On July 3, 2017, the Muganda man with probably the longest combined political and business careers in history, John Ssebaana Kizito, passed away at the age of 83. His US based son Joseph Kizito and daughter Ruth Kizito were at his bedside when he took his last breath. His wife and other children were reportedly on their way from overseas.
Ssebaana started his Ugandan political career in 1967 as a member of the East African Legislative Council. And over the next 48 years, up to 2015, he actively served an elected official or political appointee under virtually every Ugandan dictatorship government. He served as minister, MP, political party leader, Uganda presidential candidate or a political appointee to head Uganda government corporations or other institutions. While in each of the political positions, Ssebaana would also start and run different businesses.
A Muganda born into Mamba Clan, Ssebaana got involved in various Buganda Kingdom initiatives on a part-time basis or as a lender or financial investor, most notably as Chairman of the Muteesa I Royal University. Indeed, he was instrumental in the creation Muteesa I Royal University. He also served as a member of the Buganda Lukiiko.
According to Uganda court records and local press reports, there are several people who accuse Ssebaana of using his political positions, especially as Uganda a government minister, chairman of National Insurance Corporation and Mayor of Kampala, to improperly grab other people’s properties in and around Kampala. To the very end of his life, Ssebaana Kizito has been engaged in publicised court battles involving disputed properties.
The late John Ssebaana Kizito attended King’s College Budo, Makerere University and the University of Oregon in Eugene, Oregon, USA. On Friday, July 7, 2017 Ssebaana will be laid to rest at his ancestral home in Kalule, Ggobolola (sub-county) of Nyimbwa, Bulemeezi County.