BY MAYIMUNA NABAGEREKA
Lubwama Siraje was born on February 18, 1965, to the late Sadik Kisitu and Sauda Namuddu Kisitu. He joined the field of journalism in 1993. In 2002, Siraje attended a short investigation course at Missouri University, U.S.A., and majored in political, human rights and crime reporting. I don’t know if he is a member of UAH or not.Abbey Semuwemba should tell us!
He has been a journalist for 22 years and is the case study of why journalism doesnt pay off. He is now 50 years old but he is still an investigative journalist, and It is believed that without his job, he cannot survive on anything else. His case shows exposes the poverty among our journalists, and its the reason why some like Ahmed Katerega and Semujju Nganda, have opted to join politics.
Lubwama Siraje’s interest in journalism was first sparked at age 28 when he began working for The Shariat newsletter. Just three years later, he entered the Uganda Institute for Business and Journalism Institute to complete his diploma in journalism.
Consequently, he worked for several prominent publishers, including The Assalaam Newsletter, the Njuba Times, the Daily Monitor, and The Observer Tri-Weekly, securing positions along the way that elevated him from reporter to senior court reporter. His was at the Daily Monitor for 12 years.
His focus has been on politics, human rights and crime reporting – in particular, the war between the Democratic Republic of Congo in Bunia, Beni and Bardorite. He is also a regular talk-show host on various stations including the government-owned Star FM, Top Radio and Simba FM.
He was once arrested in the Democratic Republic of Congo and charged with writing that the late Jonas Savimbi was in Kampala, a case that the police did not allow him to pursue. In 2009, after the government denied Kabaka (Buganda King) Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II, he was charged with sedition for annoying the president. He was granted bail, and after some months, the case was dismissed after some of his fellow journalists led by Andrew Mwenda(now NRM) challenged the sedition law, and the Constitutional Court nullified this crime. Sedition was erased from the Penal Code Act.
on March 28, 2012, while covering the leader of the opposition Forum for Democratic Change (FDC), Sirajje was beaten by Kampala Metropolitan Traffic boss Lawrence Niwabwine, who later ordered his subordinates to arrest him. These junior police officers beat him, and stole one of his mobile phones and Shs 150,000. He has since filed a civil case against the police officer and the attorney general.
Last week, Sirajje took a selfie with Sarah Kagingo and the Lord Mayor Erias Lukwago, but he was shown to be hiding at the back, instead of being at the front, yet he is a senior to all the people in the picture. It’s a typical case of lack of confidence in a person. Unless some decides to become as corrupt as Andrew Mwenda did, you cannot make money in journalism. Most of the journalists in Uganda are now either in the pockets of Amama Mbabazi or Museveni alongside their little salaries. The truth has only been left to the social media groups but our newspapers and radios are all now unfortunately corrupt!