President Yoweri Museveni has dropped 38 ministers in the new cabinet that was announced on Tuesday evening.
Museveni appointed Katakwi Woman MP Jessica Alupo as Vice President replacing Edward Ssekandi and replaced Dr. Ruhakana Rugunda with Robinah Nabbanja as Prime Minister. Dr. Rugunda has since been appointed the new NRM Secretary General, replacing Kasule Lumumba who is now the Minister of General Duties.
Prior to this appointment, Nabbanja, Kakumiro Woman MP served as state minister for Health (General Duties) while Alupo served as minister for Education and Sports from 2011 to 2016 before losing her parliamentary seat, only to bounce back as an independent candidate in the 2021 general polls.
A deeper analysis of the new cabinet shows that Museveni dropped 13 cabinet ministers and 25 state ministers, who previously served in the 2016-2021 government. Among the dropped cabinet ministers include; Kyambadde Amelia Anne, Kutesa Sam Kahamba, Kamya Beti, Prof. Kamuntu Ephraim, Mwesige Adolf. Others are; Eng. Byabagambi John, Dr Tumwesigye Elioda, Karooro Okurut Mary, Mbayo Esther Mbulakubuza, Byaruhanga William and Gen. Tumwine Elly.
The state ministers who have been dropped are; Kamukama Molly Nawe, Rev. Fr. Lokodo Simon, Dr Kasirivu Baltazar Atwooki, Kizige Moses, Galabuzi Dennis Ssozi, Akiror Agnes, Kiiza Ernest, Karubanga David, Maganda Julius Wandera, Bagiire Aggrey, Mbalibulha Christopher Kibazanga, Nansubuga Rosemary Seninde, Eng. D’Ujanga Simon.
Others are; Opendi Sarah Achieng, Ajedra Gabriel Gadison Aridru, Kabatsi Joy, Kibuule Ronald, Musumba Isaac, Werikhe Michael Kafabusa, Namugwanya Benny, Dr Mateke Philemon, Kiwanda Godfrey, Nakiwala Florence Kiyingi, Mwesigwa Rukutana and Kanyike Sarah.
Subsequently, Museveni also named 12 members as new cabinet ministers and 28 new state ministers. Among the new ministers include; former speaker Rebecca Kadaga who has been named as 1st Deputy Prime Minister/Minister for East African Affairs, Lukia Nakadama (3rd Deputy Prime Minister and Minister without Port-folio), Jim Muheezi (Minister of Security), Kasule Lumumba (Minister of General Duties), NRM lawyer Kiryowa Kiwanuka (Attorney General), Francis Mwebesa (Minister of Trade), Jacob Oboth Oboth (State minister for Defence), Henry Musaasizi (State minister of finance-General Duties), Anifa Kawooya (State minister for Health-General Duties), FDC’s Joyce Ssebugwago (State minister for ICT) etc.
Currently, the new executive constitutes of 31 cabinet ministers and 50 state ministers with one cabinet position (Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs) remaining vacant. The position was initially held by Prof. Ephraim Kamuntu. The previous government had 31 cabinet ministers with the Vice President inclusive and 48 state ministers.
While addressing the NRM caucus on Monday, President Museveni hinted on maintaining the same cabinet ministers with one additional state minister (Minister of State for Elderly) which has been curved from the Ministry of Elderly and Disability.
In 2016, the position for Minister of State for Trade in charge of Industry fell vacant after the Parliamentary Appointments committee declined to approve the appointment of ex-officio Harriet Ntabazi for reasons that among others included non-registration as a national voter. Ntabazi has been renamed in the new cabinet list.
Gender-wise, the new cabinet has seen more women being empowered and elevated to ministerial positions as compared to previous cabinets. This new cabinet has a total of 35 ministers who are women as compared to 26 ministers in the 2011-2016 government. For emphasis, all the top three ministerial positions have been given to women that is; Vice President (Alupo), Prime Minister (Nabbanja) and 1st Deputy Prime Minister (Kadaga).
All the ministerial appointees will be vetted the Appointments Committee headed by Speaker Jacob Oulanyah next week. The new Vice President and Prime Minister will be approved by parliament through a simple majority vote on Thursday, according to the Clerk to Parliament.