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Buganda Khadis back Mubajje

By Vision Reporter

Added 4th February 2009 03:00 AM

SIX Muslim district khadis from Buganda and another from western Uganda yesterday pledged loyalty to the Mufti, Sheik Shaban Ramathan Mubajje.

SIX Muslim district khadis from Buganda and another from western Uganda yesterday pledged loyalty to the Mufti, Sheik Shaban Ramathan Mubajje.

By Chris Kiwawulo

SIX Muslim district khadis from Buganda and another from western Uganda yesterday pledged loyalty to the Mufti, Sheik Shaban Ramathan Mubajje.

The Muslims leader also denounced the breakaway group headed by Sheik Zubair Kayongo.

The sheiks vowed to support the Uganda Muslim Supreme Council (UMSC) leadership, arguing that the Kibuli-based rivals were treacherous and had contravened the council constitution.

The khadis pledged their allegiance during a meeting with Mubajje at his office at the UMSC headquarters in Old Kampala.

The khadis were sheiks Ahmad Kiyaga (Mukono), Afane Kawooya (Mubende), Huzairu Kiruta (Masaka) and Habib Mande (Toro).

Others were sheiks Swaibu Kaweesi (Rakai), Bulaim Nkangi (West Buganda covering Mpigi and Wakiso) and Abdul Kinene Mukiibi (Luweero).

Mukiibi, who also doubles as the deputy Mufti, likened the rival group to dry banana leaves that are dead and useless.

Mukiibi boasted that his leadership in Luweero would not allow the rival elements to divide Muslims in the district.

Kaweesi urged Mubajje to stay clam despite continuous provocation by the rival group.

“They have fitina (envy). They have on several occasions prayed for your death. They even went to Mecca to pray that you die. They took you to court but they have not succeeded in any of their endeavours. Please, do not get annoyed,” Kaweesi advised.

The tough-talking Mubajje, buoyed by the support from the khadis, warned the rival group against interfering with UMSC work.

Mubajje said he had also received messages from khadis from eastern and northern Uganda pledging their allegiance.

“Muslims in the country are not happy with the Kibuli group’s treacherous behaviour and they have their own ways of dealing with such people,” Mubajje warned.

Last month, the rival group installed Kayongo as Mufti and Sheikh Abdul-Hakim Ssekimpi as his deputy.

On Tuesday, the Kampala district khadi, Sheikh Suleiman Kasule Ndirangwa and eight Twale (division) leaders in Kampala, disowned Mubajje and defected to the Kibuli breakaway faction.

“He (Ndirangwa) was one of the 30 khadis who attended the General Assembly on January 25 and appended his signature on the resolution that said the group that took me to court had acted against the UMSC rules and regulations,” Mubajje disclosed.

Mubajje gave Ndirangwa five days to hand over all UMSC assets and facilities under his care.

During the same function, Musa Kamagu refuted reports that the Katwe Twale leader, Sheikh Ahmed Matovu, had also defected to the Kibuli faction.

Another Imam, Abdur-Salam Mbogo from Ggaba, also distanced himself from the Kibuli group.

UMSC general secretary Eng. Zaid Kavuma, spokesperson Hajji Nsereko Mutumba and former Kampala khadi Sheikh Abdul-Kadir Mbogo attended the meeting at Old Kampala yesterday.

Earlier, Mutumba said Mubajje would replace Ndirangwa, the Kampala district khadi.

Before becoming the district kadhi, Ndirangwa was the imam of Kibuli mosque.

Mutumba explained that the eight Twale leaders who defected to Kibuli were all appointees of Ndirangwa and that they would be replaced once a new district kadhi is appointed.

“The procedure is that a Muslim district council nominates three names (for appointment as district khadi) for the Mufti to pick from. But the Mufti has the right to reject all of them. He also has powers to name an acting district khadi before the district council nominates,” Mutumba explained.

He also warned the Kibuli group for threatening to storm the Old Kampala mosque, the UMSC seat. He advised the group not to mistake Mubajje’s diplomatic approach for a weakness. “We are ready to defend the Muslim constitution at any cost and we have the mandate of all Muslims of Uganda, not just one tribe. We shall not allow anybody to overturn the leadership of UMSC through a coup,” he warned.

If the “rebels’ want the leadership of UMSC, he added, they should seek the mandate of Muslims through elections as the constitution says.

“Anything outside of that will not be accepted and shall be resisted with all means possible,” Mutumba stressed.

Additional reporting by Cyprian Musoke

Buganda Khadis back Mubajje

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