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Ugandan Minister of Works and Transport Edward Katumba Wamala has reportedly survived an assassination attempt after getting shot nine times in Kisaasi.

Daily Monitor reports that the incident happened Tuesday morning at around 9 am. Video footage circulating on social media reveals the four-star army general walking with his clothes stained in blood.

The paper says the Minister was rushed to Malcom Clinic before getting referred to Medipal Hospital in Kampala for further medical attention. 

Reports coming in indicate that Gen Katumba’s daughter, Brenda Wamala Nantongo, and his driver, Haruna Kayondo, have been killed.

Gen Katumba and his daughter were reportedly heading for the burial of their close relative in Najjanankumbi along Entebbe road.

Gen Katumba has been serving as the Minister of Works and Transport in the Ugandan cabinet, since 14 December 2019.

He previously served as the Chief of Defence Forces of Uganda, the highest military rank in the Uganda People’s Defense Force (UPDF), from 2013 until 2017.

He was the commander of land forces in the UPDF from 2005 to 2013. He also served as the Inspector General of Police (IGP) of the Uganda Police Force (UPF), the highest rank in that branch of Uganda’s government, from 2001 until 2005.

Wamala was the first active UPDF soldier to serve as the head of the UPF. This is a developing story and it will be updated as more details emerge. Nyamilepedia

The two leaders agreed to review the 2018 Joint Permanent Commission for Cooperation agreement with a view of ensuring expeditious implementation of agreed upon agreements. Image PSCU

 

Kenya and Burundi signed several agreements on Monday that are aimed at strengthening cooperation between the two East African nations.

President Uhuru Kenyatta and his Burundian counterpart Evariste Ndayishimiye signed the agreements at the Kisumu State Lodge.

Evariste Ndayishimiye arrived in the country on Monday morning for his two-day official visit.

The cooperation agreements which were signed touched on agriculture, public service, foreign affairs, trade, sports, and culture.

Addressing the press shortly after leading their respective delegation in bilateral talks, Uhuru said the two countries have agreed to strengthen and deepen their long-standing fraternal relations with the aim of fostering sustained socio-economic development.

“The cooperation between our two countries is built on a solid foundation of shared values and principles; to foster sustained socio-economic development and transformation of our two countries, a vibrant and united East African Community, and an integrated and prosperous Africa,” Uhuru said.

He added that there are enormous untapped business opportunities between Bujumbura and Nairobi, and directed relevant ministries to review and address bottlenecks inhibiting the growth of trade and investment between the two East African countries.

Uhuru also announced a resolution by Kenya and Burundi to prioritise education in their post-Covid-19 recovery plans, and that the two countries would back the 4th replenishment campaign of the Global Partnership Education (GPE), which aims to raise at least USD5 billion for investment in education.

The two leaders said that they will continue working together in advancing the African agenda on the global stage, and reiterated their countries commitment to the progress of the East African Community (EAC).

“On regional cooperation, we exchanged views on various development matters in the East African Community (EAC); and reaffirmed our commitment to continue working together in championing the EAC integration agenda and the African Union Agenda 2063. On international cooperation, we reiterated our commitment to continue working closely at the level of the United Nations (UN), with a view to advancing the Common African Agenda for Integration and Sustainable Development,” Uhuru said.

As part of efforts to strengthen Kenya-Burundi bilateral ties, two leaders agreed to review the 2018 Joint Permanent Commission for a Cooperation agreement with a view of ensuring expeditious implementation of agreed-upon agreements.

Ndayishimiye expressed his gratitude to Uhuru and the people of Kenya for the role the country played in stabilising Burundi through international peace-keeping efforts, as well as through trade facilitation.

“We are enjoying the ties between our two countries both in investments and trade. I recall the role Kenya played in peacekeeping in Burundi and the facilitation of trade through the port of Mombasa, and Kenyan investors already working in Burundi,” the Burundi leader said.

The Burundi leader who is accompanied by First Lady Angeline Ndayubaha Ndayishimiye was received by his host Uhuru and First Lady Margaret Kenyatta. -

As part of efforts to strengthen Kenya-Burundi bilateral ties, two leaders agreed to review the 2018 Joint Permanent Commission for a Cooperation agreement with a view of ensuring expeditious implementation of agreed-upon agreements.

Ndayishimiye expressed his gratitude to Uhuru and the people of Kenya for the role the country played in stabilising Burundi through international peace-keeping efforts, as well as through trade facilitation.

“We are enjoying the ties between our two countries both in investments and trade. I recall the role Kenya played in peacekeeping in Burundi and the facilitation of trade through the port of Mombasa, and Kenyan investors already working in Burundi,” the Burundi leader said.

The Burundi leader who is accompanied by First Lady Angeline Ndayubaha Ndayishimiye was received by his host Uhuru and First Lady Margaret Kenyatta. - KEVIN CHERUIYOT, The Star

  • President Uhuru Kenyatta (right) and President of The Republic of Burundi Evariste Ndayishimiye in Kisumu on May 31, 2021.
    PSCU
 
  • President Uhuru Kenyatta and his Burundian counterpart Evariste Ndayishimiye on Monday, May 31 addressed the media at State House Kisumu where they unveiled a number of deals that the two had agreed on.

    Speaking at the joint press conference, Uhuru noted that the countries had signed Memoranda of Understanding (MoUs) that would facilitate better relations and collaborative efforts.

    Uhuru revealed that the countries had pledged to collaborate on the agriculture, livestock and fisheries industries.

    In terms of public service, the neighbours would work together for joint capacity building and training.

    President Uhuru Kenyatta (standing) and President of The Republic of Burundi Evariste Ndayishimiye in Kisumu on May 31, 2021.           
            President Uhuru Kenyatta (standing) and President of The Republic of Burundi Evariste Ndayishimiye in Kisumu on May 31, 2021.
 
               PSCU

  

  • The countries would also work together in matters of foreign affairs and security operations.

    "Burundi has stabilised and enhanced its security, it's now safe to do business in the Country and we welcome foreign investors especially from Kenya to invest," Ndayishimiye noted. 

    The two countries will also work on sports culture and heritage as well as on the prioritisation of enhancing education standards in the region.

    Uhuru further encouraged the people-to-people relations between the two countries, by enhancing trade investments.

    He observed that there were channels to expand of the volume of trade that needed to be exploited.

    "We should make use of Lake Victoria as a means of transportation and livelihood," he added.

    On his part, Ndayishimiye stated that the visit was an opportunity for the two countries to strengthen the existing bilateral ties.  

    "We hope the MOUs we have signed will be implemented as soon as possible, we are committed to improving the business climate in our countries.

    "Burundi is ready for investors, I urge Kenyan investors to take advantage of the opportunities in Burundi," he urged.

     
    President Uhuru Kenyatta (standing) and President of The Republic of Burundi Evariste Ndayishimiye in Kisumu on May 31, 2021.
    President Uhuru Kenyatta and President of The Republic of Burundi Evariste Ndayishimiye in Kisumu on May 31, 2021.
    PSCU
 

Tanzanian opposition leader Tundu Lissu of the Chadema main opposition party greets supporters on July 27, 2020 as he returned from a three-year exile. He was shot 16 times in a 2017 attack. Photo AFP

 

Opposition political parties in Tanzania are beginning to find their voice again after being almost totally silenced over the last five years.

A few months after he was sworn in for his first term in office in 2015, former President John Pombe Magufuli, who died on March 17, 2021, banned opposition parties from conducting political activities until the next elections, which were held in October 2020.

The order, which was zealously enforced by the police force and regional and district administrators, effectively paralysed Tanzania’s opposition parties which normally depend on public meetings to rally grassroots support.

A number of party officials were arrested after they were accused of defying the order.

New freedom

However, with the demise of Dr Magufuli in March, the opposition has started to enjoy the kind of freedom they last tasted in the run-up to the 2015 elections.

Dr Magufuli’s successor, President Samia Suluhu, reached out to opposition parties in April when she promised to meet with them and discuss how best they can conduct political activities for the benefit of the country.

During the recent by-election in Muhambwe Constituency in Kigoma Region, which the ruling CCM won, opposition parties which contested for the seat said the vote was free and fair.

Indeed, opposition parties are now conducting political activities without the fear of their leaders being arrested and locked up as was the case for nearly five years since early 2016.

For instance, Chadema is currently holding internal meetings countrywide with an eye on the 2025 elections.

On the other hand, ACT-Wazalendo is strengthening itself at the grassroots by building the necessary structures at the village and district levels.

Some breathing space

The party’s leader Zitto Kabwe told The Citizen Sunday that the political situation in the country is basically unchanged, although there are some improvements in some basic freedoms.

“Yes, there is a new president who has created some breathing space on matters of fundamental freedoms like freedom of speech and the media regaining some freedom. Opposition parties are now freer to meet. However, obstacles to democracy still exist in the form of electoral laws and the Political Parties Act,” he noted.

Mr Kabwe said the party welcomes the opening up of civic space, and would work to ensure that legislative changes follow.

“Our utmost priority is the formation of an independent election commission and a review of the Political Parties Act by removing provisions that essentially criminalise politics. We are working towards that goal through the Tanzania Centre for Democracy, which is a platform that brings together all parties with representatives in Parliament,” he said.

The party’s participation in the by-elections in Muhambwe and Buhigwe as well as in five wards has shown that Tanzanians are ready to embrace change despite the existence of a toxic political environment in the last five years.

“It is the objective of ACT-Wazalendo to work together with other stakeholders to rebuild Tanzanian democracy and make it a resilient one. Our mind-set is that of 1992 when parties were allowed for the first time,” Mr Kabwe added.

“Our number one priority is the Political Parties Act and the electoral law so that we can finally have a truly independent electoral commission. The other thing, which is a national agenda, is the Constitution,” he said.

Countrywide tour

The Alliance for Democratic Change (ADC) said it was making final preparations for a countrywide tour during which it will conduct internal meetings and public rallies meant to recruit new members.

ADC national chairman Hamad Rashid Mohamed said Sunday that the party’s executive committee is pleased with the current political situation.

“We are happy that President Hassan wants to meet with us to deliberate on better means of doing politics in the country. Our executive committees asks that she does this as soon as possible,” he said.

Mr Mohammed urged opposition parties to come up with a common agenda that would be presented during their meeting with President Samia.

“I understand that every party has its own agenda and priorities, but it is also important to put our agenda together and present them to President Hassan,” he said.

The parties, according to him, can meet under the political parties’ council through the Registrar of Political Parties’ office and discuss what to raise during the meeting. - The Citizen

 

Kenya's leading telco Safaricom has unveiled a new data campaign that will see customers enjoy free data every day for the next 90 days.

Safaricom says the data will be customized to the customer’s usage profiles and they can redeem the free internet offers by dialling *544#.

The campaign according to Safaricom seeks to empower more customers to take their offline passions online as part of the country’s digital transformation agenda. According to data from the Communications Authority, the country has 25 million mobile broadband connections meaning about 60% of mobile phone users barely use the internet.

“Smartphones and the internet have become critical in our day to day lives, empowering us in different ways by connecting us to more opportunities. The 90-day free data campaign seeks to ensure that no customer is left behind by ensuring that all our customers can now access the internet, even at no cost,” said Peter Ndegwa, CEO, Safaricom.

Growing demand for data has seen Safaricom roll out campaigns such as ‘Browse Bila Waas’ that rewarded subscribers with free 500MB daily bonus data with every purchase of personalised no-expiry data bundle.

Safaricom has also partnered with Google to enable its customers to acquire quality 4G devices on flexible payment plans. Customers can purchase the Neon Ray Pro at a deposit of KES 500 with the balance payable at KES 20 per day over nine months. Every purchase of the device comes with free 1 GB of data. www.safaricom.co.ke

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