By Ritah Nakamya
President Yoweri Museveni has on Saturday officially commissioned Kabwele Memorial Secondary School in Kanyum sub-county Kumi district that was built in memory of 37 civilians of the area who lost their lives on September 19, 1987 during the insurgency.
The President regretted the incident attributing it to very few indiscipline soldiers
“I am very sorry on behalf of NRM/NRA for the incident that happened here in 1987 and also happened in other few places. NRA was trained as a very disciplined army from the very beginning but you still had some indisciplined elements in some cases,” he said.
President Museveni pointed out that the army will not accept any incidences which are against the people and deeply regretted the unfortunate demise of innocent civilians and apologized for it.
President Museverni made the remarks while addressing the gathering that included the families of the victims at Kabwele Secondary School grounds in Akisim village Kanyumu sub county in Kumi district after commissioning the state of the art school that is sitting on a 4 acre piece of land.
He explained to them that unlike the Mukura incident that was well known, he was not aware of this particular one until the political wing informed him through the ~Minister of State for Teso Affairs. Hon Agnes Akiror whom he thanked very much for disclosing the evil.
“The NRM/NRA system is a comprehensive system because when there is a mistake here some people might try to cover it but the bigger system will find out,” he said.
He pledged to turn the place of adversity into opportunity which will be of excellence.
“This place of tears we want to turn it into a place of excellence,” he said.
Mr. Museveni also disclosed that the support to the school was the beginning of greater support to the victims and the government is going to build a Technical school in Ogoma in memory of those who died.
Commenting on the concerns raised by the people of the area through the Minister of State for Teso Affairs Hon. Agnes Akiror, the President pledged to assist the families of the victims and provide their children with scholarships. He also promised to organize the ceremony of ‘Okukaraba’.
On the issue of compensation for the cattle, he welcomed the idea of giving people money instead of animals. He said this could provide the beneficiaries with the opportunity to venture in other enterprises like constructing shops.
He also promised to rehabilitate Kabwele primary school whose roof was destroyed by a helicopter during the insurgency.
Commenting on ‘Emiyoga funds’ President Museveni explained that this was one of the advanced forms of support to the lower people who were already in some form of business.
He described the system as the first of its kind in the history of the governments in Uganda to give people funds direct for the improvement of their welfare.
“In Uganda I have never seen any government giving money directly to people for wealth creation governments were then working on public utilities like roads. I started this with the late Kisamba Mugerwa in Luwero,” he said.
He added that after so many interventions by the government the emiyoga proved to be the most effective mode as members themselves directly control it.
He explained that if well implemented, there will be 18 SACCOs which will act as peoples own banks in every constituency and the government will each year send more funds to such groups.
On corruption by electoral officials in the district, the President promised to investigate through the Anti corruption arm of State House and any body found culpable will be held accountable.
“We shall not tolerate corruption in this election,” he vowed.
The ceremony was attended by the State Minister for Teso Affairs, Akiror Egunyu Jaffer, Capt. Mike Mukula, MP. Ismail Okot, NRM flag bearers. Christine Aporu and Opolot Simon Peter.