President Museveni has explained why he named former Education Minister and retired UPDF Major, Jessica Alupo Vice President and former State Minister for General Duties Robinah Nabbanja as Prime Minister in his new cabinet.
Speaking after the new members of cabinet took oath at the Kololo independence grounds on Monday afternoon, the president detailed how he choose some of his ministers to join the new cabinet.
“Alupo is a hard worker and listens to my advice. I started with her when I told her to solve issue of enterprise selection. I told Alupo to grow fruits and listened to my advice. She works for unity and anti-corruption,” Museveni.
The president revealed that he came to know Alupo because her father died in “our struggle” after being blown up by a land mine by rebels and identified her as a cadre.
Museveni however said she dislikes Alupo for being quarrelsome and mentioned some incidents in which he had to intervene as the new Vice President was quarrelling with colleagues.
“Alupo likes quarreling and at one time I said, if you like fighting I will send you to Somalia. One time she was quarreling with Kasule Lumumba,”Museveni said.
Speaking of the new Prime Minister and leader of government business, Museveni sang praises for Robinah Nabbanja whom he described as a hardworking lady.
“She is very committed, hardworking, very active mobiliser and anti-corruption. In that parliament, we have been having corruption and Nabbanja told me long ago after smelling a rat. She is very straight forward. When we were having a by-election in Bunyoro and some people’s eyes were not looking straight. She was very straight forward,” the president noted.
Museveni described Nabbanja as the biggest export from Bunyoro after Kabalega.
“Bunyoro has been mishandled for a long time by the British and some of the political actors. Some of us are people of this area. When I restored cultural institutions I thought they would understand the chain link of this area. I am happy that Nabbanja is now the biggest Munyoro since Kabalega.”
Museveni explained that in the new cabinet, he had to cater for children of the veteran and he named the new Minister of State for Kampala Kabuye Kyofatogabye,Fred Byamukama(Minister of State for Works),Aisha Ssekindi(Minister of State for Water and Environment) and Henry Okello Oryem(Minister of State for Foreign Affairs) as some of those who fall in that category.
“We have given opportunity to many people and misused it. This time I made a point to pick some of the children for veterans in the new cabinet. Many of you don’t know them but are here. To the children of the ministers, now is the time to push the programs for your parents,” Museveni said.
The president revealed that in the new cabinet he took care of the interests of the young ones like Diana Mutasingwa Nankunda, the Minister of State, Office of the Vice President as well as his old comrades like Magode Ikuya, the Minister of State for East African Affairs.
President Museveni recently described his new cabinet as one of fishermen but was quick to note that they are loyal.
He insisted that by naming the new cabinet, he was following in the footsteps of Jesus Christ who ignored intellectuals and appointed fishermen to his movement.
“In forming the Cabinet, I was adding, subtracting, dividing… You people are fantastic. When Jesus started his movement, there were intellectuals like the Pharisees. But, Jesus went for the fishermen. So, when you look at my [Cabinet] list, know that I am in the path of Jesus Christ,” he said.