By Insight Post Uganda
Councillors in Mukono Municipality have launched a challenge against the election of the former Mukono Municipality Mayor, George Fred Kagimu, as the president of the Municipal Development Forum-MDF.
The issue has sparked debate and raised important questions about the role of urban forums, the eligibility of candidates, and the effective functioning of municipal development initiatives.
The MDF, at the municipal level, is designed to provide a platform for urban development stakeholders to convene and exchange views on strategies to address gaps in service delivery and resource mobilisation.
Kagimu’s election as the president of the forum took place at the beginning of the year, and he promptly began executing his mandate by convening over ten meetings to date.
However, the Secretary for the Works Committee, Vincent Lubwama, contends that Kagimu was erroneously elected and has already moved to table a motion to cancel his election, suggesting that Kagimu’s deputy, Jamadah Kajoba, should replace him.
Lubwama’s primary accusation is that Kagimu is actively involved in a political office, which contravenes the guidelines for holding a position within the MDF.
Kagimu serves as the deputy president of the Democratic Party-DP in the Buganda Region.
“We have a lot of issues concerning development to tackle, and the president-elect is promoting conflicting ideologies that might contribute to the underdevelopment of our community,” Lubwama argues.
In response, Kagimu asserts that he was rightfully elected by responsible stakeholders, including relevant municipal leaders who were well aware of his role as the deputy president for DP in the Buganda Region.
Kagimu emphasizes that he represents business people and believes that those challenging his election are threatening his political future, pointing out that the leaders who now object to his election attended the meeting and did not raise any objections at the time of his election.
Meanwhile, the current mayor, Erisa Mukasa Nkoyoyo, in collaboration with the town clerk’s office, has petitioned the line ministry for guidance on this matter.
Nkoyoyo argues that Kagimu’s current position as the MDF president could undermine the forum’s purpose.
He cites concerns over Kagimu’s active involvement in politics and points to projects that encountered issues during Kagimu’s tenure as mayor, some of which he alleges were mismanaged.
“We want a development forum with leaders who can help us collect enough revenue, clean the town, negotiate between urban dwellers and urban managers, manage land disputes, and more. We need independent minds to influence local development positively,” Nkoyoyo explains.
However, amid this dispute and confusion, several critical questions arise. The outcome of this challenge could significantly impact the direction of urban development in Mukono Municipality.
It remains to be seen whether George Fred Kagimu will continue to serve as the MDF president or if a new leader will take the helm.
In the broader context, it underscores the importance of transparent and accountable processes in municipal development forums to ensure that they effectively serve their intended purpose of driving local development and improving the lives of residents.