KAMPALA — Presidential advisor on ghetto related issues Mark Bugembe, popularly known as Buchaman yesterday surrendered a number of military attire that he said he had in his possession illegally.
Buchaman who was in the company of his wife, children and self-proclaimed ghetto members handed over the attire to the Kampala South Police Commander, James Ruhweza in Makindye on Tuesday morning at his home in Makindye.
In the press briefing, the ‘Lwaki Temumatila’ singer instructed his ghetto commanders one by one to undress and handover the army uniforms they were donned in which they did willingly as they chanted and heaped praises on their leader
His action comes a day after the Uganda Police confiscated NUP uniforms saying they were army attires.
“We are following the directive to hand over all the military attires that we had. I have been on a mission to collect all military attires from my ghetto people. I want to send my voice and appeal to all ghetto members throughout the country that we have only one army, called the UPDF,”Buchaman said.
He also issued a 14-day ultimatum to anyone with military and any security attires to hand them over or face the wrath of the law.
“This is a directive that gets all military attires and takes them to any nearby police station. Even those calling themselves ghetto presidents, you need to heed to this directive,” he warned.
Kampala Metropolitan South Police commander, James Ruhweza applauded Buchaman and his ghetto group for leading by example.
“Today we have received related items like caps, shoes, uniforms, and belts. They have been handed over by Buchaman and we appreciate his gesture. He has also promised to continue bringing more,” Ruhweza said.
The development comes on the backdrop of a warning security that operations to crack down on civilians donning military attire will go on.
“We shall continue with operations on illegal use of armed forces uniforms. They (operations) will be targeting illegal manufacture, supply and distribution and selling of the armed uniforms across the country including berets, pips, ranger boots and heavy jackets,”Enanga said recently.
However, a number of people have since said that the recent security raid in various parts of the city was only meant to curtail the National Unity Platform and their red attire including berets and overalls that had become popular especially among the youths.
The National Unity Platform on Tuesday said they will not stop wearing their red attires including berets.
“When you read the UPDF Act, it talks about the badge which is referred to as the insignia. The badge is what matters and if these berets had a police or UPDF insignia, then you cannot wear it. These berets have a People Power badge and they belong to us. I challenge them to wear them (berets) if they claim to own them,” Joel Ssenyonyi, the NUP spokesperson said.
Buchaman’s gesture of handing over the military attire in his possession has been seen by many as one meant to attract sympathy from members of the public following a recent incident in which he was condemned for assaulting fellow singer Rocky Giant.
The move is also seen by another section of the public as one meant to “disarm” his nemesis Robert Kyagulanyi’s National Unity Platform whose members who have since vowed not to stop donning their red berets.
The handover ceremony was attended by over 100 ghetto people and they were seen chanting ghetto slogans throughout and promising to deal with whoever disobeys the order of bringing back the attire.