In a significant blow to Buganda Kingdom, President Museveni on Saturday said CBS radio will not be re-opened until Kabaka and clan leaders hold talks with him on a matter that has caused discontent in the country.
President Museveni also used the funeral of the late retired Bishop of Masaka Diocese, Adrian Ddungu, who passed away on Tuesday to re-launch his attacks on opposition politicians, whom he accused of hiding behind the Kabaka and CBS radio to fight political wars.
“….reopening of CBS radio will be after full consultation with the Kabaka, and the clan leaders,” Mr Museveni told mourners at the late Bishop Ddungu’s burial service at Villa Maria, Masaka District, adding: “These are the people with whom I discussed the return of the Buganda Kingdom.”
However, Mr Museveni’s comments pre-empt the outcome of the on-going talks between the 11-member Cabinet sub-committee chaired by the ICT Minister Agrey Awori and the closed CBS board of directors.
When contacted yesterday, Mr Awori said: “For us we are going ahead with our work and we hope to submit our report to the President to decide. By the end of January our report will be ready and it will be upon the President to re-open CBS or not.”
It’s not known when these talks will take place —dampening hopes of any immediately re-opening of the radio station.
Mengo Minister for Local Government and Mobilisation Jolly Lutaaya had in his speech appealed to the President to forgive the wrongs that were committed by CBS radio and grant its reopening.
However in his response, the President said he would need to be reassured that CBS radio will not engage in what he described as “subversive broadcasting, sectarianism, and inciting violence” before it is allowed to reopen.
In direct reference to the Institution of the Kabaka, Mr Museveni said: “It is dangerous for the institution to allow politicians to hide in it.”
Museveni put conditions
“Before the restoration of the Kabakaship, I held consultations with the Kabaka himself and clan leaders like Omutaka Ndugwa, Omutaka Nadduli and Omutaka Kaita, with a condition not to mix the Kabaka with politics,” Mr Museveni said.
“Peter Mayiga (Buganda’s information Minister) was not around. He is just an opportunist who knows nothing about culture. It took me a lot to convince the Army Council to approve of the idea. Now the likes of Mayiga have messed up the whole issue. He is just an idler whose only job is to abuse Museveni on radio.”
CBS was closed after violent riots broke out in parts of Buganda last year (September 10-12) after the government blocked the Kabaka from visiting Kayunga District. As a result of the clashes, 27 people were killed.