By Joshua Walakira
The conflict between St. Mary’s Kitende school proprietor and his neighbors escalated last night with the Bamugemereire-led land inquiry officials speaking out in total condemnation of the school tycoon. In our previous story posted Thursday evening, Wakiso leaders led by LC5 Chairman Matia Lwanga Bwanika questioned why the Commission wasn’t in a hurry to intervene even after being petitioned by local residents calling on it to reverse Mulindwa’s act of closing their only public road. But Dr. Douglas Singiza (who as Secretary schedules areas of work for the Commission) says it’s not true that they haven’t acted swiftly. In an interview at the inquiry Wandegeya, Singiza told this news website that they have intervened and taken a number of steps to restrain the indifference with which Dr. Mulindwa has been acting. He said sometime back they summoned and interrogated Mulindwa inside their board room where he faced all the commissioners. However, it was a closed session/meeting where no media reporters were allowed. Dr. Singiza wasn’t comfortable explaining why, unlike all the other past witnesses and officials before the inquiry, Mulindwa had to be interrogated in camera. He said during that meeting, Commissioners sought to deepen their understand of the dispute. He says in that session Mulindwa had to answer tough questions and having found his submissions (justifying road closure) not convincing, the Commission dispatched an investigations team to go and establish more facts. But in the interim, Singiza says, they wrote a letter directing Mulindwa to stop all his disruptive activities until the Commission takes a final decision on the matter. He says the investigators they sent out lost time and were unable to promptly do a good job because of the four months that passed without the Commission doing any work because of the operational constraints it has been facing. “We have written a number of letters directing him to stop that construction and we have been hearing that he has been defiant continuing as if no directives were issued to him,” Dr. Singiza said seemingly overwhelmed by the magnitude of the problem. He didn’t disclose whether they have been in touch with the complainants at all. In the yesterday interview with this news website, Bwanika said that close association with heavily armed soldiers had given Mulindwa alot of power and strength to the extent that the directives of Bamugemereire’s Commission don’t move him at all anymore. On his part, Mulindwa manaintains that this is his land and that the more than 50,000 residents from the 6 affected villages should accept to use an alternative route he has created for them through a place called Kijapan which links them to Kajjansi town directly. Many of them have for decades used the now closed road going to work, church or even taking their children to nearby cheaper schools. Mulindwa says he has closed the road and created a diversion because his students and staff have been suffering lots of hit and run accidents portraying him as a negligent proprietor of the school that is home to 1000s of students. Residents like Solomon Bugembe say the Kijapan diversion only shows how indifferent Mulindwa is to the children of his poor neighbors. Instead they say he should invest in fly over facilities similar to what Mzee Wako Wambuzi has at his Green Hill Academy or increase on the humps to check on the recklessly speeding motorists that are responsible for the hit and run accidents. For comments, call, text or whatsapp us on 0703164755.