The highly-anticipated Busoga royal wedding hangs in balance following a latest court injunction threat.
Kyabazinga William Gabula Nadiope IV is expected to tie the knot with Ms Jovia Mutesi on November 18 at Christ’s Church, Bugembe in Jinja North City Division, and later host their guests to a reception at the monarchy’s Palace in Igenge.
The latest development is a letter addressed to the Archbishop of the Church of Uganda and Bishop of Busoga Diocese, signed by Mugerwa and Partners Advocates and Solicitors on behalf of Ms Alison Anna Nadiope who claims to be Kyabazinga’s wife.
“Our client is legally married to William Gabula, the Kyabazinga of Busoga Kingdom, having celebrated a civil marriage in December 2016 at Milldam House Bunbaby Road, Portsmouth PO13AF under marriage certificate AK5947291,’’ the letter dated November 8, 2023, reads in part.
The letter further states that the aforementioned marriage culminated with the couple siring two children.
The petition adds: “This serves to notify the Church of our client’s objection and request that the honourable Church of Uganda does not proceed to wed Mr William Kadhumbula Gabula the Kyabazinga of Busoga with Ms Jovia Mutesi during the subsistence of our client’s marriage as the same would amount to bigamy and contrary to church canons.”
The Secretary to the Bishop of Busoga Diocese, Ms Persis Faith Wakabi, acknowledged receipt of the letter, adding that she handed it over to the Busoga Bishop, Rt Rev Paul Samson Naimanhye.
However, the Diocesan Secretary, Rev Can Patrick Mutalwa, said he is yet to see the letter and referred this Publication to Bishop Naimanhye, who was attending the burial of former Minister, Dr David Kazungu in Kamuli.
The Rt Bishop asked this reporter to call him at 9pm on Friday; however, all calls to him went unanswered for the entire evening and most of Saturday morning.
Ms Alison first dragged the Kyabazinga to Court in the United Kingdom (UK) where the alleged civil marriage took place.
Through her lawyers from UK-based law firm, Anne Cuthbert Solicitors Limited, Ms Alison informed the Busoga Kingdom head of clans and clans that the two got married in December 2016, and since then, the Kyabazinga has not divorced her.
She contended that once he enters into another marriage, he will be committing bigamy which is punishable under the UK law, whose penalty carries imprisonment for up to six months.
Mr Andrew Ntange, the Busoga Kingdom Spokesperson, has urged subjects to ignore all the Court documents because “a traditional leader is not secured through Courts of law.”
He says: “Those letters can come as long as they want (but) we don’t care because there is an elaborate process where a Queen is processed and got. A king has no clan and the Queen is also clan less because she is a mother of all Basoga. Any woman using the Courts of law to be a Queen is shaming herself and her parents.”
Mr Ntange added that they can’t allow someone to destabilise the Kingdom, and that they shall remember her for that.
“Let us prepare for the wedding; it is a mere countdown,’’ he said.
Ms Justine Kasule Lumumba, the head of media and entertainment on the organising committee of the Kyabazinga wedding, last month said the monarch is duty bound to show his subjects a Queen and no one has powers to reject her, according to culture.