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EU Refers to Uganda Anti-Gay Bill ‘Regrettable’

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The European Union (EU) has strongly condemned Uganda Parliament for passing the Anti-Homosexuality Bill, 2009 saying it is a regrettable legislation because it undermines the rights of the sexual minorities.

The Vice President of EU, who is also the Foreign and Security Policy representative, Ms Catherine Ashton said: “I regret the adoption of the Anti-Homosexuality Bill.”

This was in the statement released on Friday by the European Union. The Parliament of Uganda passed the anti-gay bill on Friday afternoon which proposes life imprisonment for homosexual acts.

However, Ms Aston said: “The implementation of this law would contravene essential principles of non-discrimination enshrined in the international covenant on Civil and Political rights and in the African Charter on Human and People’ rights, both ratified by Uganda”.

This Act prohibits any form of sexual relations between persons of the same sex; prohibit the promotion.

It is a legislative proposal that would broaden the criminalisation of same-sex relations in Uganda domestically, and further includes provisions for Ugandans who engage in same-sex relations outside of Uganda, asserting that they may be extradicted for punishment back to Uganda, and includes penalties for individuals, companies, media organisations, or non-governmental organisations that know of gay people or support LGBT rights.

Now the bill awaits President Yoweri Museveni to assent it so that it becomes a law.

Derrick Orone Wins Gogonyo County ByElection

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The NRM’s Derrick Orone has won the Gogonyo County by-election. Gogonyo is a a county in Pallisa District in Eastern Uganda.

The NRM flag bearer won the seatwith 19,199 votes against NUP’s Joseph Okoboi Opolot who has garnered 519 votes.

It should be noted that NUP candidate had already withdrawn his candidature citing a meeting with the Iteso Leaders who advised him to give way for Orone.

Lots of controversies have marred the Gogonyo by election. Earlier, the Forum for Democratic Candidate Flag bearer withdrew his candidature in support of the NUP candidate.

A few days to the election day, the NUP flag bearer also withdrew his candidature leaving the NRM candidate with a landslide victory.

Though the NUP cites withdraw of his candidature due to ‘good reasons for their community’ NUP spokesmen Ssenyonyi cites ‘bribery of their candidate from the National Resistance Movement.

King Oyo Hikes Rwenzori Mountains

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His Majesty The Omukama of Tooro, Oyo Nyimba Kabamba Iguru Rukidi IV returns from successfully summiting the highest peak in the Rwenzori Mountains, becoming the first monarch to do so.

The King’s expedition is intended to raise awareness about the impact of climate change and highlight the need for the much-needed quick #ClimateAction.

His expedition also aims to promote the Rwenzoris as the best destination for mountain climbing in the world.

Upon his return from the Rwenzoris today, His Royal Highness, Omukama Oyo Nyimba Kabamba Iguru Rukidi IV was received by UWA Finance Director, Jimmy Mugisa on behalf of the Executive Director.

Also, there to welcome him back was Queen Best Kemigisa Akiiki, the Queen Mother alongside other officials from Tooro Kingdom, United Nations Development Programme – UNDP, and Uganda Tourism Board-UTB.

We would like to congratulate His Majesty The Omukama of Tooro for choosing to explore Uganda’s highest peak, Margherita in the UNESCO-listed Rwenzoris (5,109 metres)

Long live the King!

US Gives UGX77bn to Fight Food Crisis

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The US government has said that it has set aside about Shs 77 billion to help in the fight against food insecurity in Uganda.
This was announced by the U.S Ambassador to the UN, Linda Thomas-Greenfield during her visit to Uganda on Thursday.
“The United States is providing $20 million, subject to congressional approval, in new additional resources for Uganda through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID),” she said.
This assistance according to the US will be channeled through international and national partners and civil society organisations to enhance local efforts in Uganda.
Uganda is one of the US existing “Feed the Future”partner country, to directly mitigate the impacts of growing food insecurity, which have been exacerbated by Russia’s aggression in Ukraine.
In a statement by the US embassy in Uganda, it was pointed out that a confluence of crises have pushed many Ugandans, particularly those in the Karamoja sub region and the northern parts of the country into hunger.
This is attributed to the food and fertiliser prices which are already high because of the Covid-19 pandemic and have soared due to Russia’s war against Ukraine, putting families at risk.
“The new funding will help smallholder farmers adopt improved agricultural practices that increase productivity, reduce post harvest losses, and add value to their products. It will also boost agricultural production by expanding financing for fertiliser and improving its efficient use,” Greenfield said.
She emphasised that this assistance will build on existing agriculture and value chain investments to support farmers, agro-businesses, and consumers mitigate the impact of the global food crisis.
Greenfield also met President Museveni at State House Entebbe where she delivered a message from President Joe Biden.

The Best 5 National Parks in Uganda

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Kidepo Valley National Park

The raw and untouched Pearl of Africa, Uganda, is home to one of the most breathtaking sceneries in Africa and undoubtedly remarkable wildlife diversity on Earth. Travelers can always anticipate unmatched Uganda safari experiences while watching the gentle mountain gorillas in the dense jungles of south-western Uganda, lions, the towering giraffes, graceful elephants, frisky chimpanzees and chirping birds in their unique natural habitats.

Unbeaten gorilla encounters, unmatched game viewing, endless nature walking trails, chimpanzee trekking tours, mountaineering and indescribable bird watching experiences are some of the activities that the exciting National Parks in Uganda offer during safaris. However, even with only 10 National Parks, it is very challenging to pick the must-visit Parks because each one of them offers something unique and irresistible.

However, we have handpicked the top 4 exciting must-visit parks on a Uganda safari to help you plan your next tip in the beautiful East African Country.

Murchison falls National Park

Starting off with the oldest and largest protected area in Uganda, the phenomenal Murchison falls National Park is the Crown jewel of the country, as far as tourism is concerned. Established in 1952, this protected Area is one of the must-visit safari destinations in the country and ideal for encountering majority of Africa’s renowned game species like Rothschild giraffes, Defassa waterbucks, Hartebeests, Topis, Uganda Kobs, Oribis, lions, African bush elephants, Cape buffaloes, leopards, to mention but a few.

Murchison Falls National Park is situated within the north-western Uganda in the districts of Masindi, Kiryandongo, Buliisa and Nwoya, and is a huge 3893 square kilometers in area. This stunning park has been around for over 8 decades and normally draws adventure seeker from across the World. About 80 mammal species, 500 bird species, jaw-dropping landscapes including the mighty Murchison falls and the Victoria Nile are all things you ought to see in this stunning National Park.

Bwindi Impenetrable National Park

There is no doubt that Bwindi Impenetrable National Park in the south-western corner of the country is one of the top 4 exciting must-visit National Parks on Uganda safaris. This beautiful UNESCO World Heritage Site is home to the World-famous endangered mountain gorillas.

These primates are endangered and found in only three countries, and Bwindi being one of the National parks sheltering them surprisingly has the highest population with over 450 individuals out of the 1060 individuals.

This 321-square kilometer Park has about 120 mammals, 350 birds that include the Albertine Rift endemics, over 200 butterfly species and so much more. During your visit to this Park, you can get the chance to track the mountain gorilla, undertake mountain biking, cultural tour of the Batwa pygmies, and many other adventures.

Queen Elizabeth National Park

Another place on the top 4 exiting must-visit Parks on Uganda safaris has to be Queen Elizabeth National Park in western Uganda, with its diverse ecosystems/landscapes that comprise forests, wetlands, Lakes (freshwater and Crater), the Kazinga Channel, vast savannah grasslands and woodlands. This Park is known for many undisputable things but the one that stands out is the fact that it is home to the tree-climbing lions found in its southern Ishasha sector.

If you wish to do lion tracking, unmatched guided bush walks, hippo census, thrilling boat rides, hot air balloon tours, extraordinary community tours, rewarding game drives where you will witness four of the big five game (lions, leopards, Elephants and Buffaloes), then you should visit Queen Elizabeth National Park.

Kidepo Valley National Park

Easily the most picturesque safari destination in the country, Kidepo Valley National Park is an exciting must-visit Park during Uganda safaris. Sprawling in the isolated north-Eastern part of Uganda, the spectacular Kidepo is remote and as such, despite hosting some of the rarest wildlife species like cheetahs, striped hyenas, Ostriches and others, it doesn’t crawl with travelers as it should be.

Thanks to its incredible sweeping savannah plains, it has been recognized for offering the real “African wilderness experience” and visitors to the Park never run out of things to enjoy. At some point you are admiring the big cats especially cheetahs, lions, leopards on rock kopjes, the birds in the Narus Valley, elephants, buffaloes, spotted and striped hyenas, zebras and Rothschild giraffes roaming across the sweeping plains, at another point you are enjoying the Karamojong cultural experience.

Lukwago Drags Ofwono Opondo to Court

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The Kampala Lord Mayor Erias Lukwago has dragged government spokesperson Ofwono Opondo to the High Court seeking damages over the assault.

Last week, Lukwago ran to the police following an altercation with Ofwono Opondo, live on TV.

Lukwago recorded a statement at Kira Road Police Station and accused Ofwono Opondo of threatening violence and assault.The two were involved in an altercation on Thursday, and the Lord Mayor claims that he was beaten by Ofwono Opondo when cameras went off.In his suit filed on Wednesday, Lukwago wants the court to order Ofwono to issue a public apology.

He also seeks damages to the tune of Shs 500m for the alleged inhuman and degrading treatment meted out against him by Ofwono Opondo.

“I will leave no stone unturned in the pursuit of justice. Impunity must stop,” he said.

Scores Reported Dead in Kapchorwa Landslides

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Kapchorwa Landslides

A number of people has been confirmed dead and others injured by landslides in Chemalum village, Kapsinda sub-county, Tingye County in Kapchorwa district.

The landslides were triggered by the Saturday (July 30) trans-night torrential rains in the area which rolled into Sunday morning hours.

Of those confirmed dead are two minors killed in their sleep by a rolling mass of the rubble that landed on top of their house.

Some of those who survived were rushed to Kapchorwa General Hospital where they are being monitored by doctors. By press time, rescuers were still looking for more victims who could have been buried by the debris.

Police have since joined the local rescue team in search of more victims.

“Our team is on ground to provide any form of expertise in search and rescue of people who might have been buried by the landslide,” Fredmark Chesang, Sipi Police Spokesperson said.

Evelyn Kubarika Chebet the LC 5 Chairperson Kapchorwa condoled with the grieved families before asking the line ministries and partners to intervene with any necessary help.

Kubarika is worried that the situation might only get worse in the coming days since the rainy season is only beginning.

“This is very unfortunate and worrying because landslides are becoming regular in Kapchorwa. Windstorm is also another disaster the district grapples with time and again,” Kubarika said.

According to the latest update from the Uganda Meteorological Authority (UMA) most parts of the country particularly the East will receive above normal rainfall.

Last year (2021) in September, landslides occurred in the same County (Tingye) killing two Rael Chekwech, a primary six pupil of Sipi Primary School while her twin sister Betra Chesuro was severely injured alongside other victims.

Meteo Uganda Predicts Heavy Rains in August

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Heavy Rains in Uganda

After a prolonged dry spell, the Uganda National Meteorological Authority has forecast near normal rainfall in several parts of Northern, Eastern, and Mid-western Uganda for the month of August.

The authority however warns that these areas will also experience rains with a slight tendency of above normal or enhanced rainfall, while the rest of the country is expected to receive occasional rainfall during the forecast period.According to the authority’s Acting Executive Director David Elweru, generally the month of August forms the last months of the rainfall season and is always characterized by the southward movement of the rainfall from the north.

This weather outlook for August comes a day after flash floods claimed the lives of 10 people in the Sebei and Bugisu sub regions.

Kabaka Muwenda Mutebi Speaks Out on Coffee

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Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi

The Kabaka of Buganda Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II has requested the government to consider the voices of coffee stakeholders when making coffee decisions. He said that the government is expected to listen to coffee farmers on all issues concerning the coffee sector.

Speaking during the celebrations of his 29th Coronation Anniversary, Kabaka argued the government to seek means of shielding coffee farmers from extreme price fluctuations and to access capital to finance their efforts.

The celebrations for the 29th Coronation Anniversary were held at the Mengo Palace on Sunday 31st July 2022.

He added on that Buganda Kingdom is putting more emphasis on coffee production because, for the past period, coffee was one of the most grown cash crop grown in the country.

“Coffee is one of the products which contributes the biggest percentage to the economy of the country and it has also employed Ugandans starting from the grassroots,” Kabaka Mutebi said.

Coffee is one of the leading foreign exchange earner for Uganda. It is also one of the leading income generating activities in Uganda. Coffee production can aid in reducing poverty in the country because it involves a multiplier effect in several business sub sectors.

The Kabaka argued the government to put in place measures that can help coffee stakeholders to benefit from the product.

He asked leaders from all levels to find ways of reviving cooperative societies to support coffee farmers in the country. These cooperatives were used as engine for farmer’s harmonization, nurturing access to agricultural finance, and cumulative productivity and market entrée and raising income, He added.

“We can only benefit from coffee production if we focus on maintaining standards. This can only be achieved if coffee seedlings, fertilizers and pesticides are sold at favorable prices,” he said.

The Kabaka added that there is a need to have extension farmers in every sub-county to guide the farmers on how they can increase their production and have stable prices of coffee.

Kabaka Mutebi thanked the premier (Katikiro) of Buganda, Charles Peter Mayiga, for spearheading encouraging coffee growing farmers amidst existing challenges.

In 2016, Katikkiro Charles Peter Mayiga under the Kingdom of Buganda initiated the coffee campaign named “Emwanyi Terimba”. Mayiga engaged the Uganda Coffee Development Authority (UCDA) and formed a partnership to boost coffee growing in Buganda region.

Under this campaign, the UCDA was to provide seedlings and partner with the kingdom’s Buganda Cultural and Development Foundation (BUCADEF) to provide technical knowledge on the new development while the kingdom was to ensure people embrace growing coffee again. However according to the Katikkiro the UCDA is no longer providing the seedlings to the people of Buganda as agreed in the partnership.

This has come in at the time when Uganda is experiencing controversial in which is called the VINCI coffee agreement that the government had earlier signed with the Italian businesswoman Enrica Pinette.

The agreement was viewed as controversial has it gave VINCI monopoly over buying and adding value on Uganda’s coffee.

However, recently the deputy speaker of Parliament Thomas Tayebwa revealed that president Museveni agreed to make changes in this agreement.

Sir Edward Muteesa II’s speech on Independence Day – 9th Oct 1962

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Sir Edward Muteesa II

Sir. Edward Fredrick Luwangula Muteesa II is the first president of Uganda. He was also the Kabaka of Buganda Kingdom, the largest ethnic group in Uganda. Here is his first speech as the president of Uganda.

Ever wondered how the founder of Modern day Uganda was/has been honored and
commemorated? Well, well, thanks to Buganda Archives, the writing is on the wall. We commemorate the Founder of modern day Uganda every year since 9th
October 1962. Enjoy the history

*Sir Edward Muteesa II Independence Day Speech at Kololo*
*Fellow Countrymen,*
*It shall go down in history, that, it was on the 9th October, 1884, when Ssekabaka Walugembe Muteesa I, the founder of Modern Day Uganda, breathed his last. Ssekabaka Muteesa I was buried in his palace at Nnabulagala, Kasubi on 25th October, 1884.*
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*Therefore, I feel both honoured and humbled, to be named after my great grandfather Ssekabaka Walugembe Muteesa, and also because I have lived till this day when the British have relinquished power into our hands, after being under their protection for a period of 68 years.*
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*During that period, we have experienced moments of sadness. However, there have also been moments of joy. Nevertheless, we thank the good Lord for His grace, love and, all the efforts made by the Missionaries to develop our nation and country, Uganda.*
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*Now, that we are independent, I appeal to you all to work with all your might in whatever you shall do, so as to bring glory to both our kingdoms and the State of Uganda. Let us not allow our differences in nations, religion and colour to be a divisive factor among our people.*
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*God Bless Uganda,*
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*Sir Col. Edward Muteesa II *
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*Kabaka*
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*9th October 1962***

Courtesy of Nviiri
February 2009

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