KAMPALA — Kabaka Ronald Muwenda Mutebi, the king of the Baganda people, Uganda’s largest ethnic group has unspecified medical problem, a top official from his cabinet said, after the Kabaka made a first public appearance to celebrate his 66 birthday in more than eight months.
A top official in the Mengo establishment said on Tuesday that the Kabaka has been battling unspecified disease for over a year but gave no details.
Throughout 2020 and early 2021 there were multiple occasions when Kabaka Mutebi’s lack of public appearances led to speculation that he was close to death, or had already died.
Buganda Kingdom however kept mum about the swirling rumors and continued to act as if life in the Kingdom was proceeding as usual until subjects aimed a major dig at Prime Minister Charles Peter Mayiga.
Buganda Kingdom Prime Minister came out to dismiss the rumors, allaying any fears that the Kabaka was unwell.
“The Kabaka is taking a two months holiday contrary to reports that he is unwell,” he said.
He added that Kabaka [Ronald Muwenda Mutebi II,] after a busy schedule that saw him celebrate his 27th anniversary decided to take his annual two months to leave in Kenya’s Masai Mara.
Sources in the Kingdom who spoke to this website then said the Kabaka was being treated from Nairobi Hospital in Kenya.
President Museveni said the police would arrest those who had originated such an acidic rumour on social media.
“Why do you go to social media to announce the death of a person?” The President asked, adding that the police would trace such people “who will be dealt with”.
Now speculation about Kabaka’s health has mounted after he visibly looked ailing and unwell at his 66th birthday.
In a widely circulated video, the Kabaka looks like he is having a very issue with breathing.
“Looks gasping for air at some point,” a top official who watched the video said.
Buganda Kingdom is one of the most secretive establishments in the country and events inside the kingdom are often difficult or impossible to verify.