Long-time serving presidential press secretary Tamale Mirundi has been dropped and reassigned to become a presidential adviser on media.
Mirundi will be replaced by his long-time deputy Lindah Nabusayi. Mirundi confirmed the developments and claimed to be 'happy' with his new deployment which he says will give him more time to focus on ‘issues'.
Mirundi was Museveni's longest serving spokesperson (12 years) and is not shy to stir up controversy against anyone anywhere. He made a name for himself by taking pride in ridiculing those who challenged the presidency.
He often referred to himself as “Museveni’s barking dog" that attacks anyone considered a ‘threat’ to its master.
These included; former vice president, Gilbert Bukenya, former prime minister Amama Mbabazi, Kabaka Ronald Mutebi and his premier Charles Peter Mayiga, minister for presidency Frank Tumwebaze, Kampala Capital City Authority (KCCA) executive director Jennifer Musisi, Kampala mayor Erias Lukwago, former FDC party president Kizza Besigye, Newvision boss, Robert Kabushenga and many others.
At the peak of his career, Mirundi claimed he couldn't be sacked because "you are better off to have Mirundi within than on the outside." Mirundi's axing seems to be part of Museveni's overhaul of his public relations and communications team with more social media and tech-savvy one.
As we earlier reported in Museveni shops for journalists, the president is determined to match Amama Mbabazi's online public relations conquests and campaigns with recruitment of a new team of his own.
At the beginning of July, the president directed State House Comptroller Lucy Nakyobe to work on the modalities of retiring the press unit personnel and recruit a fresh team. The president was not happy that his media team has not dominated social media and online spheres like Mbabazi's team.
Mirundi, while serving under the president authored four books. Some of the titles are Who keeps the president in power (2009) and From crown prince to commoner (2013). In these books, Mirundi gives snippets of power struggles that occur around president Museveni. One of the books even details the rise and fall of former vice Ppesident Gilbert Bukenya.
In one of his latest outbursts, Mirundi said senior presidential advisor on defense and security Brig Nalweyiso and private secretary Edith Nakalema 'conned' the president of Shs 4bn for social media services during next year's general elections.
He says when he refused to be part of the 'thieving scheme', the duo reported him to the president that he abused the First Lady, Janet Museveni on radio show and that the president "was very annoyed".
He said, it is because of opposing such schemes that he was wanted of State House. In fact, he had promised to resign from State House immediately after next year's March elections.
He joins the long list of over 100 advisers of the president. Mirundi's contract expired two years ago and had not been renewed since.