Nestroy Tumwesigye, the Kyangwali sub-county LC V councilor in Kikuube district spent the night in police cells over allegedly attempting to assault the state minister for Works and Transport, Fred Byamukama.
The incident occurred Wednesday during a sensitization meeting for the implementers of the much-touted Parish Development Model (PDM) in the district.
Trouble started when most parish chiefs, community development officers (CDOs), and town clerks failed to show up for the meeting at the district headquarters, prompting the minister to halt the meeting and order the chief administrative officer (CAO) Milton Andrew Chelangat Kamalingin to track them down.
Chelangat instructed the chiefs to rush for the meeting else they face it rough prompting many to dash to the meeting venue. However, before the meeting could proceed, Amlan Tumusiime, the Kikuube resident district commissioner (RDC) informed the minister that some parish chiefs were extorting money from the PDM beneficiaries – promising to help them to open bank accounts and form SACCOs yet the entire program is for free.
According to Tumusiime, the parish chiefs are extorting between Shs 50,000 and Shs 200,000 from the PDM beneficiaries. The minister couldn’t have any of this. He ordered the immediate arrest of the implicated parish chiefs, saying their actions are illegal. Byamukama’s directive to arrest the parish chiefs didn’t go down well with Tumwesigye who charged at the minister and attempted to assault him.
However, the minister’s security swung into action and apprehended the councillor, whisking him off to Kikuube central police station. Commenting on the councillor’s act, Byamukama wondered why a leader would protect parish chiefs accused of extorting money from the public, saying that he could have been an accomplice. Byamukama halted the disbursement of funds to PDM beneficiaries until when all the irregularities are sorted out.
Tumwesigye was later transferred to Hoima city central police station. Julius Hakiza, the Albertine Region police spokesperson confirmed the councillor’s detention, saying that they have preferred against charges of threatening violence, sabotaging government programs, and obstruction.
The RDC condemned the councillor’s conduct, saying it was a total shame for leaders in the district. This is not the first time Tumwesigye is being arrested over the assault. In May, Tumwesigye was arrested for allegedly assaulting Zulia Nyakahara, the Kiziranfumbi town council female councillor, who also doubles as the district finance secretary on April 28, 2022, during a field visit by the minister of state for Lands, Sam Mayanja to Nyairongo village in Kaseeta B parish in Kabwoya sub-county.
The minister was in Kikuube to investigate the brutal eviction of over 20,000 people from Bugoma forest land that the Bunyoro kingdom leased to Hoima Sugar Ltd.
The two councillors developed a misunderstanding for an unknown reason prompting Tumesigye to slap Nyakahara. As a result, Nyakahara filed an assault case at Kikuube central police station vide SD Ref 38/28/04/2022. Police then commenced investigations into the case against the councillor that led to his arrest and detention.
He was later produced before the court and charged with assault and released on bail. The incident comes less than a week after another state minister for Works and Transport (works) Musa Ecweru was slapped in Amuria by an allegedly mentally disturbed man last Sunday while attending mass.