Breaking

Relatives of Slain Fronasa Fighter Cry Foul Over Museveni’s failure to Fulfil Pledge

Top story
William Kangire, 72, a young brother of David Kagoro Kangyire narrates that his sibling dropped out of senior three at Kigezi College Butobere to join Fronasa at 20 years of age. He says that Kagoro was arrested by Amin’s soldiers while hiding in one of the Hotels in Gulu district where he was acting as a spy for Fronasa.
The late, David Kagoro Kangire

Audio 6

Relatives of the late David Kagoro Kangire, one of the victims of public executions in 1973 in Kabale District are crying foul over the failure by President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni to recognize him. 

Kagoro, a resident of Kasoni village, Central ward, Mparo Town Council Rukiga district was among the first recruits into the Front for National Salvation (Fronasa), a rebel group formed by Museveni to fight the Idi Amin government, which took power in a military coup in January 1971.

 

Shortly after the coup, Museveni, who was working as a researcher in the office of President Milton Obote left for Tanzania and started mobilizing clandestine activities against the new government. He started recruiting people into Fronasa. Among the recruits were Kagoro, Joseph Karambuzi, and Joseph Bitwari.

 

In his book, Sowing the Mustard Seed, Museveni narrates Fronasa's leading role in the September 1972 attack on Simba Barracks in Mbarara, now the Second Division army headquarters at Makenke, in which the government forces nearly annihilated the rebels.     Following the attack, the government launched reprisal attacks hunting the suspected rebels and their collaborators. Security rounded up several young men from different parts of the country, including Karambuzi, Bitwari and Kangire.

  A military tribunal sentenced the suspects to death by firing squad in their respective home areas. In Kabale, the executions took place on February 10, 1973 at Kabale Municipal Stadium. Similar executions took place in Mbale where a former soldier, Captain Tom Masaba from Bugisu and one Nkoko from Busoga were killed.

 

William Kangire, 72, a young brother of David Kagoro Kangyire narrates that his sibling dropped out of senior three at Kigezi College Butobere to join Fronasa at 20 years of age. He says that Kagoro was arrested by Amin’s soldiers while hiding in one of the Hotels in Gulu district where he was acting as a spy for Fronasa.

 

Kangire says that much as the army handed over Karambuzi and Bitwari’s bodies to their relatives for descent burial after execution, the army never surrendered Kagoro’s body. To date, it is whereabouts is still unknown. Kangire says that during the 2001 presidential election campaigns in Rukiga, Museveni promised to construct a memorial commercial building and donate a heifer and vehicle to the deceased’s relatives as a way of recognizing his efforts towards the liberation of Uganda from bad leadership.

He later invited Kagoro’s relatives to State House where he repeated the same pledges. Kangire however, says that when his family members led by his father, Ephraim Kangyire contacted the then Principal Private Secretary (PPS) office of the president, Ameria Kyambadde, who bounced them and accused them of supporting the then Rukiga County, Member of Parliament, Jack Sabiti, who belonged to the opposition.  

//Cue in: “he pledged a lot…

 

Cue out:…his memorial.”//

 

Rukiga

 

//Cue in: “2001 yeija mparo…

 

Cue out: …ebi twatumushabire.”//

 

Kangire says that they have continued pursuing the pledges with the Office of the Prime Minister but nothing has come through. He says that their father died in 2008 a heartbroken man because of Museveni’s failure to fulfil his promise.  

 

//Cue in; “the body was…

 

Cue out: …memorial purposes.”//

 

Rukiga

 

//Cue in: “ekyo kishemereire kuzaho…

 

Cue out: …that just.”//

 

The deceased’s sister Grace Biramahiire, says that since the deceased was executed before getting married, Museveni should fulfil the promises because it is the only way for his family to remember him for the role, he prayed in liberating the nation.   Biramahiire wonders why Museveni rewarded the family of the late Karambuzi with a commercial complex in Mwanjari in Southern division in Kabale Municipality and left their family since the duo was executed on similar grounds.

 

The Prime Minister, Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda promised to follow up on the matter when contacted by our reporter. Rugunda explained that the fulfilment of pledges is done in phases, saying that Kagoro’s family have the chance of benefiting since Karambuzi’s family has already benefited.

 

//Cue in: “I am going…

 

Cue out: …the list.”//

 

Rukiga

 

//Cue in: “yee mbweenu naaza…

 

Cue out: …kangire hatiya.”//