Museveni: Wanume Kibedi Resignation from Amin Cabinet Boosted NRA Struggle

Museveni lays a wreath on the casket containing Kibedi's remains in Igaga on Saturday

President Museveni has described departed former Minister Wanume Kibedi as a ‘patriot’ and ‘Pan Africanist’ who fought to liberate the country from previous dictatorships.

The ex Minister of Foreign Affairs from January 1971 to January 1973 passed away in June at St. Thomas Hospital in London.

He had long suffered from gout and has been in coma in recent days.

Kibedi gave support to NRM in the 1980s during the Bush War.

On taking power, sale President Museveni appointed him Ambassador to the United Nations and later Ambassador to the Soviet Union.

This Saturday, Museveni joined mourners in Iganga to bury the deceased.

“He served as foreign affairs minister in the Amin regime before quitting. Kibedi also was our Permanent Representative at the UN,” said Museveni.

“I salute him for his contribution to the struggle that liberated Uganda from dictatorship,” the president added.

“Kibedi belonged to a generation that did its historical duty; a generation that dealt with a lot of problems. Uganda then was full of uncertainty but Kibedi was among those who took a line of patriotism and Pan-Africanism which later matured into peace for Uganda,” Museveni said in his eulogy.

Amin terror 

Kibedi and his sister Mama Maryamu Kibedi Amin, made a tough choice in 1973 when President Idi Amin, who was Kibedi’s brother in law, murdered former Obote 1 Cabinet Minister Shaban Kirunda Nkutu. Nkutu was an uncle to the Kibedis, who considered him a father.

Kibedi was attending an Organization of African Unity Conference meeting of Foreign Ministers in Ghana when he learnt of Nkutu’s murder and the disappearance of his body.

On confirming that Nkutu was dead and President Amin was responsible, Kibedi immediately announced his resignation from the Cabinet and denounced his brother in law, President Amin, as a murderer.

He spent decades in exile in Britain, where he ran a successful law practice, Kibedi and Co. Advocates, at Lewisham High Street in London.

He later linked up with his cousin Kivejinja, who was working in the NRM’s External Wing, to support the war effort.

The murder of Shaban Nkutu also came between Amin and his senior wife, Maryamu Kibedi, sibling to Wanume, who was known to the country as Mama Maryamu.

The violent death of her uncle at the hands of her husband forced the First Lady to abandon her children at State House and flee the country via the Kenya border.

Amin declared her divorced. Vice President Daniel arap Moi helped her to find safety in Britain where she has lived a traumatized life.


Museveni recalled that, “Kibedi’s resignation from the Amin cabinet and that of others was a big boost to our struggle because it exposed the regime.”

He added: “I commend him for raising his family even while he lived in exile. His children and others should emulate him.”

Kibedi was descended from the Baisemenhya, one of the 11 royal clans of Busoga, who trace their ancestry to the Bunyoro royal family as descendants of former Omukama Agutamba Nyamutukura, who reigned in the 19th century.

Kibedi’s late father was one of the first Basoga to go to school and he was a headmaster of Busoga College Mwiri.


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