Agriculture Minister Hope Mwesigye used Wednesday's Liberation Day celebrations to publicly apologize, on behalf of NRM MPs in Kabale district, for the disunity in the ruling party.
Mwesigye, who is at odds within most MPs in the Kigezi region, said the division in their parliamentary caucus had led to confusion among NRM supporters. She said she was sorry for offenses committed by her and by the MPs and asked for forgiveness.
Many people that attended the celebrations applauded the apology. However, noticeably displeased by this show of repentance were the Members of Parliament who said Mwesigye's repentance was disingenuous and self-serving.
Henry Banyenzaki, the incumbent Rubanda West MP, says the parliamentarians had done no wrong and Mwesigye was out of place to apologize on their behalf. He says the Minister should have apologized for her own actions, particularly her role in the scam surrounding the financing of the 2007 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting.
Banyenzaki says if she doesn't come clean about how she allegedly misused government funds, she could lose her seat as Kabale Woman MP.
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The Ndorwa East MP, Wilfred Niwagaba, was also angered by Hope Mwesigye's apology. He says the last thing Kabale needs is a politician with a ‘holier than thou' attitude.
Niwagaba says disunity within the NRM in Kabale will only end when Mwesigye loses the elections.
Also displeased with the Minister's statement is Father Gaetano Batanyenda, a Catholic priest involved in a long-standing feud with Mwesigye.
In her speech, Mwesigye apologized for any bad blood between Batanyenda and herself. The priest says this is not enough.
Batanyenda says Mwesigye needs to apologize to him in person for any statement made to be deemed serious.
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Mwesigye publicly ridiculed Batanyenda for his celibacy. She allegedly said the opposition-leaning priest should get a wife to distract him from interfering in Kabale's politics.
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