5 December 2012

Uganda: DP Holds Benedicto Kiwanuka Memorial Mass Today

A memorial mass for Uganda's first Prime Minister and former Chief Justice Benedicto Kiwanuka is to be held today in remembrance for his contribution towards constitutionalism in the country.

The function, organised by the Democratic Party (DP) is to be presided over by Emmanuel Cardinal Wamala at Christ the King Church in Kampala today at 1.30pm.

Addressing journalists at the party headquarters in Kampala yesterday, DP spokesperson Jude Mbabali said the event is part of the activities to be held before the search for his remains begins. The party wants to give Kiwanuka a decent burial.

"We have started this initiative to remember Kiwanuka as a hero. We need to know where he was buried so that he is accorded a decent burial," he said.

The party has also hired a team of investigators and pathologists to find the remains of Kiwanuka. He said DP regards Kiwanuka as the greatest man in the history of Uganda because of his values of honesty, justice and advancing the common good of the nation.

Kiwanuka died on September 22, 1972 allegedly on orders of the former president of Uganda, Idi Amin, shortly after serving as the Chief Justice under him (Amin).

Mbabali said they had contacted the family of Kiwanuka and confirmed that they had accepted to take part in the mass. He said they suspect his remains are in Nakasongola near the army barracks or in Luzira Prison near the Murchison Bay.

"According to our investigations, Kiwanuka was buried in the same grave with former Governor of Bank of Uganda, Joseph Mubiru Mubiru," he said.

Kiwanuka was born on May 8, 1922 in Kisaabwa village in present-day Bukomansimbi district.

Who is Benedicto Kiwanuka?

• Attended a matriculation Law course in Lesotho (1950-1952) and later did a bar course at the University College of London (1952-1956).

• Practiced law privately from 1956 to 1959 and was appointed DP President General in 1958.

• Served as Chief Minister in March 1961 after DP won the majority seats in Parliament.

• Prime Minister in 1962 in the New National Assembly.

• Chief Justice during Amin's regime and died on September 22, 1972.

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