Family fights over Museveni House donation

There is a bitter fight between the children of former FRONASA (Front for National Salvation) war hero James Karambuzi over a two-storeyed building donated by President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni in memory of their late father.

 Karambuzi who hailed from Kabale was executed in 1973 on the orders of the former president, Idi Amin Dada after being charged with treason.  

He was executed alongside David Kangyire, a student at Kigezi College Butobere, and former Kabale District Commissioner, Joseph Bitwari.

 The trio was executed by firing squad commanded by one Lt. Col. Fadhul who was attached to Makenke Military Barracks in Mbarara District. Karambuzi reportedly left behind a family of 10 children whose mother also died of mental illness the same year her husband was killed.  

The couple is currently survived by a son and two daughters.

In memory of Karambuzi, Museveni built a 32 roomed commercial building in Kabale Municipality along Kabale – Katuna road to support his family. However, Karambuzi sisters accuse their younger brother Happy Karambuzi of using the building alone. They have since petitioned Museveni asking him to intervene in the matter.  

Karambuzi’s elder sister, Constance Akankwasa, says that their brother also received a truck, which he uses alone and repeatedly turns down their request for financial assistance. Akankwasa says that they are struggling to cope up with life even when the president donated commercial property to support the family for the sacrifice made by their late brother.

Karambuzi’s young sister, Annet Kenyangye, says that her brother vowed that she would never have a share of Karambuzi’s property because their mother reportedly gave birth to her after the death of her husband.      

Happy Karambuzi has asked his sisters to ”back off” his property. He said the building was given to him alone after he met Museveni through the former Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda and tabled seven financial requests to the president. Happy said that the president asked him to tell his sisters that they would get their own financial assistance from the statehouse.  

Karambuzi blamed his uncle Warren Turyahikayo for being behind the accusations against him. He claimed that Turyahikayo was instrumental in getting the commercial building from the president and therefore expected to have a room or two for his own income generation, which was not granted. 

Speaking to our reporter in a phone interview, the former Statehouse Comptroller, Lucy Nakyobe, said the house was built to support the family of the late Karambuzi and not an individual. Nakyobe who directly monitored the construction works explained that all the biological children and grandchildren of the late Karambuzi were shareholders on the building.  

URN has also learnt that Nakasongola Resident District Commissioner, Darius Nandinda tried to intervene in the matter when he was still the president’s representative in Kabale District.

 Nakyobe confirmed that she sent Nandinda to settle the matter with the same guidance that Happy Karambuzi should stop claiming sole ownership of any of the presidential donations to the Karambuzi family. 

Robert Bugabo, an official from the NRM office rubbished claims by Happy Karambuzi that Annet Kenyangye was not a biological daughter of the late Karambuzi. Bugabo explained that he was neighboring Karambuzi’s home in Mwanjari Southern Division Kabale Municipality and he knows that Kenyangye grew up in Karambuzi’s family. 

Bugabo noted that whereas Kenyangye’s biological attachment to James Karambuzi could be subject to discussion, her entitlement on the property was supported by the law since she was born and raised in the family of the late Karambuzi. 

Nakyobe has asked the aggrieved sisters to report the matter to the current Kabale RDC Godfrey Nyakahuma for assistance and report back to her in case the matter is not solved


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