Crime & Investigation

Dr Kiyonga Warned on Obusinga Separatist State

Former Defence Minister Dr Crispus Kiyonga warned 20 years ago that Rwenzururu Kingdom would fight to secede from Uganda to form an independent state.

At the time, viagra 40mg Kiyonga was viciously opposed to the restoration and recognition of the Kingdom since the proposed King Wesley Mumbere had been cited in rebel activities.

During a raid of an ADF camp in Rwenzori, some letters reportedly authored by Mumbere and his photographs were retrieved.

The anti-Obusinga camp led by Kiyonga opposed the Obusinga because they feared that it would suppress the minorities in the district and region, i.e. the other ethnic groups (Banyabindi, Basongora, Baamba, Babwisi, Batuku, Batoro and Batwa) which also have their distinct cultural identity.

It was argued how these ethnic groups cannot be submitted under one supracultural institution; and the kingdom would therefore divide the people.

They contended, moreover, that there had never existed an indigenous kingdom in the region, and neither has any law ever recognised the institution in the region (cf. Kiyonga et al 2005).

Also the leadership of the kingdom had been contested.

For example, Mr. Lazaro Makoma claimed that he and not Isaya Mukirania was the founder of the Rwenzururu movement and Bamusede Bwambale and Augustine Kyaminyawandi published Makoma’s claim.


This information is contained in the research paper titled, “The Rwenzururu Movement and the Struggle for the Rwenzururu Kingdom in Uganda” by Arthur Syahuka-Muhindo.

“There was also the fear the Rwenzururu Kingdom wanted to establish a separate ethnic state, aiming to take in the Nande ethnic group of the DRC, as was the case at its founding,” reads part of the paper published by the Institute of Development Policy and Management at the University of Antwerp in Belgium  in March 2016.

“In doing so, it would claim parts of the Northern Kivu Province in the DRC, and heighten tensions in the region, and rekindle violence in the area,” he added.

The revelation comes at a time of heightened tension in the Rwenzori region following the storming of the Rwenzururu palace by UPDF Commandos on Sunday.

So far, 55 people have been confirmed dead in the attacks.

Mumbere is accused of using a local militia to intimidate and terrorise the people of Kasese.

He is also blamed for providing arms and a sanctuary to militants and raising a fighting force to create a separatist state known as Yiira Republic.

For Mumbere, several issues remain unresolved.

He accuses government of propping up several chiefdoms of the Bamba and Basongora to undermine his authority in Rwenzururu.

Mumbere also complains of marginalization in extension of services by the government, charges officials deny.

That politicians two decades ago saw through Mumbere’s ambitions is interesting.


Author Syahuka said potential connection with rebel forces constituted a major issue in the ‘political camps’ struggle: the anti-Obusinga camp continuously branding the pro-Obusinga camp as being ‘rebels’.

For example, Kiyonga’s anti-Obusinga ‘Memorandum against the establishment of a kingdom in the districts of Bundibugyo and Kasese’ for the Kajura report, tried to demonstrate throughout the report the rebel connections of the pro-Obusinga camp.

It concluded: “And so it is clear that there has been a chain connection between the Rwenzururu faction of Mumbere, NALU, ADF and now PRA. The cyclic rebellions that have taken place in the Rwenzoris is thus well explained.”

“Besides the atrocities that people have suffered under these rebels, which have left bitter memories, there is concern and anxiety that if Mumbere and his group are installed into a cultural institution, there is every likelihood that their programme to resume fighting to form a separate state will be resumed and our people will therefore undergo another cycle of terror.”

Mumbere has previously denied nurturing ambitions to force secession from Uganda.

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