MBALE – Former Democratic Party Member of Parliament in the legislative assembly is dead.
Mr Stephen Muduku Gidale [RIP] breathed his last in the morning Tuesday after developing breathing difficulties at a hospital in Mbale where he was undergoing treatment.
According to hospital and other sources close to him, the former legislator for North West Mbale, has been suffering from arthritis and gout for several years.
Like the African proverb says “When an old man dies, a library burns down; indeed a library in Bugisu/Masaba land has burnt down with the death of Hon Stephen Muduku Gidale.
Mr Nathan Nandala Mafabi, the Budadiri West Member of Parliament who doubles as the secretary General for FDC and Chairman BCU said “Hon Muduku is dead: May his soul Rest in Peace-We have lost a dictionary, a political dictionary.”
“He was my political mentor, a very disciplined politician who would disagree with people on principle, he stood for the farmers. He is the one who fought for Bugisu cooperative union monopoly to sell coffee that as BCU, we shall miss him,” Nandala said.
“He was a great critic in DP and stood out as a voice for farmers at that time especially those who worked in Bugisu Cooperative Union [BCU],” adds Nandala.
“I read about him and we knew him as our Member of Parliament in the 1960s, he was a witty man and very controversial,” is what Mr David Livingstone Wambi Kibale, also former MP [Budadiri East and LCV chairman for Sironko district] remembers of the late Mr Muduku Gidale, 91 (RIP).
Mr Muduku was the first Member of the legislative assembly in colonial Uganda who went ahead to become the first elected Democratic Party [DP] representative for North West Bugisu in Mbale district then after independence.
Mr Muduku [RIP], who joined Parliament at the age of 30 years, was selected to be part of the people who heading to the UK to negotiate Uganda’s independence.
Late Mr Muduku [RIP] therefore stands in history as one of the people, who negotiated for Uganda to have self-rule from the British colony in 1961.
A self-educated politician and a gifted speaker, researcher who travelled to London to negotiate for Uganda’s independence in 1961, he kept telling children who went to him about the history of Uganda, the country’s concealed past antiquities, Mr Muduku remained political to the time of his death
“On 9 October 1962, Uganda became a constitutional monarchy with Elizabeth 11 as the queen of Uganda. She was represented by a governor-general, who carried out duties on her behalf in Uganda, there is no independence for Uganda,” is what elder Mr James Namusoso remembers about him.
Mr Serapio Wakadala, also an elder in Zesui said Late Muduku would also add that during the independence celebrations, Queen Elizabeth was represented by Duke and duchess of Kent
“The Duke opened Uganda’s first parliament and gave the speech from the throne on the monarch’s behalf and in his speech at the formal opening of the National Assembly, the governor-general said that the Government of Uganda recognised Elizabeth as the head of commonwealth and as queen of independent Uganda,”
All elders agree that to him Uganda was not yet independent even when the Ugandan flag had been lifted high while the British flag brought down.
Born under a Banana plantation in Kisaali parish, Kisali village in Bugitimwa sub-county then Bumasifwa in Budadiri in Sironko district now in 1931, Late Muduku also partly lived in rural Kilayi parish under Bufumbo sub-county in Mbale district with reasons not yet known up to now.
Late Muduku said before his death that the only thing he remembers about his coming to the world is that it was a rainy season when circumcision ceremonies were going on.
According to Dr Kosea Wambaka, former NRM contestant for Budadiri West [Sironko] constituency Late Muduku died knowing very well that Uganda has not benefited much from its independence.
“Uganda is an artificial country containing within its borders, a very wide range of types of country from arid plains to lush lakeside areas, and a variety of tribes with different languages and customs, he occasionally remarked,” Dr Wambaka said.
“Although we negotiated well and got this independence with the Kabaka as the president and Prime minister at Late Milton Obote, Obote secretly conspired with a another group of people and overthrew Kabaka,”
“So moved very first to parliament, changed the constitution and declared Late Obote as the president of independent Uganda. But he also knew Dr Milton Obote, who were great allies with Kabaka became enemies.” he would tell people.
Elder Mr Stephen Namoma said Late Obote selected him [Late Muduku] to go Zanzibar as a government special representative but that when he came back and reached Entebbe, he learnt that Late Amin had overthrown the government.
“So he walked through Entebbe to Bweyogerere then Jinja, got a vehicle and came to Sironko and that when Amin’s soldiers came looking for him, he went to the forest at Mt Elgon and lived there until they gave up on him,” said Elder Namoma who has been close to him.
Under the NRM government late Muduku has received several medals as an appreciation for negotiating for the independence of the country.
He has been staying alone in a house built for him by his children in Budadiri Town council in Sironko district after his wife died in 2008.
Late Muduku passed on at the age of 91 years and will be buried close to his late wife in Budadiri town council in Sironko district.