The Kabaka of Buganda Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II has on his 65th birthday recognized the Former Democratic Party (DP) President, Dr Paul Kawanga Ssemogerere.
Unlike the previous years when the Kabaka’s birthday was celebrated amidst pomp, the Kingdom cancelled this year’s activities due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The main birthday celebrations had been scheduled for today at Lubaga Cathedral.
Addressing Journalists on Monday at Bulange-Mengo, the Katikkiro of Buganda Charles Peter Mayiga said that despite the cancellation of the celebrations, the Kingdom will still celebrate the King’s birthday.
He says that there are many achievements during the Kabaka’s 27 years on the throne that is worth celebrating. He cited improvement of the health status of his subjects by continuously fundraising money through ‘The Kabaka Birthday Run’ to fight Fistula, Sickle cell and currently the spread of HIV/AIDs.
As it has been the norm, Mayiga revealed that Kabaka had recognized Ssemogerere for his service as a leader and politician who at all times remained a gentleman.
“He practiced his beliefs as a politician, he served in government without getting himself in any scandalous situations,” said Mayiga.
Kabaka also hailed Ssemogerere’s contribution to his service as Chairperson of the 1993 preparations of his coronation.
He also recognized Sheikh Hussein Rajab Kakooza, the former Director of Sharia at the Uganda Muslim Supreme Council (UMSC). Kakooza is the first Imam of the National Mosque.
Others recognized was Rev. Samuel Kasujja, who baptized Kabaka Mutebi when he was 24 years on 8th May 1979.
Mayiga says that Rev. Kasujja has always taken care of Kabaka’s spiritual life and that of the royal family members. The Kabaka also recognized the work of veteran journalist John Yakuze.
Prof. Josephine Nambooze Kiggundu who was the first female medical doctor in Uganda and East Africa was also recognized. Mayiga said that the Kabaka appreciates her for carrying out her responsibility with passion and training other medical workers.
Nambooze also served voluntarily in the Buganda Lukiiko as the Minister of Health immediately after the coronation of Kabaka Mutebi in 1993.
Mayiga said that all these recognized people will be handed their gifts officially after the coronavirus crisis.
Mayiga appealed to Ugandans to continue observing all measures put in place by the government to combat the spread of coronavirus.
On Saturday, Kabaka Mutebi called upon the public to rally behind the Ministry of Health to defeat the spread of the coronavirus.
He explained that even after COVID-19 is defeated, people should continue with the sanitation measures of washing hands regularly both at home and workplaces arguing that almost 75 percent of the diseases that kill people in Africa are due to poor sanitation.
The Kabaka said as a kingdom, they commiserate with all those who have tested positive for the virus plus the families of those who have lost loved ones in countries like America and the United Kingdom.