Parliament has finally approved the creation of 23 new districts in various parts of the country; one of them being Kitagwenda in western Uganda.
Kitagwenda has been County and a third-order administrative division in Kamwenge District, Western Region, Uganda.
Kitagwenda, an earlier kingdom in what is today Kamwenge District was incorporated into the British Ankole protectorate in 1901.
In 2011, the Kamwenge District Council endorsed a proposal to carve Kitagwenda District out of Kamwenge.
The councillors unanimously seconded Gaston Kaliisa, the outgoing councillor for Buhanda Sub-county, who asked that Kitagwenda County be granted a district status.
He said with a population of 129,600 and natural resources such as Lake George, Queen Elizabeth National Park and the Dura Quarry Mines, Kitagwenda deserves a district status.
While on his campaign trail in the district on January 12 at Bunena Primary School playgrounds, President Museveni promised the people of Kitagwenda a district status.
Kamwenge District was carved out of Kabarole District about 10 years ago.
Parliament this week granted Kitagwenda a district status meaning Kamwenge now remains with two counties; Kibaale and Kamwenge Town Council.
The current Kamwenge LC V chairperson, Robert Kamasaka, hails from Kikondo, in the new Kitagwenda district.
Other 22 districts
Parliament had in recent sittings failed to pass the motion due to lack of quorum.
In the sitting on Thursday, 3 September 2015, 196 Members of Parliament supported the motion; six voted against; with three abstaining from the vote.
The Minister of Local Government, Hon. Adolf Mwesige, said in the motion that it was considered necessary to create the districts “for effective administration of those areas and bring services closer to the people.”
He said that the creation had taken into account the means of communication, geographical features, destiny of the population, the economic viability and the wishes of the people concerned.
The districts created include: Kagadi, Kakumiro, Omoro and Rubanda – to become effective on July 1, 2016; Namisindwa, Pakwach, Butebo, Rukiga, Kyotera and Bunyangabu – to become effective on July 1, 2017.
Others are Nabilatuk, Bugweri, Kasanda, Kwania, Kapelebyong and Kikuube – to become effective on July 1, 2018; and Obongi, Kazo, Rwampara, Kitagwenda, Madi-Okollo, Karenga and Lusot – to become effective on July 1, 2019.
Legislators however continued to complain of their areas not being given district status despite forwarding the required documents to the Ministry of Local Government.
The Opposition Chief Whip, Hon. Cecilia Ogwal, appealed to government to create Terego district, which she said had remained an island in West Nile.
She said Lango region had been marginalised considering that the population of Oyam district deserves three to four constituencies, each of which qualifies to be turned into a district.
Hon. Joseph Matte, Hon. Boaz Kafuda and Hon. Nandala Mafabi all said there was need to create more districts in Burendera, Kasese and Buwalasi (Mbale).
Minister Mwesige said there was “need for more patience and engagement” about the issues of creation of Terego district and another out of Tororo district.
He said that in order to avoid the escalation of conflict in Kasese, where serious disagreements are reported, the creation of a new district would lead to more divisions in the area.