Parliament of Uganda on Wednesday 27th passed a resolution to recall Uganda’s ambassador to Burundi, Rtd Maj Gen Matayo Kyaligonza, who is accused of assaulting a traffic police officer Sgt Esther Namaganda.
Kyaligonza, a member of UPDF High Command, was captured on video, looking on as his bodyguards Peter Bushindiki and John Robert Okurut assaulted the traffic officer in Seeta, Mukono district last week on Sunday 24th. Namaganda had reportedly stopped the general’s vehicle from making a u-tun in the middle of the road.
The resolution to recall him from diplomatic service was based on a motion tabled by the chairperson of Uganda Parliamentary Women’s Association (UWOPA), Pamela Kamugo Nasiyo, observing that the actions of Kyaligonza together with his bodyguards were demeaning and disrespectful of women in Uganda.
She demanded that the action is condemned as a message that women deserve respect and that the rule of law must be upheld. The motion received bi-partisan support led by Kasambya County MP Mbwatekamwa Gaffa, Butambala County MP Muwanga Kivumbi and Mbale Municipality MP Jack Wamanga Wamai, who all demanded that the ambassador is recalled immediately back to Uganda.
“The appointing authority should withdraw Kyaligonza, I know the people of Burundi will not accept him. Kyaligonza doesn’t reflect the character of Uganda, he must resign. He should also be held accountable by compensating the officer he assaulted.” said Mitooma Woman MP Jovah Kamateeka.
“If there are issues under which public officers should resign, this is one of them. Kyaligonza carries a title of His excellency and that makes the case grave for a man of his caliber. This parliament ought to call on Maj Kyaligonza to resign,” Kivumbi said.
Dokolo North MP Paul Amoru said Kyaligonza had once locked members of Parliamentary Accounts Committee (PAC) in Burundi, who had gone to carryout oversight work and therefore must be stripped of his ranks.
However, Bugahya County MP, Pius Wakabi wondered why MPs were only interested in discussing the misconduct of Kyaligonza and not that of Maj Gen Kasirye Gwanga who recently shot at the vehicle of the aides of local musician, Catherine Kusasira.
Earlier, Internal Affairs minister Gen Jeje Odongo presented a statement about the incident which he said was regrettable. He said that the police had summoned Kyaligonza to record a statement which will facilitate the law to take its course.
But legislators observed that his statement was lacking in detail on whether or not Kyaligonza will be prosecuted alongside his bodyguards. The bodyguards have since been arrested.