KAMPALA: The Minister for Internal Affairs, Gen Kahinda Otafiire, has said that it was him who helped Jacob Oulanyah when he had been abandoned by his people from Northern Uganda.
According to Otafiire, when Oulanyah lost the 2006 parliamentary election in Omoro, many people, including those in government, abandoned him yet he had helped the NRM win re-election since he was on the Kisanja committee.
“Oulanyah helped us during the process to amend the Constitution to lift term limits; after he was rejected by his people, he lost an election,” Otafiire said during a burial in Mitooma District at the weekend.
“It’s me who got him out of the cold, he could not even afford shoes, I put him on the local government finance commission and later on the UWA Board, that’s where he got some money that helped him to run and return Parliament,” he added.
Otafiire castigated those politicians who are now praising Oulanyah yet they did not help him during tough times.
“At one time, he fell sick, was admitted to Mulago and government failed to clear the bill, I got money out of my pocket and helped; but when he became speaker — everyone is singing Oulanyah is a good person, Oulanyah is a good person! When he needed your help, you weren’t there but when he becomes speaker, you are there singing!”
The later Speaker of parliament, Jacob Oulanyah, was laid to rest on Friday at his ancestral home in Omoro District.
Family, friends and workmates have eulogised him as a fighter, and an unrelenting character who lived life on the roll.