Small money can make Luo people turn aganist their kin and kit


*A rebuttal to Ofwono Opondo on his disparaging remarks on the Person and Office of the Chief Justice of the Republic of Uganda*

A reflection by Robert Obita Adongakulu, Gulu City.

3.12.23, 11.00 p.m.

Government spokesperson Ofwono Opondo P’Odel, is  at it too : *referring to  the  Chief Justice Owiny Dollo, the country’s Chief Justice,  as a conflicted community leader leading a group of contradicting and unserious political leaders who condemn the Balaalo herdsmen during day time, to garner political capital, and conspire with them at night time when no one is watching*

*The first question would be who is Ofwono Opondo?  and what is he famed for?  To one’s mind comes an untoward experience at one of the high-end Supermarkets in Kampala and a gun incident involving an alleged thief at Kampala Parents School; both of which may have been only – tentatively – resolved leaving some kind of leash that require(d) State protection, to keep afloat*. *Such alleged skeletons in anyone’s closet often leaves the person biased and subjective*! *No wonder, then!*

*In saying that the anti-Balaalo noise being made during the day is meant to secure political support while duping the unsophisticated and gullible ordinary people into thinking that these leaders are fighting for them yet in actual sense, the truth is different is typical OO attempt at blackmail, or in his own words ” _trying to be clever by half…”_*; *even true regime apologists see through it.*

*Where as it is plausible that some of the alleged  ” _noise-makers are the ones inviting the Balaalo to the clan, community and family heads who control the land, often after receiving cash and support for self-gratification,”_* *need not mask the terrorist approach being adopted in trying to disenfranchise a community that was subjected to over two decades of war and has not been given the space and time to settle down before the assault began*

*O.O is out of order in describing the political actors from Acholi-land
( like Norbert Mao, Odonga Otto, Gilbert Olanya, Anthony Akol etc) as unserious and agents of economic backwardness both in Acholi and Uganda* *OO does not choose our leaders for us*

*Just in case he thinks that Acolia don’t know what they want, OO can be sure Acolis are very clear about what they Do NoT want; the Balaalo hegemony being one of them.* *The Might Is Right Doctrine may serve for now! But history, and time are on our side*. *History; because we have seen major empires come and go. And time; because we are moving forward, and not backwards*

*It is the height of blackmail and misrepresentation to turn Owiny-Dollo into a punching bag*. *For a start Owiny-Dollo was INVITED into the Balaalo saga his appointing authority; except, by the benefits of hindsight, it could have been a miscalculation, if the intention was to rubber-stamp and or push through an hegemonic agenda for the Modern-day Balaalos who are hands-in-gloves with the ruling oligarchs.*.

*Like I wrote elsewhere, Owiny-Dollo is astute, a culturalist, has the heart of a lion and yet has the kind of magmaninity that this country needs in its torturous political journey.*  *Before he became a Chief Justice, Owiny-Dollo was born to a community whose values propelled him to be who he is.*.*There  Acoli proverbs like ” _Okwateng en aye Loko ngeye ki polo..”_; ” _Odero rut aa ki i Ot_ ” _Coo ngut ka otoo_ “, ” _Oyoo opilo too ikum mere”_ that may speak to Owiny-Dollo, without him having to apologize for it.*. *Who does not listen to the voice of reason and of restraint that typifies Owiny-Dollo in this Balaalo saga?*

*That Opondo wonders ” _why Dollo & Co don’t say anything when wealthy foreigners or Ugandans from other tribes move into Acholi and acquire large tracts of land to participate in economic activities”_ implies Acolis are not against development*.*DELIGHT Uganda & Amatheon  in Nwoya; Atyak Sugar and others in Amuru; many farms, grainmills, and factories of confectionaries are on land rented, leased or bought by foreigners who walked in broad day light, negotiated transparently and followed due processes. And – naturally- we are not complaining. Rather we are in mutual co-existence with them*

*It is unfair that Dollo must be cherry-picked for having to prove that the Balaalos  have been illegally obtaining land without paying adequate compensation or being preceded with willing buyer-willing seller negotiations*.
*I am not a Lawyer but there are legal provisions that can prove the nullity of a transaction of the kind the Balaalo purportedly entered into; what in essence tantamounts to buying air.*

*OO is not best placed to yap the Balaalo apologists’ mantra of*:

” _Dollo had better respect the public office he holds and learn to keep quiet_
_while avoiding appearing to give his views on radio talk_ ”  *is singing from the same hymn book like Andrew Mwenda and Dan Kimosho, the other time; a chereography from the High Pedestal, to chop the head of the champion*

*In case as Chief Justice, any  land-related dispute one day ends  at his desk for arbitration, there is a legal provision call RECLUSION, if in his considered opinion, he truly feels conflicted. So there is no room for any legal crisis*.

*Opondo  need not wonder what will happen to litigants appearing before such a (conflicted) Chief Justice who has already publicly declared his stand on the Balaalo saga*!

*Judgments in Law are technical and objective notwithstanding the possibility of a Presiding Judge having an individual opinion on the subject matter* *Owiny-Dollo is NOT the 1st Chief Justice to have ruled over potentially conflicting cases but having delivered Justice to the satisfaction of the parties involved*

*Opondo needs to know that the country can prove that the transactions in contention can be PROVEN to have been short of  lawful and legitimate; both in substance as in form, and the burden of proof need not fall on Owiny-Dollo*

*NO ONE IN THE NORTH (ACOLI SUB REGION) IS AGAINST PURCHASING, ACQUIRING AND OWNING LAND, EXCEPT THROUGH SYSTEMATIC THUGGERY AKIN TO AN ORGANIZED CRIME! Acoli elites, like yours truly, fully understand the concept of  *free market economy under which movement of people, labor and capital isn’t only tolerated but is actually encouraged by government policy*. *”The Balaalo migration, as H.E. Y. K Museveni had ably presented in his May 23 Presidential Executive Order; but for the forces of the individual hands*.

*That today’s _Mulaalo_ is a modernised sophisticated well educated Ugandan elite with money and good connections to access resource-allocation and development projects-related information on good time before the same becomes public masks so many things which if not addressed in the spirit of patriotism may come back to haunt this country in a manner the Ofwono Opondos may not fathom*. *It may hold as long as the perpetrators still hold the levers of power. And there is no way this can be an eternity. This can be taken to the bank and cashed.*

*It is true Northerners have land and properties across the country; but these have not been acquired under the barrels of the rifles, with funds from the tax payers, the Central bank or proceeds from dubious military (mis) adventures on foreign soils or from the ill-fated Karimojong or Banyoro or Bagisu or Banyankoles of this country.*. *And that is why they could not have at the expense of millions being displaced under all manner of disguises, manipulation and blackmail*

*That  the so-called _Balaalos_ are actually proxies of big people in government and the epitome of an  expansionist economic interests of Ministers, Senior Generals and the Police Force and other  Security apparatrix is no longer a matter of conjecture, it is an established fact*

*Having said the above, we may throw our hands in the air, to Him who is the author and finisher of our Faith, for we aware the theatrics underway looks like goading  a fight by regime elements who are convinced this is the moment to strike when the nail is (still) hot*.

*The Scriptures I read quotes the Lord God saying ” _Your Ways Are Not My Ways; And My Thoughts Are Higher Than Your Thoughts.”_*

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