A multi billion Muslim mosque that was initiated by the former president Idi Amin Dada in Lira town has been turned into residential houses.
The mosque that was directly funded by the late president Amin would accommodate over 5000 people once completed.
Now, some Muslims have taken over the incomplete mosque structure to host their families. Yusuf Kabil, a resident of Lira town says that he has lived in the mosque structure for more than 10 years, while other families have stayed there for more than 20 years. According to Kabil, the structure accommodates about 40 people, most of them Muslims. Rehema Asunta is also a resident in the incomplete mosque structure. Asunta says that as residents they are tasked with the responsibility of maintaining the building in proper hygiene and cleanliness.
She explains that some Muslims use the mosque structure for their daily prayers, but go to the main mosque for the Friday congregational prayers. Hajji Bashir Ahmed Joha, the Secretary Lango Muslim District Council says their attempt to fundraise funds to complete the mosque have been hampered by wrangles in the Muslim leadership.
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Joha says that Muammar Gadafi, the fallen Libyan leader offered to fund the completion of the Mosque three years ago but his government was overthrown before the construction work could resume. He claims that some people at the Uganda Muslim Supreme Council Headquarters in Kampala received huge sums of money from the Saudi government to complete the mosque but nothing was done.
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It is not yet clear how much money is needed to complete the Mosque.