Supporters of President Museveni’s young brother Godfrey Aine Kaguta, aka, Sodo have castigated him for withdrawing from Mawogola North County Constituency parliamentary race in Sembabule District.
On the eve of the Election Day last week Sodo withdrew from the race citing family issues.
He said the decision to withdraw from the race followed a meeting he had with his family members led by President Museveni and some of his (Sodo) campaign agents at State House, Entebbe on January 10.
“….there were allegations from Kutesa [Sam, the foreign affairs minister] that our supporters were attacking each other. Mzee (President Museveni) decided that I should pull out because if we were fighting then there was nothing we were going to do for the people of Mawogola North Constituency,” Mr Sodo said in an interview with NTV last week.
On the polling day January 14, majority of Sodo’s supporters shunned the election while others rallied behind National Unity Platform ’s (NUP) flag bearer Henry Nyanzi, who came third with 2,346 votes.
Ms Shartis Musherure Kutesa won with 17,274 votes while Sodo only garnered five votes.
Ms Musherure is daughter of Foreign Affairs Minister Sam Kutesa who has also been Mawogola North MP for 26 years.
On the other hand, Mr Sodo is Musherure’s father-in-law since the First Son, Lt Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba married her twin sister Charlotte Kutesa.
Sodo’s supporters said besides withdrawing from the race without consulting them, he completely shunned the election exercise by not casting his vote in the area he earlier wanted to represent.
“He [Sodo] should have stayed behind and guided us on who to vote, but he chose to run away,” Mr Abel Byaruhanga, one of Sodo’s supporters, said on Tuesday.
Mr Byaruhanga claimed Mr Sodo spent the Election Day in Bukanga, Isingiro District guarding Stephen Kangwagye’s votes.
Mr Kangwagye is the incumbent MP for Bukanga County constituency and a son to President Museveni’s cousin, late Adonia Rwakanuuma.
Mr David Walugembe, another Sodo supporter, said they decided to shun the exercise after all their hopes were dashed by the withdrawal of their candidate from the race.
“We shall not forgive him [Sodo] forever and we will never support him even if he is contesting for LC1 chairmanship because he did not only waste our time, but also tortured us psychologically,” he said.
Mr Sodo could not be reached for a comment as our repeated calls to his known telephone number went unanswered.
Reacting on reports that Sodo was forced to withdraw from the race, Mr Sam Kutesa said the former took an independent decision for the good of his party and family.
“Mr Sodo is a mature person and I think he weighed all options before arriving at that decision [of withdrawing from the race]. It was indeed a good gesture for both NRM and our families,” he said.
On politics of succession, Mr Kutesa explained that his daughter did not succeed him because in the traditional Ankole culture, it is a boy, not a girl who succeeds the father.
“This was not about succession. I have many boys who can succeed me, but for this particular role, I found Shartis fit . She has leadership abilities and I am sure she will perform to the expectations of the people of Mawogola North,” he said.
Sodo had defeated Musherure in the hotly contested September 30 NRM primaries in the constituency.
However, the top NRM leadership later tactfully denied Sodo the party flag and advised both candidates to stand as independents to avoid dividing party members in the constituency.
Other people who were in the race included Moses Lyazi of Forum for Democratic Change and independents Salim Kisekka, Christine Nanyanzi, Hilary Tukunane and Ismail Wagaba.
Sodo, 42, was born and raised in Rwakitura, Kiruhura District. He attended Rushere Primary School, Kaaro High School for both O-Level and A- Level and later enrolled at Nkumba University where he obtained a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration in 2006.
Before contesting for Mawogola County Parliament, Sodo was only popular among rally sport drivers having won the 2017 Clubman Rally Championship.
Between 2000 to 2001, he worked as an officer of Special Revenue Protection Services (SRPS) and is currently the executive director GrandTel Engineering & Construction Company Ltd.