Use the church to combat corruption, bishop tells govt

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Mityana Diocese Bishop, Dr Stephen Kazimba, used the 40th martyrdom anniversary of Archbishop Janani Luwum at Namirembe Cathedral on Sunday to ask government to use the church to manage public funds.

Bishop Kazimba in his sermon as the day’s main celebrant, said using the church would be a lasting a solution to embezzlement and corruption that have been the regime’s main challenges.

“Prime Minister [Dr Ruhakana Rugunda], I think it is time your government thought of using the church to manage public resources. The church is transparent and an agent of change. Once we partner we can do a lot for our country,” Bishop Kazimba said.

In response, Dr Rugunda, who was the chief guest, said his government is independent and has all the necessary tools to fight corruption. He said the regime has established institutions that ensure accountability and prosecutes corrupt officials.

“Over the years NRM works with the church. But what I can say is that the government has fought corruption in many ways. We have the Anti-Corruption Court, office of the IGG [Inspector General of Government] and Auditor General. All these institutions fight corruptions,” Dr Rugunda said.

The leader of government business, however, admitted that corruption is somehow still a challenge to the government but insisted that the government was intensifying the fight against graft.

“True there are still a few cases of corruption being registered but we are working hard to have them addressed. This is kisanja hakuna mchezo (term of no jokes),” he said.

Bishop Kazimba and Justice James Ogoola praised Archbishop Luwum for the good services he did for his country.

Dr Rugunda applauded Archbishop Luwum for fighting for the rights of voiceless during the turbulent regime of president Idi Amin. He described the former regime as bitter for both young and adult persons a reason him, Olala Otunu [former UPC president and Mr Emmanuel Mutebile, Bank of Uganda Governor and many others fled the country.

“The death of Archbishop Luwum was the climax of Amin’s regime. His death united all Ugandans, including our neighbouring countries to fight against him,” Dr Rugunda said.

The premier urged the youth to protect the peace, stability and development the country has registered under the NRM government, saying no one should wish to see this county going back to turbulent times.

Archbishop Luwum was killed on February 16, 1977 at Nakasero by then president Amin following a period of great tension and showdown with the regime. He was born in 1924 at Mucwini and at the time of his death he was the Archbishop of Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi and Eastern Congo.

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