Embattled politician Muhammad Baswale Kezaala has resigned as Chairman of the opposition Democratic Party, following days of speculation and hate speech.
On Monday, Kezaala who last year lost the Jinja mayoral seat to his perennial rival, NRM’s Majid Batambuze called a press conference in Eastern town to announce his resignation and moves to take up his new job in President Museveni’s NRM government as an envoy pending Parliament’s approval.
Muhammad Baswale Kezaala said, ” I served the opposition for a long time and it is high time I went for my new job as a Deputy Ambassador because President Museveni saw me fit to serve the nation in that new capacity.”
“It is regrettable, however, that since that date there has scarcely been an hour passed without one prominent member of the party or another talking about my impending resignation. That certainly does not help the party.”
He then announced his immediate resignation and was thanked for his long service to the party and the country.
“I will be unable to serve the Democratic party because of my imminent international posting.”
The Democratic Party’s youth wing had resolved to have Baswari Kezaala, resign his office within 48 hours.
The acting party secretary general, Gerald Siranda dismissed reports that the party is engulfed in a crisis after losing Kezaala and State Minister for Youth, Nakiwala Kiyingi. “Back in the day, we had DP member crossing including fomer leader, Paul Ssemwogerere, we had Kamanda Bataringaya a strong member of the party cross, Dr Specioza Kazibwe crossed but the party has existed . This is not news for us,” Siranda argued.
Kezaala, who has for over 14 years been a key figure in the politics of Jinja, has in the past fought many political battles between him and some local leaders of the NRM party in Jinja.
On 15th September 2001 while still a budding political activist and then a very vocal Uganda Young Democrats national chairman, Kezaala while in the middle of term as Jinja central division secretary for works threw in the towel opting to serve as an ordinary councillor. He said, he often found difficulty to talk freely on the day-today issues as part of the cabinet.
Former IGG Faith Mwondha in 2009 instructed the municipal councillors to remove Kezaala from the deputy mayor’s office for abuse of office and breach of the leadership code. Kezaala was accused of causing a financial loss worth sh16.6 million to the district but was later reinstated.
He once proposed that all political aspirants for various elective positions should take an HIV test to serve as role models in the fight against the scourge.
Mr Kezaala argued that all politicians, including those at local councils, wield influence on people’s opinions and if they test for HIV publicaly. it will encourage their followers to do the same.