Kibale, Hoima and Masindi. This implies the great Buganda Kingdom is composed of the following districts- Mubende, Masaka, Luwero, Nankasogora, Nakaseke, Kiboga, Entebbe, Wakiso, Mukono and Kampala. The later three are the centre for Uganda’s economic functions, business, enterprise, administrative infrastructure, health care and tax centres, tourism and recreations hubs, education facilities etc. Furthermore, Buganda is currently inhabited by over twenty local tribes and equal proportion of foreign nations ranging from Chinese, Indians, Pakistanis, Americans, Ethiopians, French etc all engaged in various sectors – administration, civil service, government, enterprise, trade, business, tourism, education, farming, construction, transport, real estate, diplomatic missions, media, humanitarian work etc. So a Kabaka that can’t stick to cultural issues like language, norms and mannerisms, way of dress, exhibition shows, traditional cuisine etc but decides to seek political and socio-economic power and influence, ought to be king/ Kabaka for all the subjects in his territory not just one ethnic tribe(Baganda in particular).
Kampala/ Buganda have the potential of being a regional and international hub for business, tourism, trade, education and enterprise. It hosted the CHOGM in 2007 and is slated to host the 15th African Union Summit in July 2010. With the East African Common Market that comes with a market of over 150 million consumers, free movement of people, goods and services, I want Kabaka that concerns himself with infrastructure development, better trade and business environment, improved tax policy, human resource development, easy access to information technology facilities etc nothing more nothing less. The East African Common Market, COMESA, and all other aspects of globalization that we cherish e.g international trade, media, sport, education, tourism, enterprise, IT, technology advancement, commercial agriculture, entertainment etc have no place for identities as shallow as Banyakole, Baganda, Masai, Jaluo, Hutus etc. We need to see ourselves as global thinkers, entrepreneurs, sportsmen and global citizens at large. I want a Kabaka for the above mentioned in Buganda. We need such a Kabaka; anyone else won’t take us to the promised land (political and Socio-economic prosperity).