BWANGA: How Museveni befriended Besigye’s chaotic woman and her fallout with State House gurus
Princess Nalinya Namirembe Bwanga was recently remanded to Kigo prison by Luwero Chief Magistrate Samuel Munobe, for allegedly trying to dispossess unsuspecting people in Wakiso of their land, until they made an alarm to State House Anti-corruption unit led by Lt. Col. Edith Nakalem.
But as we’re about to show you, Bwanga has enjoyed an intricate relationship involving the highest office in the land despite a trail of questionable dealings mostly involving land.
In the 2006 elections, self-styled ‘Princess’ Nalinnya Faridah Namusisi Namirembe Bwanga covertly campaigned for the opposition candidate Dr. Warren Kizza Besigye.
Insiders reveal now how the woman of many names commendably did a great job for Besigye especially among the traditional healers who she delivered to the camp of Besigye.
Knowledgeable sources tell us that the sophisticated Bwanga would deploy some of Besigye’s campaigners among the traditional healers to pose as supporters for Museveni during the day.
The spies so deployed would collect intelligence regarding the strength of the rival’s camp and such other relevant info and pass it over to Bwanga who would inform her boss accordingly. Besigye would then use such info to weaken Museveni’s camp.
Essentially, the fact that this woman holds out as a member of the Royal Family in Buganda; and also as a guardian of what she describes as the Bwanga and Ddungu heritages, helped as well to attract some good support for Besigye from the subjects of Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi 11.
Suffice to say, Bwanga proved to be a good mobiliser as well as a strategist for the son of Kifeefe during that election.
Following the elections which he struggled to win, and after making a thorough assessment of the overall campaigns, Museveni and the ruling party candidate decided to do everything under the sun to snatch Bwanga.
Covert operations to snatch Bwanga and other key strategists of Besigye kicked off shortly after the results of the assessment had been delivered to and pursued by the son of Kaguta.
After making a lot of noise about what he termed as the theft of his victory, Besigye retired to his ranch at Kasangati to wait for 2011 to try his luck once more.
On the other hand, Museveni who had apparently learned crucial lessons from the big fight with Besigye had surprisingly pulled off and from the number of votes the opposition candidate had garnered, started thinking hard and fast.
Unknown to Besigye, the political hare in Kaguta went down to work beginning with dismantling the rival’s campaign team well ahead of the next election.
Fast forward to 2011, Besigye finally woke up to summon his election team. But the opposition candidate nearly collapsed. He realized how Museveni had for the last five years been punching holes in what he thought was a hot team of strategists. His team was, matter of fact, in shreds.
Insiders inform us how Besigye also got on the line to summon Bwanga. Although Bwanga didn’t heed Besigye’s order, perhaps to save the good doctor from developing cardiac arrest, she had in fact jumped over to the rival camp of Museveni already.
As Besigye was cursing while crying betrayal, Bwanga and Museveni were on the other hand doing things which indicated they had regularized their political marriage already, albeit in private.
Museveni not only appointed her new catch as his advisor on some post styled as traditional affairs, the president also provided her with a total of five police escorts. The commander-in-chief decreed the cops to be drawn from the police’s elite Very Important Persons Protection Unit (VIPPU).
Aside from the above trappings, Museveni also provided Bwanga with an official car plus a lead police car.
Bwanga who had negotiated for her new job meticulously, exploited her new position in the sun to the fullest.
She would be chauffeured around like a queen on a tour of her kingdom. Her lead car would sound the siren to alert the less mortal of Ugandans about her presence on the highway and to remind the other road users as well of their obligation to give way for the now Very Important Person.
No one would be allowed within her compound in Makindye and Seguku along Entebbe road without being subjected to a thorough body check first.
Now that she was carrying the title of a Very Important Person, Bwanga started breaching the law with impunity, so it is believed. She would point at any land as her’s and so it would become.
Those who were insolent enough as to put up resistance against the grabbing of their land, were roughed up by her escorts assisted by members of the police land protection Unit, who are by the way, obligated to fight land grabbing.
When some people came up in 2012 to ask who gave her the police escorts and why she was using them to torture Ugandans, the then police spokesperson, Asuman Mugenyi revealed how the President himself had given such instructions to the Uganda Police.
But most importantly, Mugenyi revealed how the President himself had provided Bwanga with the police escorts to protect her in the heat of 2011 general elections.
Equally important, Mugenyi was revealing the fact that Museveni had indeed grabbed Bwanga from Besigye and made her one of her campaigners in an election which Besigye went on to miserably lose.
By the time Mugenyi spoke, Bwanga had commandered land for Makerere University measuring fifteen acres. The land is sited in Makindye. She seized the land on the basis of her ‘position’ as the administrix of the estate of ‘her’ aunt, she referred to as Princess Nalinnya Hilda Namirembe Naluwembe Bwanga, who she claims, owned the land before passing on.
She claimed how she was dealing in the land in her capacity as the guardian of the Ddungu Heritage which is allegedly sited on this land and that she was doing so on behalf of the kingdom of Buganda.
Mengo disowned her and countered she wasn’t her agent at all.
But contrary to those assertions by Bwanga, the University as a matter of fact, obtained the land way back in 1913 going on later in 1955 to obtain a freehold title for the same property.
That not withstanding, Bwanga emerged many years later and instructively after becoming a presidential advisor to grab the same land, survey it and create plots out if it before going on to look for buyers.
But for the intervention of the acting registrar of lands, Robert Opio who ruled only last year that the land belongs to the university, Bwanga was fighting fervently with the assistance of armed security to fight off the genuine owner.
To demonstrate her invisibility, she had even ignored a court order issued by Justice Andrew Bashaija on August 30,2013 stopping anyone from alienating the land.
The staffers at the land office, possibly under the awe of Bwanga, had also chosen to risk the wrath of court by altering the ownership of the land which Justice Bashaija had forbidden other than angering the presidential aide.
Aside from the land belonging to the university, Bwanga had also seized a square mile of land in Tenga, Katabi in Entebbe with the assistance of the police land protection unit.
She daringly took charge of the land since it was owned by wealthy people including Gordon Wavamunno, Garuga Musinguzi, Aga Sekalala, Godfrey Kitakule of Letshego and former minister Urban Tibamanya who couldn’t do anything apart from begging court to assist them.
This particular chunk of land belonged to one David Kasimbazi. But in order to lay claim to it, Bwanga posed as one of the surviving daughters of the departed man.
Cornered by court during the trial of the dispute, Bwanga changed her stance. She clarified how she had actually trespassed on the land since the same had been shared out among the beneficiaries who decided to sell their allocated portions.
Justice Bashaija ruled against Bwanga going on to fine her a total of UGX400m shillings. We do not know if she paid or if she left the land.
To cap it all, the arrest of Bwanga for allegedly grabbing land in Luweero was merely one of the many excesses of the princess.
Even then, she was arrested merely because her victims happened to know some big people in State House who answered positively to their alarms.
But the circumstances that surrounded her release from prison without a police bond let alone a court bail, is more than enough to demonstrate how she is governed by a different set of laws altogether.
This is why she even had the audacity to tell off her captor, the rather feared Col Edith Nakalema following her release from Kigo.
“If I am simple, who picked me from prison and why was I not released on police bond,?” the powerful woman asked Nakalema.
No wonder, the usual politics of intrigue and envy, could have led to the arrest and arraignment of the powerful woman.