Bishop who nurtured Museveni dies


The Bishop Emeritus for Mbarara arch diocese has passed on.

The Rt Rev John Baptist Makumbi passed on at 12:30pm on Thursday at Kampala Hospital.

He was ordained priest on 11 june 1960, appointed Bishop of Mbarara Diocese on 26 june 1969  and he resigned as bishop on 23 Nov 1991.

In his biography, he claims to have nurtured President Yoweri Museveni in to a political figure.

He writes thus:

Because of my teaching at Ntare which was a Government founded school, somehow secular my Bishop allowed me to wear a clergyman suit, a practice that was known in Uganda for diocesan priests.  The Bishop insisted that I wear the clergyman suit at Ntare and when going or coming back only.  He said he gave that permission by way of exception.  Bishop Ogez although French missionary was rather liberal. He did not allow me or other priests in the Diocese to put off their cassocks or gandulas for the White Fathers at any other time.  He had to conform to the rest of Ugandan clergy. I did not teach every day at Ntare.  On other days I shared parish work with my fellow priests in the parish. Later in the year when Fr. Neilson left the country I took over the whole chaplain’s work.  I had to teach all the catholic students from Senior I to senior IV.  There was no syllabus for S.I and S.II; I made my own syllabus in agreement with Mr. Crighton, the then headmaster.

As I had done Catholic Social studies at St. Peter Claver Institute in England, I put into use my knowledge of Catholic social teaching and social economic.  I made my syllabus for SI and SII based on the teaching of the   Social Catholic Church.

In my syllabus there were topics on political and human relationships between sexes and various nationalities.  These attracted very many students, even non-Catholics joined.  We held debates now and again.  It was here that young Yoweri Museveni joined in as one of them.  The debate was on adolescent boys’ and girls’ friendship.  This debate lasted weeks.  It was here that I began to see the witty astuteness of Yoweri Museveni.”

Bishop Kakubi will also be remembered for founding St. Joseph’s Vocational School located at the diocese headquarters in Nyamitanga Mbarara.

His body will be laid to rest in Mbarara on Friday.

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