April 2010
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Day April 13, 2010

DR Vincent Magombe Was a UPC member and in power from 1979


I was astonished to read that “UAH’s Dr Vincent Magombe says he ran away to exile from Uganda in 1980 after an Amin soldier had pointed a gun at him” as quoted by our resourceful Corporal Otto. I stand to be corrected but I think this is the same Magombe who was Deputy Head Prefect at St Mary’s College Kisubi in 1977.

I think it is the same Magombe whose father was a powerful Uganda People’s Congress Member of Parliament from Mbale, right from 1980 until 1985, when the UPC’s military wing (UNLA) overthrew Dr. Obote’s government.

I think this is the same Magombe who was one of the moving forces behind a play they named THE RISE & FALL OF IDI AMIN, which featured several times, if not exclusively, at former Norman Cinema. They acquired it in 1979 and there could be no question of Amin’s soldiers chasing Dr. Magombe away, except if he was in their guerilla camps in the Sudan.

Norman Cinema? I think it is the same Magombe and others who had forcibly taken over Norman Cinema and re-named it THE CENTRE. It was here and at other areas in Kampala that Dr. Obote’s heroic return was planned. Dr. Magombe might remember pseudonyms like Dr. Mulondo or Dr. Obel Maktim Olero

During Obote II, this CENTRE was also a base for covert intelligence-gathering missions and it is suspected that part of it was  a dungeon, where suspected ‘anti-government’ elements were ‘processed’.

It is allegedly from THE CENTRE that covert UPC operations at Makerere University were conducted by, among others, Peter Wangima and Kasajja Byakika Jr, who were both at campus then and whom Magombe must remember very well.

The Centre? The Centre, which is now Kampala Pentecostal Church had Mr. Francis Odida as part of management and he and Magombe must remember those days very well. Odida has retired from politics into philantrophy, but he was the proprietor of UGANDA REVIEW publications, which died shortly after Museveni came to power.

Dr. Vincent Magombe is a respected consultant on Africa and on Museveni’s Uganda in particular as hell on earth. I wish he could tell
the world a bit more about what Uganda was when his Uganda People’s Congres was in power.

Tony Owana

NRM supporter

Journalist with Sunrise Magazine

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