Politics

Rugunda Woos Sabiiti back to NRM

Former Rukiga county MP Manzi Tumubweinee, current Rukiga MP and FDC stalwart Jack Sabiiti, Prime Minister Dr Ruhakana Rugunda and parish priest of Kamwezi Catholic Church, Fr A Mugabe, in Kamwezi, Kabale where the Prime Minister was a chief guest at a fundraising event to raise money to roof Kamwezi Catholic Church, in the background on Easter Sunday. (Prime Minister Press Unit photo)

Prime Minister Dr Ruhakana Rugunda has invited Rukiga County MP and Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) strong man Jack Sabiiti to go back to the ruling National Resistance Movement party.

Speaking during a fundraising function for Kamwezi Catholic Church in Rukiga County, Kabale district on Easter Sunday, Dr Rugunda praised Sabiiti for being developmental minded and an effective legislator, but added:

“There is a step which Hon Sabiiti needs to take–to come back to the party that is supported overwhelmingly by the majority of the people of Rukiga County, NRM.”

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The Prime Minister’s remarks drew huge applause from the people who were present.

Jack Sabiiti promptly responded saying he was happy to remain in FDC.

“The Constitution of Uganda allows us to belong to different political parties. I chose to belong to FDC,” he said.

Jack Sabiiti was one of the founding members of NRM who left it to join the opposition FDC.

However, of late, there have been reports that Sabiiti is considering returning to the ruling party, a charge he denies.

Sabiiti, who was FDC’s chief treasurer, has since refused to serve in Mugisha Muntu’s cabinet.

Sabiiti was on Nandala Mafabi’s side when the latter was challenging Muntu for the party’s presidency in one of the most expensive and turbulent internal elections the party witnessed in its history.

Interestingly, Sabiiti recently praised Museveni as a good leader who had transformed his constituency.

“I want to thank you Mr President for causing development in my constituency especially extending power lines, clean water projects and good feeder roads. I thank you because you have demonstrated good leadership skills. FDC and NRM party supporters in my constituency are working in harmony for development,” said the area legislator during the president’s visit of Rukiga in January 2015.

Sabiiti would later explain that his work was very much commended by the president, who observed that his constituency had developed faster than many others in the region.

In an interview with Chimpreports in January, Sabiiti explained that, “Some people are accusing him of joining NRM. Nobody will ever take me back to that party. People should know that I have no price and nothing can be used to lure me back to NRM,” said Sabiiti.

The FDC stalwart said being a developmental person; most of his activities for his constituency require that he puts aside his political affiliation.

“Development knows no political colours.”

Sabiiti praises Rugunda

During the Easter Season, Sabiiti hailed Prime Minister Rugunda for being a uniting factor, with an amiable personality.

“Dr Rugunda remains my friend, even when we belong to different political parties,” Sabiiti said.

The Prime Minister, Rugunda also praised former Rukiga county MP Manzi Tumubweeine for continuing to support development projects in the county even after losing the seat to Jack Sabiiti, and for demonstrating the spirit of reconciliation with his opponent.

“I am glad to see the two of you, Ndugu Sabiiti and Ndugu Manzi working together for the good of your people,” Dr Rugunda said.

Over Shs 40m was raised during the fundraising.

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