The blocking of a meeting organised to discuss controversial issues surrounding the Indian investors’ plans to establish business developments at Hoima Public School has caused a rift between Kangabaije – a Hoima-based pressure group and the Hoima Resident City Commissioner (RCC), Mr Badru Mugabi.
Mr Nicholas Musinguzi commonly known as Mucakazi, the group Public Relations Officer (PRO), is displeased with Mr Mugabi’s pronouncement of blocking the meeting that was aimed at discussing the alleged establishment of a shopping mall at Hoima Public School that sits on the Indian land title as well as turning the government aided school into private ownership.
The RCC on Thursday declared that he could not let the meeting that was scheduled to take place today Friday, November 18, 2022, go on since the organisers had not fulfilled the procedures followed in organising meetings.
According to him, the organisers neither informed the city security committee that he heads nor the Indians who are a party in the controversial matter that was to be discussed at Hoima boma ground.
Mr Mugabi, also argued that allowing the meeting to convene would deprive the Indian investors of natural justice.
“The calling of this meeting is not bad. But we need to engage different stakeholders in order to have a good resolution that will benefit Hoima [in particular] and Uganda in general,” he said during a city budget conference at Kitara secondary school ahead of the blocked meeting.
Mr Gabriel Dema, one of the meeting organisers as well as Councillor for Central Ward, Hoima City, said it was agreed upon with the RCC that the meeting takes place on December 7, 2022, involving all concerned parties in order to get a lasting solution to the matter.
He revealed that the RCC promised to invite the Ministry of Education officials to attend the meeting for a balanced debate.
The councillor said in the meantime, stakeholders at different levels will be engaged for their views.
However, this has irked Kangabaije pressure group with the PRO, Mr Mucakazi poking holes in the act.
He said the meeting was not violent or clandestine since it was organised to take place in an open space and open to all.
“If someone says that he has authority over organising a meeting, then he will be undermining us because we also have local leaders and even pressure groups’ leaders.”
Mr Mucakazi wonders how government officials keep a deaf ear on emerging provocative issues about Hoima Public School yet they are of public interest only to spring into action after Kangabaije raising alarm.
Reports of establishing a shopping mall at Hoima Public School follow a recent foiled construction of a telecommunication tower at the same educational establishment that crusaders against the initiative said was dangerous to pupils’ life.
“There have been many provocative issues concerning Hoima Public School including the construction of a mast there. Not until we [Kangabaije] came out and petitioned the city [authorities], did the authorities act. I vow that matters concerning Hoima public school will not be left to go unchecked and we shall continue hustling with the government so that it compensates the Indian investors for the school to become either community or government owned.” Mr Mucakazi says.
Continuing: “I do agree that Hoima Public School belongs to the Indians but weren’t there any agreements made for the establishment of that school? Did it just come all out of the blue? Secondly, is the establishment of a shopping mall at the school more valuable than pupils’ education?”
This state of affairs has coerced Mr Mucakazi to suspect treachery.
“All this is hinging on a clique of self-seeking leaders who want to get financial favours at the expense of children’s education. Now, I openly tell all people that blocking this meeting was not out of good faith. The disrupters have felt ashamed of using the same approach they used to disperse a meeting at Bulemwa primary school that was to be attended by the leader of opposition. This time these people engaged other people including our very own who have been organising this meeting with us,” Mr Mucakazi alleged.
Kangabaije engagements with the Indian investors in Hoima
- The Rwentuma Road in which the Indian investor has a hardware shop that hindered complete construction of the road to connect to Commercial Street. The Hoima city authorities call it a Close. Kangabaije demands that government compensates the Indian investor using money from Road Fund to pave the way for full construction of the road to Commercial Street.
- Questioning the legality of the construction of a telecommunication tower at Hoima Public School that later saw political leaders and technocrats halt the erection over illegality.
- The contemporary saga of the Indian investors’ plan to construct a shopping mall at Hoima Public School. Hoima RCC, Mr Badru Mugabi, blocked the meeting that aimed to discuss the matter over lack of green light from the city security committee and non-invitation of the concerned Indian investors to attend it.