By Abdulkarim Ssengendo and Hellen Mukiibi
John Kabaireho, former (Enganzi) Prime Minister of Ankole Kingdom has died in Kampala after losing battle with cancer.
Aged 91,Kabaireho, a resident of Bwoma in Ryeishe sub-county, Bushenyi district was the first Catholic prime minister of Ankole Kingdom in 1960.
The same office had earlier been held by :Nuwa Mbaguta, Lazario Kamugungunu and Zekeria Mungonya. In 1963 he (Kabaireho) was replaced by James Kahigiriza, who was the last Engazi before the kingdoms were abolished.
During his tenure as Engazi, Kabaireho was part of the delegation who attended the Uganda Self Governance Conference at Lancaster House and the Independence Conference in Marlborough House in 1961 that negotiated Uganda’s independence.
The delegation comprised of officials from all the kingdoms in Uganda, districts and political parties. He headed the Ankole team in his capacity as the kingdom’s prime minister (Enganzi), an office he served in from 1960-1963.
After the fall of Obote II government, Kabaireho was a commissioner general of the western region during the regime of Prof. Yusuf Lule that lasted 68 months.
On becoming president, Lule divided Uganda into four regions. These were west, east, north and Buganda. Kabaireho was appointed to head western region and its headquarters were in Fort Portal.
He also served government in several institutions including ministry of Education before he was posted to East African Posts and Telecommunications in Kenya and later appointed manager Uganda Posts and Telecommunications.
A renowned politician, he was the DP chairman in Bushenyi. In an interview with the New Vision last year, he revealed that due to advanced age, he intended to hand over the party chairmanship to ensure continuity.
A widower, Kabaireho is survived by six children.