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Elected Katikkiro real democracy

By Vision Reporter

Added 20th November 2005 03:00 AM

Sir — One big issue the opponents of an elected Katikkiro for Buganda avoid mentioning in their arguments is the fact that in democracies, the authority that is in charge of receiving and spending taxpayers’ money must be elected.

Sir — One big issue the opponents of an elected Katikkiro for Buganda avoid mentioning in their arguments is the fact that in democracies, the authority that is in charge of receiving and spending taxpayers’ money must be elected. In a democracy, the people are in charge of their taxes and exercise this power through election of individuals and political organisations of their choice, to lead the governments that will formulate and maintain policies, activities and infrastructure on which taxpayers’ money is spent.
In the proposed regional tier system of local government, the role that has been played by the Katikkiro is going to change from being a wholly cultural one to being one that is more political. He/she will no longer control just funds that are largely from charitable sources and cultural properties and enterprises, but also from national tax coffers. The holder of the office must therefore have the mandate of a majority if not all taxpayers. The proponents of a traditionally appointed and/or vetted Katikkiro are also silent on the issue of the possibility of a woman holding the position. Under the new proposed system, a woman who feels she has the right qualities for the office can offer herself for election and can be elected.
However, traditionally, a man must hold the position. That Baganda women have been silent on this is not helpful to the entire cause of introducing gender parity in our cultural traditions. For the sake of harmony and maintenance of democratic principles, our cultural leaders in maintaining tradition, must borrow the idea behind the saying: ‘Accentuate the positive, eliminate the negative’.
There are so many things about our indigenous cultures and traditions that are good and must be maintained. However, there are also some others that are not progressive but are oppressive. These must be discouraged and eliminated. Our cultural leaders must therefore exercise open-mindedness and tolerance, lest they put the very cultures they claim to protect at risk of extinction. Martin Makara, Ntinda, Kampala

Elected Katikkiro real democracy

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