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M7 TELLS OFF NABBANJA: ‘STOP FIGHTING VP ALUPO’

By Mulengera Reporters

For some time now, a silent war for supremacy and egos has been on between Vice President Jessica Alupo and Prime Minister Robinah Nabbanja Musafiri. And it has always rotated around who should chair Cabinet sessions more often than who.

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Here is the brief background to the feud. On becoming Prime Minister, Nabbanja took it for granted that she would be the one to chair Cabinet and be in charge of its business more often than Alupo. This was so because something similar had been happening during the days and years of her predecessor Ruhakana Rugunda who chaired more Cabinet meetings than Edward Kiwanuka Sekandi. The same had been happening even during the days of Rugunda‘s predecessor Amama Mbabazi who was more conspiceous during Cabinet sessions than the naturally very introverted VP Sekandi.

So on becoming PM, Nabbanja (who actually already has more nemeses in Cabinet than any of her predecessors) exhibited extreme appetite for the same domination only to be prevented and neutralized by Alupo’s equally combative and ambitious character. Unlike Sekandi who was elderly, sickly,frail,withdrawn and naturally a laid back person, Alupo vigorously stepped forward insisting to be allowed space to do what the Constitution mandates her to do. This left Nabbanja deflated and feeling deprived of the shine her more able predecessor Rugunda had enjoyed.

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“Why I’m I being sidelined from chairing Cabinet yet my predecessor has been chairing more Cabinet meetings than anyone else? This isn’t something I’m going to accept because a practice has been established for all the years my Senior Rugunda has been holding this same position,” Nabbanja would grumble at the start of her tenure.

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And when Alupo, being a fighter in her own right, didn’t give way, the Premier escalated the same to H.E the President overlooking colleagues who had advised her to appreciate that Rugunda was conspicuous during the past terms of government simply because of the character Sekandi kept exhibiting since the days of Amama Mbabazi-sickly, frail, withdrawn, disinterested and laid back. On being presented with the Nabbanja concerns, Gen Museveni (who had already learnt of the friction between the two flamboyant ladies through intelligence) summoned the two protagonists to a (de-escalation) meeting.

And during that meeting, the veteran leader from Rwakitura demanded to know what the apparent quarrel and uneaseness between the two equally energetic ladies was. Always being the first to speak (sometimes unreflectively and even on occasions silence would have been the best option), Nabbanja said she was feeling belittled and unfairly deprived. “I’m aware and I know everything that you have been grumbling about,” Gen Museveni said adding that: “The truth of the matter is the Vice President is right on this one. The Prime Minister can only chair Cabinet if the President and Vice President are absent or if they are unable to chair it themselves for some reason and they have delegated the Prime Minister to chair on their behalf.”

Imploring her to forget about what the practice had becoming the Rugunda/Sekandi years, Gen Museveni went ahead to school the Kakumiro Woman MP about what the law says or provides about the roles of the President and Vice President making it clear to her that, under normal circumstances, there is no way the Prime Minister cab preside over Cabinet sessions when the Vice President is present, willing and able to do the same. Such would breach the laws, protocol and rules of prudent practice, the veteran leader from Rwakitura guided as VP Alupo smiled with blessedness.

Mulengera News understands that Gen Museveni‘s ruling on this matter has since excited many seniors in Cabinet because it deescalated what they initially feared would explode into a public quarrel to the total detriment and humiliation of the entire Cabinet.

“We were also excited because majority of us are more comfortable with the way the Vice President chairs Cabinet than the Prime Minister. The Vice President is more courteous and respectful of colleagues than the Prime Minister who will be in a hurry to cover many things on the Cabinet paper and won’t allow matters to be discussed exhaustively. The VP is systematic and wants exhaustive debate because she wants the decision that is finally reached to be as inclusive as possible. The only problem is that Cabinet won’t end quickly when she is the one in the Chair because she wants many views to be expressed and will permit colleagues to exhaustively present their thoughts unlike the Prime Minister who will shut you up mid-way into your submission,” explained one of the Cabinet seniors we spoke to for this article. (For comments on this story, call, text or whatsapp us on 0705579994 [whatsapp line], 0779411734, 0200900416 or email us atmulengera2040@gmail.com).

 

 

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