A Play Of Giants: Cracking Lukwago-Rock of Ages


clinic geneva; font-size: small; line-height: 200%;”>recipe sans-serif;”>Epilogue

stomach geneva; font-size: small; line-height: 200%;”>Normal plays start with a prologue. It is quite absurd that I should begin this one with an epilogue going backwards.

You can hardly resist Ugandan drama, regardless of where you approach it from; you will still enjoy it!

Many, including the minister of Internal Affairs, Gen Aronda Nyakairima, attorney General, Peter Nyombi and Prime Minister, Hon Amama Mbabazi, among others, say that Lukwago is no longer the mayor of Kampala city.

However, thousands as backed by the High Court Judge, Yasin Nyanzi, affirm that Lukwago is still the Lord Mayor.

Controversies have been running all over the place; arguments have resulted into actual battles, arrests and even detentions.

Lukwago was impeached last week and re-instated this week amidst fire and violent proclamations.

We have witnessed the city being paralysed for two weeks because of him.

The Lukwago factor has for a fortnight dominated local news even attracting the attention of foreign media outlets like the BBC.

Why a mere mayor of a city has become the fulcrum of events is something we are yet to discover.

Staging The Play Of Giants

You and I automatically agree that the drama that has been brewing at city hall is the “Shakespearean” type or perhaps the Soyinka breed in which we have seen “A Play of the Giants” being acted and re-enacted.

It does not matter what you and I think but this play must show. It must be staged.

The background to this play is more extensive than you have been imagining but all in all, it will be exposed.


Kampala City Council (KCC) is renamed Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA), a legal entity, established by the Ugandan Parliament to run operations in the city.

In March 2011, Erias Lukwago resigns from Parliament and is elected Lord Mayor of the City of Kampala.

In mid April 2011, Jennifer Musisi is appointed by the president as the first executive director of KCCA.

Sometime later, the minister for presidency, Frank Tumwebaze replaces Kabakumba Masiko in December 2011 as the minister for Kampala.

Then, a row erupts between Lukwago and Musisi regarding the KCCA 2010 Act drafted by the 8th Parliament.

Musisi became the “chief boss” and Lukwago, the ceremonial “underdog”.

1st Disagreement: Uganda Taxi Operators and Drivers Association (UTODA) contract. The drivers paralyse the city with a riot.

2nd Disagreement: Street vendors. Musisi orders their eviction against Lukwago’s advice to get them an alternative first.

3rd Disagreement: KCCA budget. Musisi together with the then minister in charge of Kampala, Kabakumba Masiko present a budget before Parliament. Musisi proposes that she should be paid Shs 43.7 million per month and Lukwago Shs 33 million.

4th Disagreement: Awarding of a contract to city tycoon Hassan Basajabalaba to manage the city abattoir.

Intervention Plan A: Lukwago runs to High Court seeking an interpretation of the KCCA Act as regards his powers.

Backfire: Lukwago loses the court case bringing the ten-month legal battle to an end.

Attack Plan B: A tribunal is formed to investigate Lukwago.

Success: A report finds him guilty of abuse of office, incompetence and misconduct.

Gossip: Musisi and councillors rush to State House Entebbe to receive their big “Thank You”.

Tension: 14 days counter-down to Lukwago’s impeachment.

Counter Intervention Plan C: Lukwago organises a rally to protest the report findings.

Backfire: He is arrested together with Ex-FDC president, Dr Kiiza Besigye and later charged with belonging to an unlawful assembly.

Reaction: Massive protests and teargas.

Counter Intervention Plan D: Lukwago rushes to high court seeking an interim to halt Frank Tumwebaze’s plan of impeaching him.

Aside: New councillors are elected and sworn-in in the mayor’s absence.

Attack Plan E: Frank Tumwebaze leads councillors into impeaching the Lord Mayor. They vote him out.

Reaction: massive protests and teargas.

Aside: High Court issues a statement affirming that it had granted Lukwago an interim order.

Intermission: Tensions mix with disorder from both sides.

Anti-climax: Lukwago appears in court for a ruling.

Climax: High Court rules in his favour. He is still the mayor.

Stages Directions: A procession across the city and suburbs as people Jubilate and celebrate.

Monologue (Lukwago): God is good, really, people of Kampala you have shown me that you can protect your power. I have been tortured and harassed but now all those who have been carrying daggers should put them down. I have big plans for this city. Let us work together.

Complication: Musisi closes City Hall indefinitely.

Soliloquy (Musisi): Management of KCCA has been compelled to enforce a shutdown of all technical operations of the Authority… This decision comes against the backdrop of several months of protracted politicking…Since March 2013, we have been caught as pawns in the tensions of the political push and shove of the City…the ensuing political controversies and violent reactions…have created a hostile working environment that has put the lives of our workers in danger…For God and Our country.

Next, is the denouement and final resolution which will come sooner than you expect.

Well, this two-act stage play could soon hit the records as the greatest masterpiece ever written.

But before we can stage this play, which we will obviously do very soon, let us run through the profiles of our main actors.

Profiles Of The Actors (Titans)

Erias Lukwago (Ssalongo) is a lawyer, politician, ex-member of parliament for central Kampala constituency.

Erias Lukwago

He was born in Kampala on 11 May 1970, to Hajj Muhammad Mirundi and Hajjat Salmati Nkayaga. Lukwago is reported to have more than twenty siblings.

He attended Makerere University (1995-97) and graduated with a Bachelor of Laws (LLB).

He then obtained a diploma in legal practice from Law Development Center (1998) and a certificate in advocacy skills from the International Law Institute.

He has worked as a managing partner of Lukwago and Co. Advocates, served on the Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Committee and on the Local Government Accounts Committee, served as National Legal Adviser to the Democratic Party and as shadow minister for Justice and Constitutional Affairs.

Erias Lukwago is married with Zawedde Lubwama Lukwago and they have five children including twins.

Jennifer Semakula Musisi is a lawyer, public administrator and the executive director of KCCA. She was born in central Uganda.

Jennifer Musisi

Musisi attended Tororo Girls School (S1 – S4), then transferred to King’s College Budo (S5 – S6) and entered Makerere University in graduating in 1986 with a degree of Bachelors of Laws (LLB).

She added a diploma in legal practice from Law Development Center (LDC) and masters in Public Administration (MPA) from Makerere University.

She went ahead to acquire certificates in Management, taxation and law from Harvard Law School and George Washington University.

She has worked as state attorney, Assistant Secretary (Legal Affairs) at Makerere, Deputy Commissioner (Legal) at Uganda Revenue Authority and then rose to Commissioner of Legal and Board Affairs at URA. Musisi is a married mother.

Frank Kagyigyi Tumwebaze is an educator, politician and the minister for the presidency and Kampala city.

Frank Tumwebaze

Tumwebaze is a member of parliament for Kibale county and was born in Kamwenge district around 1 January 1976.

He has a degree of Bachelor of Science with education got from Mbarara University of Science and Technology (MUST) in 1999 and masters in International Diplomatic Studies from Makerere University (2005).

He has worked as a customs officer at URA and Deputy RDC Iganga district (2001-03).

He then rose to a Special Presidential Assistant for Research and Information (2003-2005). Tumwebaze is married.

Catherine Bamugemereire is a Judge at the Anti-Corruption court.

Catherine Bamugemereire

She holds a Law Degree, Post Graduate Diploma from LDC, a Masters Degree and is pursuing a PhD at the University of Surrey in the UK.

She was previously Kampala Chief Magistrate and also worked as an Associate Lecturer at the School of Law, University of Surrey, Guildford, UK.

She is reputed for sentencing city socialite Bad Black on July 12, 2012 and Medi Ssentongo to some good time in Luzira.

She actually upgraded to the celebrity scene recently when she convicted Erias Lukwago leading to his impeachment and overthrow.

This was just Act 1. Like I said, all we need is to wait for the denouement and final resolution of this masterpiece of a melodrama!


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