Amama Mbabazi has promised to give Buganda the much sought after federal system of governance.
Back in October, Buganda politicians who support Mbabazi’s presidential bid sat at Nsambya Sharing Hall and demanded that the former Prime Minister assures them of federalism if they are to elect him as president.
The group included high-profile political figures in Buganda; Betty Nambooze Bakireke, Medard Sseggona, Mathias Mpuuga and Mathias Nsubuga Birekeraawo.
Nambooze, the Mukono municipality MP, said President Yoweri Museveni had managed to sustain a “lie” for 30 years and never gave them federal.
She asked Mbabazi to guarantee that in the event that he is victorious, he should deliver a federal system of government within the first year of his administration.
Nambooze also demanded to see a revision of land laws and the return of the controversial 9,000 square miles of land that the central government reportedly took away from Buganda kingdom.
In 2014, Mbabazi launched campaigns to agitate for the formation of a regional tier system of governance in Kigezi region.
Mbabazi said the system would create an opportunity for local leaders in the region to make proper development plans and have direct control over institutions currently poorly managed by the Central government.
Regional tier system of governance is provided for in the 2005 Constitution but no region or set of districts have implemented it.
Government made the proposal in 2004 in place for the federal system that was being advocated for by a section of the public, particularly the Buganda Kingdom.
Buganda leaders however rejected it, arguing it would dismantle the Kingdom.
Speaking at a rally in Mpigi town last evening, Mbabazi said he was ready to allow Buganda lead itself.
Amama’s speech in Mpigi town
There’s little time because I spent so much time moving around these villages and I was able to see how bad the roads are. My Government will work on this.
Firstly, as a person who fought for our liberation, and an elder, I want to tell you that everytime we have had a change in Government it has been accompanied by blood shed of the people and not the leaders. I want to bring about peaceful change therefore.
We can’t fight change, it has to come. So, I want to tell you that if you want change, it is in your power to create that change.
I know your living conditions are poor, so when you don’t like your condition, you change.
When I come back, we shall talk about our Manifesto in detail but sticking to local issues, I know there’s an issue of land grabbing. So after being sworn in, we shall put a monotarium on all land in dispute.
Gomba and Butambala came from Mpigi district but the condition of the Mpigi left was not right. We shall therefore put up an equalisation grant for areas like this.
I know that you have poor health care, so we shall staff these health centres with labour force and pay them well to ensure they are at work on top of ensuring there’s medicine.
I know the education levels are low here because teachers are underpaid so we shall pay them acceptable salaries and build them houses at the schools.
In agriculture, we shall put back the cooperatives and we shall be talking about it in detail and how it can help us fight poverty.
Unemployment of the youth: In our Manifesto we state in detail how we shall create up to 5 million jobs by 2021.
Elders: I have seen many old people still demanding pensions. So in the first 100 days we shall find money to pay them.
Federo: Our Government even in our Manifesto, will allow the people to choose how they want to be governed.
Corruption: When I am sworn into office, all those who had plans, should know early that we shall not accept it and you will see what we will do to them.
The army and police are good people, but there are a few bad elements, so they should not worry. We shall increase salaries and build them proper housing.
If you want change, vote Amama.
I didn’t tell you my name earlier but I am called Amama Mbabazi.
So all those who want peaceful transition should vote for me.
My symbol is the chair.
On voting day, you should all come and vote. Stay at the polling station until the exercise us done. Your part is done.
The other issue is the manipulation during tallying. You won’t manage that work, leave it to me.
We shall come back and visit every constituency but remember I came to ask you for your vote. Do I have it?