Former Speaker of Uganda’s Parliament Rebecca Alitwala Kadaga has sent a very clear message to 11th Parliament Speaker Anita Annet Among and her colleague MPs over their attempts to block Nyege Nyege Festival 2022.
The festival is expected to start on September 15 and end on September 18.
Speaker Among, who is also the Bukedea District Woman MP, and other lawmakers had sought to block the festival on grounds that it promotes immorality in the country.
But Kadaga, who is the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of East African Community (EAC) Affairs, has castigated Among and her colleagues for attempting to block a Festival that brings lots of money to her Busoga subregion.
Speaking during the Kyabazinga’s coronation anniversary at Bugembe on September 13, Kadaga used about four minutes to attack Among and others who wanted Nyege Nyege Festival stopped.
“I want to get explain to the people of Busoga this issue or Nyege Nyege. I want people to know that Nyege Nyege is a festival like any other. There is eating, singing, dancing. I want you to know that this is the biggest festival that comes to Busoga and brings in a lot of money,” Kadaga explained, addressing the Kyabazinga’s subjects in Lusoga.
“As I speak now, 4000 people have already come to Busoga for the festival. They are here in Jinja, others in Iganga and others in Lugazi. They are in our hotels, sleeping here and giving us money.”
Kadaga further noted that 2000 guests had already jetted in from Kenya, 1500 from Tanzania, 500 from Rwanda, others from South Sudan and the rest of the world.
She said that those who were claiming that Nyege Nyege Festival promotes immorality are liars and enemies of Busoga.
“Stop telling lies to our people that Nyege Nyege promotes immorality. Uganda’s government does not allow immorality. Therefore, you can’t buy a ticket and say you’re going to Busoga to enjoy immorality. You’d be foolish.”
Saluting Nyege Nyege Festival haters for promoting the event, Kadaga, who doubles as the Kamuli District Woman MP, invited the Basoga and other Ugandans to attend the festival in large numbers.
“I want to thank those fighting Nyege Nyege because when they talk about it, someone who didn’t know about Itanda Falls or Nyege Nyege googles it, learns that it is in Ugandan and then decides to come and attend. So, we thank all those fighting Nyege Nyege because they have marketed our thing,” said Kadaga.
“Therefore, I am asking you to come and attend Nyege Nyege Festival at the Itanda Falls.”
Noting that some people had already stocked wheat floor to bake chapati and that several others had already booked space and stalls to be able to cash in, Kadaga threw jabs at those using their authority to attempt to block the festival.
“It is absurd for them [some leaders] to use their platforms to try and stop Nyege Nyege. Is it right for any leader from Busoga to attempt to block money from coming to Busoga?” she asked.
She also wondered why leaders had not blocked other festivals such as Rolex Festival, Roast and Rhyme, Blankets and Wine, yet they were now rushing to block Nyege Nyege Festival which is meant to promote Busoga’s tourism and to benefit the Kyabazinga’s subjects.
“I have seen all sorts of festivals in Buganda and people have benefited out of them but some people are now saying that Nyege Nyege Festival won’t happen and you all accept it?” she wondered.
Kadaga then sent a clear message to Among and her anti-Nyege Nyege colleagues, saying they can only ‘pass their eyes’ through Busoga when she is dead.
“What I can assure you of is this: As long as I am still in Busoga and in this government, and as long as I am alive, nobody will underlook Busoga,” she swore.
She also called on Basoga to champion the interests of their subregion.
“As a Musoga, wherever you are, be alive to the interests of Busoga, promote the interests of Busoga and the economy of Busoga,” she rallied Kyabazinga’s subjects.
“You cannot block billions of money from coming here. Use your platforms to benefit the people.”
Video Credit: BABA TV UGANDA
It should be remembered that Speaker Anita Among had ordered that Nyege Nyege Festival be blocked, saying it was a hub of immorality.
But Prime Minister Robinah Nabbanja threw Speaker Anita Among’s orders in the dustbin and declared that nobody would stop Nyege Nyege Festival. (Read Story Here).
Museveni’s government has since released ‘tough conditions’ for the Nyege Nyege Festival. (Read Them Here).