NRM, FDC `fight’ for Museveni as Christians raise millions for Church project

Wednesday 19th September 2012
Department of Press and Public Relations. News. Information. Communication

President Yoweri Museveni has today boosted a fundraising drive by Catholics and well-wishers in Busoga region to raise over 239 million shillings in cash and pledges as part of activities to mark the ground breaking ceremony for St. Gonzaga Gonza Iganga minor seminary.

The colourful ceremony saw Jinja Mayor Baswari Muhammed Kezaala contribute Shs 1 million for President Yoweri Museveni’s portrait. His offer was however beaten by various NRM supporters including members of parliament led by government chief whip Justine Kasule Lumumba and the Jinja Municipal NRM chairman Moses Kalisa Karangwa who raised Shs 20 million. The game was however upped when an angry FDCs Vice President for Eastern Region Proscovia Salaamu Musumba, a staunch Catholic walked to the podium and said her party would take the portrait if well-wishers did not raise 27 million shillings for it to represent the 27 fighters who went to the bush to fight for Uganda’s freedom lead by the NRM party chairman Yoweri Museveni and also to represent 27 years that the NRM has been in power.

“I’m very angry. You should raise 27 million shillings to represent the 27 fighters who went to the bush and the 27 years the NRM has been in power. If you don’t, I will take away your chairman and you don’t want to know what I will do to him,” Musumba said, causing excitement with the NRMs Karangwa quickly rescuing the situation and wrestling away the portrait at over 30 million shillings. The portrait was auctioned by the Bishop of Jinja Diocese Charles Martin Wamika. Previously President Yoweri Museveni contributed Shs 30 million in cash and another 70 million shillings in pledges before auctioning Bishop Wamikas portrait at Shs 8 million.

Addressing the gathering, President Yoweri Museveni commended Bishop Wamika for emphasizing wealth creation and poverty eradication in homes, urging both political and religious leaders to always sensitize the people on the importance of wealth creation in homes as opposed to begging.

“Leaders are always talking about services like hospitals and schools, infrastructure like roads to facilitate development and peace and security. What they never talk about is wealth creation in the homes. Wealth starts from people’s homes and that is where we get money for infrastructure development,” he said.

The President urged leaders to promote a culture of production among the people through modern agro production saying this will promote development. He gave the example of youth from Busoga who had a working tour in Western Uganda and returned to implement some of the best practices in agro production, urging religious leaders to promote the fight against poverty and spread knowledge about wealth creation.

“With the empowerment of the community, the religious institutions will also be empowered for development,” he said.

On the disputed Church land in Namirali, the President said all efforts will be made in ensuring that the Church gets its land back since it always holds the title to the disputed land.

Bishop Wamika said because of poverty people value individuals more than money and have an attitude of `all being equal in not having because all must be equal in poverty’. He said the proposed seminary that will cost over Shs 1.3 billion will house over 1000 boys who are disciplined citizens, self motivated, enterprising and nationalistic men of character. He and that the church intended to build a building every two years to have 22 buildings in 44 years.

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