Even as the Ugandan Muslims were celebrating the global Eid Il Fitr ending the fasting period of Ramathan, in Iganga town the Police were worried about any possible attacks on Muslim leaders during the event. They posted security around the mosques to stem any possible incident.
Elsewhere in the country, calling on government to sort out these killings, was very disturbing.
Earlier, in an apparent apology to the Muslim leaders, the Inspector General of Police, Maj. Gen. Kale Kayihura, had despaired about finding quick answers to the spate of the deaths. But last week however, the IGP lashed out at those he claimed were denigrating the efforts of the Police to come up with quick results. Moreover, this was at the time they were patting themselves on the back for the extradition of Jamil Mukulu from Tanzania; and by all indications they were now speedily ascribing the killings to the ADF – Mukulu’s Allied Democratic Front.
There are disquieting developments around these trends. For over 20 years, Mukulu has led the ADF; and its genesis has long been associated with Busoga, especially the Iganga Muslims. A number of the assassinated Muslim leaders have been from Mayuge and this general area. And there has been a tendency to blame the killings as vendettas within the Muslim sects.
Yet, extraditing Mukulu from Tanzania to Uganda as a “terrorist” would most certainly lay him at the door of Uganda’s “justice” to be a convenient fall guy to explain away the Muslim deaths. Tanzania should have taken this into account when they were considering extraditing Mukulu. This may explain the speed with which the issue of Mukulu has been tied with the recent deaths. But Mukulu is a long throw away for Uganda’s problems of tits lack of practicing actual democracy.
ADF is as much a rebel movement in Uganda as the Lords Resistance Army (LRA) of Gen. Joseph Kony is. Uganda has taken Kony to the International Criminal court (ICC), and as we are now, one of Kony’s lieutenants, Dominic Odyambo, is serving time in the Hague awaiting trial. Why did not the NRM government ask Tanzania to take Mukulu to the ICC, seeing that Mukulu and Kony are birds of the same feather?
The proponents of this argument claim that the issue of Muslim killings has come at the time the problems of the democratic processes in Uganda surrounding the selection of presidential candidates for whichever party is in hotting gear. There are various attempts therefore to smother the issues in the political processes and divert the attention of the public so that they don’t focus on the credibility of the candidates for Uganda’s presidency.
Recently, Tanzania has been at the forefront trying to sort out the issue of the Burundi elections. It should have put in as much as a sensitive attention to the up-coming Uganda elections, too. Not doing it and extraditing Mukulu to Uganda is playing a double game. This is not to extricate Mukulu from his nefarioua acts in Uganda. It will be interesting to see how Mukulu defends himself and the ADF on the killings of the students in Kicwhamba Technical Institute (KTI), a while back. There is also a claim that Mukulu is being roped in as a fall guy for these killings, too. Let him come it and lay the blame where it is due.
The impression I have of KTI is of an old friend who lost a son in this dastardly attack on the institute. Quite naturally he couldn’t/can’t get over the trauma of losing his son. There has always been blame attributed to the ADF. Others however claim that it may not be the case: this is where Mukulu should come in.
It will be incumbent upon the NRM government to solve the impending crises that the Muslim killings is likely to cause if the issue in dragged on indefinitely. Instead of blaming people for being impatient over this, the IGP would be at the forefront allaying the public’s fears.