The Lango culture on Friday swore in Eng. Dr. Michael Moses Odongo Okune, the executive director of Uganda National Roads Fund as the new Paramount Chief of Lango.
Odongo, 54 took oath of office as Paramount Chief for Lango during a ceremony that took place at his home in senior quarters, Lira municipal council in Lira district.
The swearing in ceremony was presided over by Louis Tumwesigye of Louis Tumwesigye Advocate & Commissioner for Oaths.
Odongo, the clan head of Okaromwono clan will replace Yosam Odur Ebii, 83 as the Paramount Chief of Lango.
He was elected in office by Lango clan heads on February 20th 2017 after a cultural turmoil that lasted about nine years.
Before electing him as Won-nyaci, Odong was the coordinator of Langis in Diaspora (Awitim) and a close ally to Mzee Yosam Odur Ebii.
According to Willy Omodo Omodo, the spokesperson for Lango Cultural Institution (Tekwaro Lango), Odongo will take the office from Mzee Yosam Odur Ebii on June 19th during the handover ceremony that will be held at Lango Cultural Center in Lira.
Odur who is set to hand over the leadership next month was elected as the interim Lango Chief in Apach district during the clan leaders meeting organized by a British funded Non-Governmental Organization Action Aid. He later invited some clan leaders at his home in Teboke, Apac district who approved him as the Paramount Chief of Lango.
In the course of his leadership, there were regular disputes among the Lango clan heads as some of them wanted him out of office on claims that he is incompetent while others claimed the procedure of electing him was not right.
In 2015, all the Lango clan heads had a peace agreement meeting which resolved that Odur serves for only two years and election of New Paramount Chief is done to replace him since he is aged.
Catherine Okello was optimistic saying, the swearing in of Eng. Dr. Michael Odongo will bring to an end disputes among cultural heads.
Over 40 clan heads (Owitong) witnessed the swearing in ceremony including the Lango clan heads council speaker, Rev. George Okeng. Other clan heads did not attend but were represented by people they delegated.
While addressing the clan heads after taking oath, Odongo promised to adhere to the constitution of Lango Cultural Institution (Tekwaro Lango).
‘’I take this opportunity to thank God for this day he has given us, thank all the Lango clan heads for electing me as the Paramount Chief of Lango and finally the government of Uganda for allowing us to finish this process successfully,” Okune noted.
“We are now heading into a peaceful transition of Lango cultural leadership therefore I appeal to all of you to remain calm. We are ready for any legal battle that may arise from anybody who does not want the peaceful transition,” he added.
However, in a telephone interview Friday evening, the Prime minister of Lango Cultural Foundation, Dr. Richard described the swearing in ceremony of Odongo as a drama.
He says Won-nyaci Yosam Odur is not ready to hand over power to anybody because the 2003 constitution stipulates that he will lead Lango as the Won-nyaci until death.