SHEEMA – Former Sheema Woman MP Rosemary Nyakikongoro has accused the incumbent, Ms. Jacklet Atuhaire, of attempting to use a women-project the former started to gain political capital.
Ms. Atuhaire is said to have called for a fundraising to construct a Shs300 million resource center for Sheema Women Development Forum (SWODEF), an organization of over 500 women that was formed in 2012 by the then woman MP Nyakikongoro to improve nutrition in households, promote savings and skills development.
In an interview on Monday, Ms Nyakikongoro said Ms Atuhaire has not right to begin fundraising for an event yet she, as the director, was not informed and neither did the women call for her support.
“We do not want any contributions from any member at this particular time as SWODEF. If we want contributions, we have our headed paper; we shall use that headed paper and write to the willing members who want to contribute but this impersonation, SWODEF women have refused it and we shall not go by that,” said Ms Nyakikongoro.
This website has seen some of the invitation letters bearing Ms. Atuhaire’s signature, telephone contacts, and email.
“On behalf of the people of Sheema, the woman Member of Parliament Sheema district invites you to the fundraising function of the construction of women’s resource center…This function will take place on 28 September 2018. We look forward to receiving you,” one of the letters dated August 22 reads in part.
SWODEF chairperson Sanyu Margret also said she is not aware of the fundraising. “We have not failed to build our resource center and so we have not started fundraising for the construction of our building,” said Ms Sanyu.
Ms. Sanyu said their organization, registered as a Community Based Organization, does not have any political, religious and cultural affiliations, and nobody should use its name to fundraise money without their knowledge.
Ms. Nyakikongoro lost to Ms Auhaire in NRM primary election. She again lost on the Independent ticket in 2016.
When contacted, Ms. Atuhaire did not confirm or deny authoring the fundraising invitation letter and only said “No comment” before hanging up.