Muslims in Mbarara under the Uganda Muslim Supreme Council have refuted claims making rounds on social media that the cemetery land owned by Uganda Muslim Supreme Council has been sold.
In an April 23,2023, press statement signed by the chairman Uganda Muslim Supreme Council Mbarara district Hajji Rashid Mukasa, the Uganda Muslim Supreme Council leaders detail the background of the conflict among the Muslim faithful.
The statement notes that the former Muslim district leadership, under the late Sheikh Khamis Kadidi, disposed of the cemetery land without the approval of the Mbarara district Muslim District council.
They reportedly sold it to the neighbouring Petrol station (TUSU SHOPPERS) owner, one Sulaiman Tumusiime, for a giveaway price of ugx.400 million, resulting in their dismissal by the UMSC National management committee meeting chaired by the Mufti in 2016″ reads the statement.
According to the statement, three Muslim volunteers , including Hajji Issa Kakuule, a renown Muslim Tabliq leader, Hajji Hussein Nsamba and Muloodi Moses Gabula, challenged the legal transfer of the suit property into the purchaser’s name in Mbarara High They were later joined by the Mbarara UMSC chairperson and the secretary as part of the complaints.
The costly court processes dragged on for seven years until the trial judge advised the two parties to have an out-of-court settlement.The judge offered himself to mediate between the parties,and they agreed on a consent judgement based on the following terms;
TUSU petrol station owner,Mr.Sulaiman Tumusiime transferred the suit property back into the names of Uganda Muslim Supreme Council (UMSC) Mbarara district.
In the spirit of give and take and in consideration of the losses incurred on the side of TUSU owner,UMSC agreed to lease the suit property to him for a period of 40 years, provided that he erects a commercial shopping complex where business transactions don’t contravene Islamic values.
Sulaiman Tumusiime agreed to pay a premium of ugx192 million to UMSC for a period of 40 years.
Sulaiman Tumusiime is to construct a storied building as per the approved plans by Mbarara city authorities and shall be in possession of the property until the expiry of his sublease. He shall hand over the building to UMSC while in good condition.
Both parties agree to relocate the cemetery to another place provided by the sublease in charge of his three plots of land located at Rubeho in Isingiro district.
The district management was tasked to contact and negotiate with the families of the people buried in the cemetery to allow the exhumation of the remains for the purpose of transferring them to the new cemetery , following established laws.
“Unfortunately, during the exercise , which was done during daytime, unscrupulous people recorded the exercise and maliciously spread it through various social media platforms, falsely claiming that the cemetery had been disposed of by the Mufti of Uganda”reads the statement.
The Muslim leaders note that it was not there intention to disrespect the dead.
Speaking to this online publication,the Mbarara district khad sheikh Abdallah Mukwaya condemned the people using social media to abuse Mufti Shaban Mubaje and Uganda Muslim Supreme Council-UMSC leaders,alleging that they have sold UMSC cemetery land at mile 2 in Mbarara city.