UGANDA: ENGINEER FINDS THE “MAGIC BULLET” TO END POVERTY AMONG YOUTHS THROUGH SMALL SCALE FARMING

 

engineer onono
Engineer Moses Onono, measuring the giant lira (melia) tree which is only eight years old but already big enough for timber.ter a caption

“I wanted very much to commit suicide because I saw no value in life after losing both parents and dropping out of school. I was only saved by a Good Samaritan who forcefully took away the poison from my hands before I could take it”

 “I was persuaded by my local leaders to come to Homa Farm for training on how I can utilize our vast land to earn a living instead of contemplating suicide. I have now abandoned the previous idea of committing suicide. I want to go back home and concentrate in water melon farming as an enterprise”

“If an acre to a young person can bring 20 million shillings, then we have found the “magic bullet” in employing youths. If agriculture can make you live your dream life, then youths will look to agriculture instead of looking for employment elsewhere”

GULU-UGANDA: Eighteen-year old Akello Brenda thought of committing suicide after she dropped out of Oguru Primary School in Awach Sub-county, Gulu district because there was no one to pay her school fees. She lost her mother in 2008 and her father in 2014.

“I wanted very much to commit suicide because I saw no value in life after losing both parents and dropping out of school. I was only saved by a Good Samaritan who forcefully took away the poison from my hands before I could take it”, recalls Akello.

However, she has had a change of heart after she joined Homa Farm Limited Training Hub on May 15, 2017 where she is receiving new skills and knowledge on how she can actually earn up to 20 million Uganda shillings ($5530dollars) from an acre of land if one chooses the right enterprise at the right time (season).

“I was persuaded by my local leaders to come to Homa Farm for training on how I can utilize our vast land to earn a living instead of contemplating suicide. I have now abandoned the previous idea of committing suicide. I want to go back home and concentrate in water melon farming as my enterprise” says Akello.

Homa Farm Limited is the brain child of a young engineer, Moses Onono, who had to abandon his government job in favor of farming because he could not make ends meet through government work. Homa Farm Limited is located forty kilometers east of Gulu the Provincial Capital of northern Uganda.

The vision of Homa Farm Limited is to operate and run a family based and sustainable agri-business that provides solid returns for both land owners and its operational costs so that future generations can continue farming.

Its mission is to improve the development of farmers and land owners in northern Uganda by training, improving products and services on sustainable and profitable way.

“We had over thirty relatives in my home during the war in northern Uganda and we could not make ends meet. We wanted to offer opportunities to our relatives whom we knew would be a challenge if we didn’t transform them. Some of them have graduated now and we now have no conflict over our land”, says Engineer Moses Onono.

Currently, there are ninety students at the farm who are being sponsored by Master Card Foundation, a Canadian firm, for a five-month on-job training costing 750,000 Uganda shillings ($207 dollars) per student.

Homa farm divides an acre of land to twenty-two students where each student is taught on the best practice of planting a crop of his or her choice which will earn them a maximum of one million shillings ($276 dollars) over the period of five months.

Akello chose to plant water melon on her piece of land and she expects to earn 500,000 shillings ($138 dollars) during her stay at Homa farm.

Each student who passes through Foma farm take home 70% (percent) of the proceeds from the sale of his or her crop while Homa farm retains 30% (percent) which it uses to help new students.

“If an acre to a young person can bring 20 million shillings, then we have found the “magic bullet” in employing youths. If agriculture can make you live your dream life, then youths will look to agriculture instead of looking for employment elsewhere”, says engineer Onono.

 

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MUSEVENI’S BILL FINALLY TABLED BEFORE UGANDA PARLIAMENT AS BOMBS SCARE OPPOSITION MPS

yoweri museveni

Uganda’s Dictator Yoweri Museveni, for 31 years now wants to rule for life

“Our rules state that once ordered to exit the chambers, you exit and if you refuse, you get evicted”

“Even if Kadaga was under pressure from somewhere, what we went through should not have happened under her watch. She should have exercised her powers and protected us”

“I am and have been, for many years, a great admirer of our leader, Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, but how can one individual be the only one able to run a nation of nearly 40 million souls? Permanency is all very well, and has in many ways served us well, but it speaks very ill of Ugandans that we have been totally incapable of fielding any other candidate”

GULU-UGANDA: The controversial Constitutional Amendment Bill which will allow Uganda’s dictator Yoweri Museveni rule for life, and which brought fracas in parliament on Wednesday, September 27, 2017, has officially been tabled before a one sided parliament for its first reading on Tuesday, October 3, 2017.

Igara West Member of Parliament, Mr. Raphael Magyezi, who belongs to the ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM) party, tabled the bill that seeks to amend Article 102 (b) of the 1995 Constitution to scrap the age limit for presidential candidates from the constitution.

Article 102 (b) states that “A person is not qualified for election as President unless that person is not less than thirty-five years and not more than seventy-five years of age”.

Museveni, whose official record show that he was born on September 13, 1944, would not be legible to stand again in 2021 as he would be above seventy-five years of age unless this article is amended.

Opposition legislators boycotted parliament after twenty-five of their own were suspended by Speaker Rebecca Kadaga for causing fracas in the Chamber on September 27, 2017, during which security personnel raided parliament and forcefully removed the suspended MPs from the House. This led to a fist-fight among the legislators.

Legislators who belong to the opposition were not in the House on October 3 when the Bill was tabled before parliament which kick started the process of removing Museveni’s last obstacle to his life presidency scheme from the constitution.

The Speaker, Ms. Rebecca Kadaga, while referring the Bill to the House Committee on Legal and Parliamentary Affairs for scrutiny, insists that the people, who are the voters, must first be consulted for the Bill to be passed into law.

In 2005, Museveni engineered a similar move and removed the two-term limits provision from the 1995 constitution using his parliamentary majority; which allowed him to stand for the third elective position in 2006.

As if that is not bad enough, there have been three grenade attacks on the residences of three legislators belonging to the opposition parties on Thursday last week after the fracas in parliament; and on Tuesday when the controversial Bill was tabled before Parliament.

On Thursday the home of Mr. Moses Kasibante, the MP for Rubaga North in the outskirts of Kampala Capital City, was attacked by unknown gunmen, using what police sources say was stun grenades. This happened a day after the fracas in parliament.

Then on Tuesday, when the bill was due to be tabled in the afternoon, residences of two other opposition legislators were attacks in a similar manner using the same kind of grenades in the cover of darkness.

The two legislators are Mr. Allan Ssewanyana, the MP of Makindye West and Mr. Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine, the MP of Kyadondo East, all located on the outskirts of the City.

In Uganda, it is only the police who imports stun grenades to control riots. Stun grenades make striking flash and a loud bang upon explosion but is considered non-lethal but can inflict damage on properties and severe injuries on human beings upon impact.

While government spokesman Mr. Ofono-Opondo says the grenades attacks are the works of the opposition for political capital and to attract attention and sympathy, the opposition says they are State engineered to silence the opposition on the Controversial Bill before parliament.

Speaker Kadaga, Ugandans react to fracas

Ms. Kadaga has had a relatively good working relationship with the Opposition lawmakers, but following Wednesday’s ugly scene, the honeymoon between them might be over.

“Our rules state that once ordered to exit the chambers, you exit and if you refuse, you get evicted”, one of the national papers quotes speaker Kadaga who was defending her record.

“Even if Kadaga was under pressure from somewhere, what we went through should not have happened under her watch. She should have exercised her powers and protected us” says Agago woman PM, Ms. Judith Franca Akello from her hospital bed after being admitted following the fracas.

“I am and have been, for many years, a great admirer of our leader, Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, but how can one individual be the only one able to run a nation of nearly 40 million souls? Permanency is all very well, and has in many ways served us well, but it speaks very ill of Ugandans that we have been totally incapable of fielding any other candidate”, writes John Nagenda, in his Saturday Column the state owned New Vision newspaper.

 

UGANDA: ONE MAN’S EXPERIENCE IN THE HANDS OF USA VOLUNTEER MEDICAL TEAM

 

MMF 3

A scene inside the theater of St. Mary’s Hospital, Lacor.

“Those who have come to consult the urologist should line up here”

“You should not eat or drink anything from midnight of Monday, September 11, 2017 until after the operation on Tuesday. You should report here with an attendant one hour before we take you to the theater”

GULU-UGANDA:  Every year since 2010, a team of volunteer surgeons and other medical professionals from the United States of America, under their organization; the Medical Missions Foundation, travel to offer the most basic surgical services to the people of war ravaged northern Uganda for free.

Research show that nine out of ten people around the world cannot access even the most basic surgical services. There are so many reasons for this. There is lack of professionals to do such operations in developing countries and also the fact that the cost of carrying out such surgeries is way above the means of ordinary people.

The “well-to-do” travel abroad for such vital services like plastic surgery. These American volunteers have come to bridge the gap.

The mission, which came to Gulu district, in northern Uganda, attracted 340 American surgeons, nurses and other volunteers who carried out 872 surgical procedures and made 7,800 clinic visits since it began in 2010.

I happen to be one of the over one thousand patients who reported to St. Mary’s Hospital Lacor surgical Ward II on Sunday, September 10, 2017 to receive the services from the medics.

As precursor to this day, I had to undergo a number of tests and screenings by doctors from Lacor hospital to enable me reach to this level.

The guests’ corner of the ward was in total chaos as patients struggled to get attention of the medics who were calling out names to be screened  from the list of patients who had lined up for the free surgery.

Just as I was about to give up altogether, the medics changed their approach from calling out names according to the lists compiled by Lacor hospital to calling patients with a particular needs. I was relieved. I knew through this approach I would get the attention of the medics.

“Those who have come to consult the urologist should line up here”

I got up quickly, picked my bag and medical forms and hurried to the line of patients called. I was sixth in the line.

It was at around 4.30 o’clock local time (01.30 GMT) when my time to consult the urologist came.

I handed him my medical forms quietly and after looking through, he told me to report back to the ward for surgery to correct my prostate on Tuesday, September 12, 2017 at 11.15 local time.

He then handed me over to another volunteer medic who then wrote my name down on a form she was holding, put some two hand bands on my left hand, one of which is written the name of the urologist, Dr. Brandon Pomeroy, who was scheduled to operate on me on Tuesday. The other hand band is written the time when I was supposed to be taken to the theater. I was then directed to another table, this time manned by staffs of Lacor hospital.

I filled consent form and signed it on this table and their instructions to me were very clear:

“You should not eat or drink anything from midnight of Monday, September 11, 2017 until after the operation on Tuesday. You should report here with an attendant one hour before we take you to the theater”, instructs a student nurse.

I didn’t know how I would follow the instructions on ‘not drinking anything’ since I usually drink a lot of water on hourly basis.

My imagination for Tuesday was that I would be operated upon and would be able to get back home on the same day. I was wrong.

I reported to that desk thirty minutes to 11.00 am with my son Jesse, as my attendant, but had to wait in the queue as patients after patients were being called to go to the theater up to 6.00 pm before I was finally called to the theater.

I was desperately thirsty and wanted very much to hurry things up so I could drink some water.

When my time finally came, I was led by a male student nurse into a room where I was stripped of my clothes and I was given a hospital dress instead. I was then led into the theater.

I found the urologist still working on another patient as two volunteer nurses from America looked on quietly. Two other local theater staffs stood near a trolley containing medicines and other equipments. Their mouths were covered with gloves.

I was offered a chair to sit, some biscuits and water to drink before being subjected to a series of interviews to find out if I was really ready for the operation.

They put a line on my left harm through which they put some liquid which was in a bottle.

“We shall send you to sleep before the operation but we shall meet when you wake up”, as all I could remember one of the nurses telling me. I woke up one hour later feeling as if I would like to urinate.

“You urinate. We have put a catheter to assist you urinate” was all I could remember of the theater. I realized I was on drip. The doctors had not cut me anywhere on my body.

I was then transferred from the theater into the ward where I spent the night for monitoring until two days later when I finally was discharged.

They removed the drip and catheter the following day but I was requested to drink a lot of water

 

UGANDA: DEPUTY CHIEF JUSTICE SEES VALUE IN ACHOLI TRADITIONAL JUSTICE SYSTEMS

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Uganda Deputy Chief Justice, Alfose Owiny-Dollo, on Acholi Traditional Justice Systems

“I see value in our traditional justice systems”

“’Cairo’ is actually the name the Lwos gave to ‘River Nile’. The Lwos called the Nile ‘Kiro’. Their home was the Nile Delta”

“When they came to ‘Khartoum’, they found another branch of the Nile. It was here that they fought a bitter war with another migrating group, the ‘Hermits’. They named that place ‘Ka-tum’, which is a Lwo phrase meaning ‘this is where we shall all die’”

AMURU-UGANDA: The newly appointed Deputy Chief Justice of Uganda, Justice Alfonse Owiny-Dollo Chigamoi, has stated that he sees value in traditional justice systems of the Acholi tribe which should be promoted to supplement formal courts.

“I see value in our traditional justice systems”, says Justice Owiny-Dollo.

He made this comment recently during the sixth anniversary of the coronation of Rwot Richard Santo Apire as the Cultural King of Attiak Kingdom, one of the 54 kingdoms of the Acholi tribe.

Justice Owiny-Dollo says the Juba Peace Talks between the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) rebels and Uganda government from 2006 to 2008 presented an opportunity for Uganda to set up the first court in Africa to try International Crimes, something equivalent to a center for International Criminal Court (ICC), but it missed that opportunity.

He was also instrumental in pushing for Transitional Justice law in Uganda during the Juba Peace Talks to try the numerous land related cases before formal courts.

“We recommended the establishment of a transitional justice court system in Uganda. Land conflicts need not go to formal courts”.

According to the former chairman of Acholi Parliamentary Group, Mr. Reagan Okumu, his group sponsored the Transitional justice bill in parliament in 2015 which should have addressed the issue of accountability and reparation for the Lord’s Resistance Army war.

Unfortunately, this bill has been shelved in parliament.

Acholi justice system emphasizes compensation to victims of wrongs, reconciliation between warring parties and harmonious living in society as opposed to the Western Justice system which emphasizes accountability without impunity.

Their ritual of “Mato Oput” (drinking of the Oput shrub) is known internationally as one of the best method of solving complex murder cases.

“The colonial masters found that the Acholi tribe had no prison facilities because our elders knew how to solve conflicts”, says Justice Owiny-Dollo.

Acholi tribe, one of the Lwo ethnic groups, currently occupies part of northern Uganda and South Sudan. They speak similar language with other Lwo/Luo ethnic groups in Uganda, South Sudan, Kenya, Ethiopia and Tanzania.

Acholi is also the origin of many traditional institutions in Uganda.

Justice Owiny-Dollo, who has studied the history of migration of the Lwo ethnic group extensively, says the Pharaohs, who were rulers in Egypt during the first civilization, were actually Lwo.

“’Cairo’ is actually the name the Lwos gave to ‘River Nile’. The Lwos called the Nile ‘Kiro’. Their home was the Nile Delta”, asserts Justice Owiny-Dollo.

According to Justice Owiny-Dollo, the Lwos started to trace the source of river Nile by migrating southwards up to its source at Kira in Jinja in eastern Ugandas.

“When they came to ‘Khartoum’, they found another branch of the Nile. It was here that they fought a bitter war with another migrating group, the ‘Hermits’. They named that place ‘Ka-tum’, which is a Lwo phrase meaning ‘this is where we shall all die’”, says Justice Owiny-Dollo.

He says when the Lwo reached the source of the Nile, they gave it the same name ‘Kiro’ which they gave in the Egyptian city, ‘Cairo’, which was corrupted from the word ‘Kiro’; and in Jinja the word ‘Kira’ is actually corrupted from the word ‘Kiro’, the name the Lwo gave to the Nile right from the Delta.

 

 

UGANDA: “NO LEADERSHIP CRISIS”, MUSEVENI IS “ABLE AND CAPABLE”-PRIME MINISTER

 

Dr.Rugunda

Uganda Prime Minister, Dr. Ruhakana-Rugunda (in red tie and glasses) being shown around Attiak Kingdomm cultural site.

“Uganda is not in leadership crisis. Instead, it is making steady progress because all institutions like parliament, judiciary and the executive are working well. The country is moving on the right course”

“President Museveni is still able and capable of leading Uganda. There is no dispute about that. He is a reference point in neighboring Burundi and South Sudan conflicts”,

AMURU-UGANDA: The Prime Minister of Uganda, Dr. Ruhakana-Rugunda, has denied claims by a section of opposition politicians that there is leadership crisis in Uganda, saying the country is moving on the right course.

“Uganda is not in leadership crisis. Instead, it is making steady progress because all institutions like parliament, judiciary and the executive are working well. The country is moving on the right course”, Dr. Rugunda said.

The Prime Minister made the remarks on Sunday, September 3, 2017 from Attiak sub-county in Amuru district in Northern Uganda during the celebration to mark six years since the enthronement of Rwot Richard Santo Apire of Attiak cultural kingdom. He was the chief guest during the celebration.

Rwot Apire was enthroned as the 21st King of Attiak cultural institution on September 3, 2011. This kingdom is one of the 54 recognized cultural institutions in Acholi sub-region; which operate under the leadership of Lawii Rwodi, Rwot David Onen-Acana II.

Dr. Rugunda says that Ugandans elected and endorsed the leadership of President Museveni for the next five years and there is no dispute about his ability and capability.

“President Museveni is still able and capable of leading Uganda. There is no dispute about that. He is a reference point in neighboring Burundi and South Sudan conflicts”, Dr. Rugunda said.

He appealed to Ugandans to support the leadership of President Yoweri Museveni because he is a tested leader as evident by his track records.

Dr. Rugunda was forced to make this comment following earlier remarks by Kilak North Member of Parliament, Mr. Anthony Akol, who said that Dr. Rugunda was “fit to be the President of Uganda” instead of President Yoweri Museveni.

He hailed the people of Acholi for supporting and sustaining their cultural institutions which demonstrate the value the people put in cultural their institutions.

“I salute Rwot Apire for organizing Attiak Kingdom in an impressive manner. This is a magnet to attract more people and friends to support Attiak. It demonstrates the value the people put in Acholi cultural institutions”, Dr. Rugunda said.

Acholi is the origin of many traditional institutions like Bunyoro, Toro and Buganda in Uganda.

Dr. Rugunda saluted the cultural, religious and political leaders of Acholi for supporting the peace process in Uganda which made it possible to expose the fallacy which was being paddled around that government was not interested in resolving the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) rebellion.

He challenged the people to consolidate and maintain the peace by utilizing the fertile land to grow crops, not only for consumption, but for export trade by adding value to what they produce.

“Let poverty be a thing of the past. You should use the fertile land and produce crops to attract value addition for export trade. The region should not produce only raw materials”, the Prime Minister said.

Traditional cultural institutions were abolished by former President Dr. Milton Obote in the 1967 Constitution but restored through Article 246 of the 1995 new Uganda Constitution.

Section 3(e) and (f) of Article 246 states that “a person shall not, while remaining a traditional leader, join or participate in partisan politics” and “shall not exercise any administrative, legislative and executive powers of Government or local government”.

According to Rwot Apire, Attiak cultural institution has developed a ten-year development master plan which focuses on education, health, environmental protection and agri-business, among others. The institution has support from an American Non-governmental organization-Alliance for Africa Assistance and Rotary Club of Gulu.

The Prime minister laid the foundation stone for the construction of Teresa Ayiko International Hospital and commissioned an office block of the kingdom.

Acholi Paramount King, Rwot David Onen-Acana II, appealed for funding for cultural institutions from government in order for them to resolve conflicts related to land.

UGANDA: WHO CAN SAVE “TRUE OWNERS” OF AMURU LAND FROM “NEW UNSCRUPULOUS LAND OWNERS”?

 

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Locals of Lakang village, Amuru district sit under a tree waiting to be addressed by Acholi Paramount King, Rwot David Onen-Acana II

“What is happening in Amuru should not be happening in the 21st Century. It is worst than what happened during Dictator Idi Amin’s regime. I know they can use force now, but if regime changes, we shall claim back our land”

“There must be a fresh process of validation, verification and audit of all the people registered as land owners in Lakang village in Amuru district in order to weed out new unscrupulous land owners who have moved in the village to grab land from people who don’t want to give their land for the sugar cane plantation”

AMURU-UGANDA: A group of locals were already seated on the grass under a tree in the community Payot Primary School compound, Lakang village in Amuru district by the time the convoy of Acholi paramount King, Rwot David Onen-Acana II, arrived at about 3.00 pm local time (01.00 GMT) . This was on Wednesday, August 23, 2017.

This village was a no go area for local leaders two weeks ago as police force, led by no less than a police commissioner, had cordoned off the place as a group of government surveyors were busy surveying  land of those locals who were willing to offer their land for a sugar cane plantation.

Inside a large tent erected by the Uganda police personnel on the bushy school compound, a group of people had lined up waiting to register their land to be included among those willing to offer their land for a sugar cane plantation wanted by government on behalf of Madvhani group of Companies.

On the convoy of the Paramount King, were two members of parliament from Acholi sub-region, Mr. Samuel Odonga-Otto and Mr. Gilbert Olanya; and Mr. Michael Lakony, Amuru district chairman.

Others included two religious leaders, retired Anglican bishop Macleod Baker Ochola II and Vicar General of Gulu Catholic Archdiocese, Msgr. Mathew Odong.

Amuru has been on the spotlight lately for two un-related land conflicts of Apaa and Lakang.

The first case involves a 40 square kilometer land boundary dispute between neighboring Adjumani district and Amuru at Apaa village in Amuru North constituency which has claimed thirteen lives so far since 2006, but its resolution is not in sight.

The second conflict involves 10,000 hectares of land wanted by Madvhani Group of Companies for sugar cane plantation in Lakang village in Amuru South constituency. The requested was contested in courts of law and has since drawn a lot of resistance from local leaders.

This is a rich fertile land which is heavily populated by locals who rushed to acquire land there in 2006 after the resolution of the Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) rebellion.

There have emerged two types of land owners here; the first group is those willing to offer their land for Madvhani to grow sugar cane and the second group is those who do not want to lease their land. But the question still stand, how can the surveyors succeed in surveying 10,000 hectares block of land belonging to the willing people without affecting those unwilling who are freely mixed up in between?

Since the minister of Lands, Ms. Betty Amongi-Akena, announced more than a month ago, that government will use force to survey this land, many National Resistance Movement operatives and crime preventers were ferried into Lakang village. They intimidate those who are not willing to offer their land.

This group of locals are now so scared that some of them have been compromised while others lost part of their land to the crime preventers and operatives.  People fear that the NRM operatives who are roaming the areas claiming to be rightful land owners yet they were not members of the community.

“Why must police mount road block to stop us, leaders, from visiting our electorates if government is doing a clean job?” Says Ochira David, the Local Council III chairman of Amuru sub-county

“There must be a fresh process of validation, verification and audit of all the people registered as land owners in Lakang village in Amuru district in order to weed out new unscrupulous land owners who have moved in the village to grab land from people who don’t want to give their land for the sugar cane plantation”, says Prime Minister of Acholi chiefdom, Mr. Ambrose Olaa.

“What is happening in Amuru should not be happening in the 21st Century. It is worst than what happened during Dictator Idi Amin’s regime. I know they can use force now, but if regime changes, we shall claim back our land”, says Mr. Lakony.

Msgr. Odong condemns deaths being caused by land conflicts in Acholi sub-region in general and appeals to Acholi community to rally behind Acholi paramount King in order to solve their grievances against government.

Bishop Ochola reminded the people of their constitutional duty to change bad governments through the ballot.

“Land matter is a matter of life and death. Acholi land has sucked a lot of innocent blood of the people. There is no public or free land in Acholi”, says Acholi Paramount King, Rwot Onen-Acana II.

 

UGANDA: CATHOLIC ARCHBISHOP DR.ODAMA BLASTS ADVOCATES OF FEMALE PRIESTS

 

Bishop John Baptist Odama (1)

Archbishop Dr. John Baptist Odama on the topic female priests in the Catholic Church

“The Catholic church gets priests from men. There should be no more debate over the subject of female aspiring to be priests also. Jesus Christ was a man. If Christ wanted female priests, he would have ordained his mother, Mary, first, but he did not do that.”

 “I am becoming increasingly convinced that the inequality of women becoming priests is becoming a major issue and a major challenge facing the Catholic Church.”

AMURU-UGANDA: The Archbishop of the Catholic Archdiocese of Gulu, Dr. John Baptist Odama, has castigated advocates for female priests in the catholic faith saying there should be no more debate on the subject because it is causing tension in the church.

“The Catholic church gets priests from men. There should be no more debate over the subject of female aspiring to be priests also. Jesus Christ was a man. If Christ wanted female priests, he would have ordained his mother, Mary, first but he did not do that” says Archbishop Dr.Odama.

Archbishop Dr. Odama made this remarks on Saturday, September 19, 2017 from Pabbo Catholic Parish in Amuru district, northern Uganda, during the priestly ordination of Reverend Father Simon Ongwech.

Archbishop Dr. Odama, who is a conservative, has always opposed priests marrying wives and women ordained priests.

“I have a lot of quarrel with this call for female priests. It is bringing a lot of tension in the church”

According to the Daily Beast, an online publication, a group of devout Catholic women marched near St. Peter’s Square in the Vatican in June 2017 with a big pink cardboard telephone booth marked “Door to Dialogue” trying to draw attention to the taboo topic of female priests. The group included the 40-year-old US-based Women’s Ordination Conference and the 20-year-old Women’s Ordination Worldwide.

They also hung 100 giant posters of women priests, including that of 70 self ordained priests in an attempt to highlight what many see as a blatant misogyny within the catholic hierarchy. All these female priests who broke the Vatican Law have been excommunicated.

“I am becoming increasingly convinced that the inequality of women becoming priests is becoming a major issue and a major challenge facing the Catholic Church”, says Father Tony Flannery, a male Irish priest who supports female priests, to The National Catholic Reporter newspaper, adding “unless this is addressed, the church will continue to become more sidelined and little more than a sect”.

The fact that this group of women secured permit to demonstrate in Rome can be described as a “miracle” since this is a city that normally sides with the Holy See. This is also the first time that these groups of women were allowed near the Vatican.

In May 2017, Pope Francis told a group of 900 nuns that he would create a commission to study the concept of ordaining women deacons.

“Opening a commission to study the diaconate for women would be a great step for the Vatican in recognizing its own history. This is something to celebrate”, says McElwee, one of the women marchers.

Archbishop Dr. Odama thanked the parents of the new priest, Mr. Tobia and Mrs. Joska Oyoo, for accepting that their son should be ordained priest which is against Acholi tradition which insists that their children must raise families.

He appealed to the new priest to be obedient to his superiors and to preach the Word of God to all in whatever place he would go to. Father Simon Obngwech was posted to Patongo Catholic parish in Agago district.

Archbishop Dr. Odama says the major challenge the church is facing today is having few priests yet the number of people who want their service is huge. He appealed to parents to send more children to join the seminary for boys and convent for girls in order to join the church ministry.