By Isaac Nuwagaba
Kampala Lord Mayor Erias Lukwago has trashed a letter allegedly written by Gen. Salim Saleh aka Caleb Akandwanaho circulating on social media, arguing that it is fake with intention to taint his political image in public.
In the letter, the chief co-ordinator of Operation Wealth Creation programme (OWC) allegedly expressed his disappointment in Lukwago, threatening to withdraw his political support.
Lukwago, who has been the City Lord Mayor since 2011, is alleged to have been receiving massive financial support from the military tycoon ,who was once the State Minister for Microfinance and a brother of President Gen. Yoweri Museveni.
The angry Akandwanaho is believed to have been supporting Lukwago who recently bought himself a brand new Toyota Land Cruiser valued at over sh800m excluding over sh2b he spent on procuring huge billboards that cost him a fortune during the 2021 general election.
Akandwanaho (the author), as revealed in the letter, revealed his unknown relationship with the opposition Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) leader, threatening to withdraw his ‘little known’ political support to the former Democratic Party member until he apologises in public.
When contacted to ascertain the credibility of the letter, Gen. Salim Saleh assured The Kampala Sun that the content in the letter is true and that he is the original author of the document.
“I am not happy with what Lukwago told the media at Nsambya Sharing Hall that some of the actions by the security forces (Uganda Police Force and UPDF) are my direct commands yet I retired from the army and he knows that…”
The State Minister for Kampala Capital City and Metropolitan Affairs, Kabuye Kyofatogabye, who delivered the purported letter to Lukwago disclosed that Lukwago has been working closely with Akandwanaho for a long time.
“I can confirm that Gen. Saleh authored the letter himself and invited me as a colleague to his home to pick it up. Akandwanaho has been involved in political and technical mediations at the Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) between Lukwago and warring technical staff factions at the Authority,” Kyofatogabye confirmed.
The Opposition wanted political capital in the new year and decided to drag in Salim Saleh who has for long been working for political harmonisation, unity, peace while giving chance to everyone irrespective of the political party affiliation, he added.
“Akandwanaho has been supporting Lukwago in handling KCCA technical issues with the political leaders connecting him to State House and President Yoweri Museveni. There was a bit of disappointment to the general. It is very regrettable to involve a General in such childish matters… childish acts,” Kyofatogabye added.
Akandwanaho who got pissed off by Lukwago’s revelation wrote in his letter;
“Dear brother Elias Lukwago Lord Mayor Kampala City, I am very offended about what you have said about me and the power that I am misusing,” Saleh stated in a letter addressed to Lukwago, citing Ephesians 2:12-18.
In his letter dated December 31, 2022, Saleh said he has withdrawn all the support he has been giving Lukwago in his political fights until he apologises.
“Otherwise like Archbishop Ssemogerere said, obulimba nobukyayi bwenkulabwenabwo – Uganda Yakusabira,” Saleh said. The Luganda words literally translates as deceit and hatred I have seen in you-Uganda needs prayers.
Lukwago’s harsh words to the five-star Military General came at Sharing Hall Nsambya on December 30, 2022 when United Forces of Change opposition politicians condemned brutality by the security forces for the foiled end-of-year prayers.
Speaking to our reporter on January 3, Lukwago labelled the information circulating on social media about him as false, adding that it is an attempt to destroy his credibility in public.
“That is not the handwriting of Gen. Saleh… That is a political witch-hunt against me, but I am used to such and it has not started today but has been going on ever since I became the Mayor of Kampala City, but they have been using different people.”