Police fire tear gas to disperse Bobi Wine supporters at Med Kaggwa burial

A tear gas canister fired to disperse Bobi Wine supporters

A tear gas canister fired to disperse Bobi Wine supporters

Police fired tear gas to disperse a procession by People Power supporters at the funeral of Uganda Human Rights Commission chairperson, the late Hajji Muhammad Kaggwa alias Med Kaggwa in Mpigi district.

Trouble started when People Power supporters started following the Kyadondo East MP, Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu alias Bobi Wine after the burial of Kaggwa at his ancestral home in Lufuka village in Mpigi town council on Thursday afternoon.

They were chanting People Power slogans as they followed the legislator as he walked to his vehicle that was parked about 500 meters away from the burial place. Police officers attempted to block the group that kept growing to clear the road for traffic in vain.  

Joseph Turya, the Katonga region police spokesperson, says they were forced to use tear gas to open the road which had been blocked by the huge crowd to ease movement for other road users.

He explained that whereas several people turned up for the ceremony,  a section of the mourners decided to block the road demanding that Bobi Wine addresses them making it difficult for others to drive away.

Earlier on, Bobi Wine, who arrived late for the funeral, had been stopped by security from accessing the VIP tent but the crowd forced security to find a seat for the 'ghetto president' when they booed down security and shouted down ongoing speeches. 

Kaggwa collapsed and passed away on Wednesday morning while driving himself to work. Speaking at the funeral, Al Haj Moses Kigongo, the National Resistance Movement (NRM) vice chairperson, challenged people holding positions of responsibility to emulate the late Kaggwa by availing themselves easily to citizens.

According to Kigongo, Kaggwa wasn’t in the class of people who show off because they hold positions of responsibility in the country. Kigongo also challenged leaders at all levels to assess their behavior to ascertain whether they would be mourned and praised like Kaggwa.  

Mourners carry Med Kaggwa's body to his grave

The vice president Edward Kiwanuka Ssekandi delivered President Yoweri Museveni’s condolence message and Shs 10m to the family. He commended the late Kaggwa for dedicating his time and effort to promote human rights at both the national and international levels.

Museveni said that during Kaggwa’s tenure as chairperson Uganda Human Rights Commission, he ably led the institution in implementing its national mandate of protecting and promoting human rights. He noted that Kaggwa will be remembered as a qualified man who steered the commission to the level that made everyone proud.

Several speakers at the funeral highlighted the deceased’s good deeds and hard work in various capacities. Kaggwa represented Kawempe South constituency in the Constituent Assembly and in the sixth parliament.  

He also served as state minister in the Office of the President and represented Uganda in the East African legislative assembly. Sheikh Umar Bakar described Kaggwa as a trustworthy person, unlike private school heads who are fleecing parents with demands for unnecessary requirements. 

He noted that it is unbelievable that most private schools demand various requirements such as reams of papers from learners even in nursery level who can’t use them. 

© 2016 Observer Media Ltd