Trouble for Rukutana

Trouble for Rukutana

Will `God’ forgive him again? Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | Mwesigwa Rukutana, the Minister of State Minister for Labour who was arrested and remanded to prison on Sept.05 in relation to violence in the just concluded NRM parliamentary primary elections, is no stranger to the top and down of life.

He has been involved in money scandals and political fights and been kicked out of parliament for misbehavior. But one thing is clear; he always stumbles back to the top.

This is not the first time Rukutana is in the spotlight for his gun-toting antics. In November 2018, there was uproar after a photo surface on social media of him apparently herding cattle on his farm while holding an AK47 rifle. When put to task over the issue, Rukutana reacted as if there was nothing wrong with him herding cattle with the AK47.

“What if it was me in the photo,” he told a journalist. “Let’s assume it was mine, what could be wrong with that.” He said he has lawfully owned a gun for over 20 years and the matter died down.

That is why the most interesting bit about his latest escapade will be watching how he bounces back again. It will point to how President Yoweri Museveni is this time handling the so-called “untouchables” within his government.

Rukutana, who is also the MP for Rushenyi County in Ntungamo District, is charged with causing bodily harm, attempted murder, malicious damage to property and threatening violence. He allegedly pulled a gun on a convoy of his political opponent. He allegedly committed the offences on Sept. 04 during the NRM primaries in his constituency.

The 60-year old Rukutana who has held the seat for over 20 years appears to have been caught flatfooted when it became obvious he was being licked by a younger latecomer to the race, the 52-year old Naome Kabasharira.

Kabasharira has been the Ntungamo district Woman MP longer than Rukutana has been MP and appeared comfortable in her seat. But various politicians opposed to Rukutana convinced her to take him on with their backing.

Their tussle appears to have caught fire because Rukutana and Kabasharira have a history. They are former business associates and she is his sister-in-law. The stakes were equally high career-wise. Rukutana’s loss in the primaries means he will not be a member of parliament for the first time in about 25 years.

That means that although he has in […]

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