Uganda: Govt Interfering With Church, Says Archbishop Lwanga

Uganda: Govt Interfering With Church, Says Archbishop Lwanga

Photo: The Observer

Kampala Archbishop Cyprian Kizito Lwanga, right, talks to Church of Uganda Archbishop Stanley Ntagali

Entebbe — Kampala Archbishop Cyprian Kizito Lwanga has said he is set to hold talks with President Museveni to discuss allegations of government recruiting clergy as spies.

"All along His Excellency [President Museveni] has been saying religious leaders are interfering with politics, it is the reverse. It is the government interfering with the Church. If I went and recruited somebody from the army, I think I would be arrested. So, I call upon whoever is concerned in this saga to tell the truth. If it is true that ISO, CMI and ESO are recruiting from my priests, then they are the ones interfering with the administration of the church," he said.

Archbishop Lwanga made the remarks on the sidelines of the Inter Religious Council of Uganda (IRCU) two-day governance retreat in Entebbe yesterday.

"On Easter Monday, His Excellency (Museveni) called me just to verify and he did well. I talked and I told him what I have told you and told the congregation," he said.

Not arrested

He dismissed allegations that he had been arrested by police over the Easter weekend, saying it was the IGP Martins Okoth Ochola who had gone to check on him.

"He [IGP] rung me and said he wanted to talk to me. I said fine and that's where he found me. We talked very nicely and he left. But because he has many guards with guns travelling in a tinted vehicle, people couldn't identify him. People thought they had come to arrest me which is not true," he said.

Archbishop Lwanga said he was not living in any fear after his remarks of spies in the Church that he made on Good Friday.

He condemned the recent remarks made by Security minister Gen Elly Tumwine who saw no fault in government recruiting priests as spies.

"It's totally wrong and misleading, we don't ordain priests to become spies," the Archbishop said.

The Mufti of Uganda, who is the chairperson of the IRCU, Sheikh Shaban Ramadhan Mubaje, said the recent attacks and spy allegations in their institutions will not stop them from carrying out their work as religious leaders.

"I got an anonymous call, nothing showed on the screen of my phone, the caller told me that your religious leaders, in all your faith, both Christians as well as Muslims, some are working for government and have been recruited; in the Anglican church, Catholics and even Islamic faith so I told him am not aware, then he told me to be careful, saying you might be the next Janan Luwum and I told him, well if God is calling me that way, fine," he said.

He added: "Security comes from God, why are big people being shot yet they have security, so in my humble opinion security is assured from God and then of course government should ensure security not only of leaders but everybody. It's very sad how many people are being killed in cold blood," he said.

He said a few days after the incident, somebody went at night at his gate and threw a letter inside his perimeter fence.

"So the following day when the guards came and gave it to me, I opened it and found a list of all those who have been recruited to work for ISO, ESO, CMI and other organs and these included Catholic priests, Anglican priests and Sheikhs," he said.

He further said that on the Easter Sunday while preparing for service, his security saw a black tinted car without number plates parked near his gate which sped off as his security approached it.

"They thought I was going to walk through my gate to go to the Cathedral, it didn't happen, so when the security went near to access who it was, he turned round and rushed only to realise there were no number plates, so what had he come to do, probably to crush the Archbishop?" he said.

He condemned the recent remarks made by Security minister Gen Elly Tumwine who saw no fault in government recruiting priests as spies.

"Its totally wrong and misleading, we don't ordain priests to become spies," the Archbishop said.

The Mufti of Uganda, Sheikh Shaban Ramadhan Mubaje, told journalists that the recent attacks and spy allegations in their institutions will not stop them from carrying out their work as religious leaders.


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Publish date : 2018-04-06 06:58:27
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