By Michael Atwakiire
Sheema: The Minister for Science, Innovation and Technology, Dr Elioda Tumwesigye Katsyamutwe, who is also the Sheema Municipality legislator, has blasted his rival Dickson Kateshumbwa aka Katesh, a former Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) commissioner, whom he said isn’t fit for any political office in Sheema District.
Minister Tumwesigye’s words came after Kateshumbwa, aspiring for the Sheema Municipality MP seat, accused Tumwesigye of allegedly intimidating him and his supporters and calling him a selfish man.
Kateshumbwa alleged that the Minister uses his private institutions to milk voters, whereby some HIV/AIDS patients have been denied access to ARV drugs because of not supporting him (Tumwesigye.)
Among Kateshumbwa’s many allegations is that the Minister also facilitates media personnel like Tamale Mirundi to tarnish his name.
However, during an interview with Minister Tumwesigye on Tuesday, he told this website that he has been hearing those allegations but that he doesn’t have time to waste on negativity, because he is busy lobbying for Ugandans.
“How can I camp at his gate, to do what now? How can I waste my time on a person who is failing himself? I can’t employ even one person to monitor Dickson, he is a super coward! That’s why he keeps circulating those negativities. Instead I hear that his camp calls people as if they are taking them for a meeting and they end up taking them at his home,” Tumwesigye said.
He added that Kateshumbwa leads among people who have really contributed nothing to their home areas in Uganda.
“A person who stands in public and he or she accuses me for denying people access to health services, isn’t worthy leadership. I borrowed loans from banks to build a hospital in Sheema, where TB , HIV/AIDS patients get free treatment. But this is the same person accusing me of selfishness; remember with all his wealth, he doesn’t even own a stall of tomatoes in Sheema. I have several times borrowed loans to buy scanners and machines for our hospital with the aim of saving people’s lives. But with all his wealth, it was after he declared his intention to join politics that he contributed only Shs500,000 to buy theatre operation table for Kabwohe Health Centre IV. He also contributed only Shs200,000 for Kigarama Health Centre III; that’s him!
And you come out telling people that you love your home area; at least first start a business of tomatoes in Kabwohe or a shop in Sheema District. Don’t be like a person who eats chicken once and goes around telling people how he/she ate chicken, not knowing that some people eat it everyday.”
He also refuted allegations that he uses government funds to develop his personal business facilities. “Now he thinks that everyone is like him who doesn’t know how to differentiate government’s money from his; he forget that President Yoweri Museveni said he cleaned URA because of corruption. It’s shaming for a person to accuse me for nothing. It is alleged that he resigned from URA after smelling a rat; so now he goes around telling people that the security at his home was given to him by President Museveni just to clear his image by showing people that he is in good terms with the President, which isn’t true,” the Minister stressed.
It should be noted that recently, Kateshumbwa petitioned the National Resistance Movement (NRM) Secretariat Kampala for security, claiming that that Minister Tumwesigye intimidates him and his supporters.
However, commenting about the allegations, Tumwesigye said that Kateshumbwa has since been reported to Sheema Central police station on allegations of intimidating one of the leaders of the NRM leaders in Sheema municipality, a one Kabazeyo.
But when we talked to Kateshumbwa, he said that he doesn’t have any money to bribe voters but that he has evidence on his phone showing how the Minister’s camp compromises voters and that he has never intimidated anyone.