The pseudo democracy in Uganda of Museveni’s 35 years rule; will the country be stable after Bobi Wine’s win? – Obedgiu Samuel

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The pseudo democracy in Uganda that has kept Museveni in power for 35 year; will the country be stable without him as president?

Introduction

Recently, Ugandan civil society organizations warned about the likelihood of increasing political violence leading up to the country’s 2021 general elections.

Disturbing incidents of opposition figures like Bobi Wine being arrested and beaten, journalists being punished for covering those who challenge the state, and people associated with the new political opposition, like Michael Kalinda, being abducted, tortured, and even killed certainly support the case for sounding the alarm.

David Kilcullen argues that most future conflicts will occur in cities, thanks to the extraordinary growth in urban populations and the interconnectedness wrought by new technologies, which will create novel opportunities for crime and political violence. The ingredients for the kind of violence Kilcullen predicts are already in place, it’s a matter of time.

Analysis

There are three bottlenecks that have been a major “Set Back” to the struggle for Change in Uganda’s politics;- 1) Religious differences,  2) Tribal differences and 3) Political Parties.  Mr Museveni has been exploiting these to cling to power. This has cost the Country for 35 years.

“People Power” as a special purpose vehicle (SPV) for change, advocates for and promotes an agenda of Unity in diversity. We want people to get into the struggle as Ugandans regardless of whatever background or economic class they come from.

It’s unfortunate that in Uganda some individuals, in opposition political parties, are even paid money by Government to and dialogue with Mr Museveni. How can you go to dialogue with a dictator who comes with a pistol on the waste? He has never believed in civic engagement. There is no need to dialogue with military regime. That’s why we shouldn’t prioritize or trust parties at the moment because it will not be easy for them to overthrow the dictator.

A perfect illustration is Uganda People’s Congress leader Jimmy Akena. He sold Uganda People’s Congress to Museveni. Uganda House, property of the political party, is protected by the Uganda army UPDF. Mr Akena’s wife is Betty Amongi is currently a minister in this hybrid-dictatorial regime. Nonetheless, Mugisha Muntu’s Alliance for National Transformation, was defeated in the forum for democratic change primary elections and went on to form his own political party due to his dissatisfaction with the election results This is a weakness in Political party Administration, because if you care about the citizens of the Country, the best thing you can do after losing an election is to get back with your party and plan how you can build that Party.

To use this analogy, politics is like a company or a business where you need to find out who who your customers are first. In Uganda, we have Democratic party (DP), Alliance for National Transformation (ANT), Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) etc. They are all targeting and competing for the Citizens of Uganda and they want the population to think in their terms. Yet clearly if you ask them what their goals are as opposition running against Museveni’s National Resistance Movement (dictator regime), you will find a common answer that they want Mr Museveni out or end the military regime, which is the same message Hon. Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu alias Bobi Wine the People Power Principle has been championing, in other words “the main concerns are the same in either sides”.

Why can’t the people of Uganda come together under the umbrella of Unity in Diversity?. We have our differences but it shouldn’t weaken us. In real sense it should make us stronger, where we take the good parts in either organizations and bring in as we keep out the bad parts, on this principle we can run a government. If we don’t streamline these, the upcoming elections will actually be meaningless, independent candidates, opposition political parties, the ruling party (NRM) will waste alot of tax payer’s money. The best example is in the 2016 election where over 2.4 trillion Uganda Shillings were wasted by the Dictator on elections.

in case the contest of trying to liberate Uganda from the dictator Democratically fails, as Mr Museveni is always notorious and found of rigging elections to force himself into power for another five more years, the only and inevitable option that will be left is “An Uprising”, a revolutionary movement whose success will be determined by how much as possible it distances it’s self from political parties (plan A is democracy, plan B is an uprising) and this is where we have to brainstorm and think as Ugandans to help Make the Musevenism be a myth come 2021. Truth be told, most dictators have been brought down through civil uprisings and the best examples are Sudan, Mali etc, or military coups, but we don’t need a coup because it’s going to put Uganda into another problem, it’s like jumping from hot water and landing into fire. In his book, “Out of the Mountains: The Coming Age of the Urban Guerrilla,” David Kilcullen argues, and I agree, that most future conflicts will occur in cities, thanks to the extraordinary growth in urban populations and the interconnectedness wrought by new technologies, which will create novel opportunities for crime and political violence. Kilcullen brings his narrative to life by using contemporary examples, including the recent revolts in Libya and Syria and the 2008 terrorist attacks in Mumbai. The density of contemporary cities makes it easier for gangsters and warlords to assert control and renders civilian populations highly vulnerable. Security forces can address such threats, but as Kilcullen notes, a lack of popular support can make intensive search-and-destroy measures counterproductive. In Uganda, the ingredients for this point of view are already in place. It’s just a matter of time.

The appointment of  NRM cadres as  Residence District Commissioners in over 133 districts of Uganda, the DISUs, GISUs etc , all these are dictatorship schemes intended not only to take NRM upto the grassroot but also to form a spy or intelligence network mostly for the regime security and that means the first supporters of NRM would be the local government officials , even at ” gombolola headquarters.” This is a “Communist ” approach or style of administration where you make every citizens think it’s only one person (Museveni) who can lead the country and yet there are very many Ugandans who can do it better than him, just like many members of the NRM and some opportunists paid by Mr Museveni have been running from media to media like ” a he goat” on heat saying that Hon. Kyagulanyi Robert Ssentamu commonly known as Bobi Wine cannot lead Uganda, yet you find that he has all the qualifications and actually a graduate from the most prestigious institution in the Country. The people of Uganda are now saying “We want our country to be governed by someone we have democratically elected, not a group of thugs who went to the bush and walked over dead bodies to get into the State House, and now using the military to suppress citizens. To prove this, if I may ask, how many people are being killed daily on the streets of Kampala and other parts of the country by the police and LDUs, and yet nobody is conducting investigations to find out why the security personnel are doing it?. It’s the same Police who go and disperse, tear gas, shoot and kill the People Power supporters when they gather having their meetings. The solution to all these problems is “Unity in Diversity”.

By now, Ugandans must be in position to answer these questions; why has Museveni clung to power for over 34 years and what we do need now as a country. To make this work, we need to make priorities in order to bring the needed change because we can’t do everything at once.

All Mr Museveni is currently doing is to divert the attention of the people from the main issues. As you all remember in 2019, Mr Museveni moved across the entire Country from district to District in the name of spreading the message of “Wealth Creation”, simple question. “How many more Ugandans in the country side are wealthy now and who is talking about the Wealth Creation during this elections?” That was a failed agenda, nobody can even say to the innocent illiterate majority citizens that Mr Museveni has been deceiving them for over 34 years now. I know Mr Museveni has sold the country and it’s only a new government that can make Ugandans reclaim what rightfully belong to them.

Our biggest concern should now be about Mr. Kibalama’s confusion saying that NUP belongs to him and he will reclaim it, unless Bobi Wine clears him $ 5million.

Look, currently the Uganda’s economy is struggling and nobody is asking why Mr. Museveni sold Uganda Commercial Bank (UCB) and all it’s assets to his brother Salim Saleh. This Bank that Mr Museveni has given to his brother runs about 95% of the businesses in Uganda and that’s why Salim Saleh is filthy rich to the extent that he donated 60 billion Shillings to a group of religious leaders, because he owns the economy “the commerce” of this country as majority of Ugandans are daily going below the poverty line. Besides, when Mr Museveni took power, he nationalized over 142 major industries in Uganda, which were later either sold or given to army Officers eg Part of Uganda hotels like Sheraton, Masindi hotel, Chobe Safari lodge which works in conjunction with the National parks, Uganda Airlines, tea industries in Jinja, cooperatives, etc. In actual sense, NRM came and ran down the Uganda’s economy and weakened all the three institutions of governance (Parliament, Judiciary and Presidency), to the extent that the Uganda Police who were supposed to keep law and order are now following orders from above, soldiers who were supposed to provide security to the citizens are now instead killing the citizens for the Regime security.

Talking about the new cities and political Sub divisions created for example Gulu.  Gulu City became a city after the LRA insurgence that took over two decades in northern Uganda, because a lot of money was directly invested in the town by NGOs who come to rescue the situation then to avoid the corrupt government officials, and that brought growth to Gulu, that’s why the standard of living in Gulu City is above that of people living in Gulu and People are just trying to get adjusted to the level of the city.

In 2018, Mr Museveni’s foreign Minister Sam Kutessa, who happens to be his in law, was summoned to a New York court in the case of Patrick ho, as a witness (USA) over bribery, which is an impeachable action. It’s alleged that mr. museveni took a bribe from Patrick Ho.  But Ugandans can’t see this or even others who know do not even care. If the President of a country can take bribes, how can he run the economy or currency of the country that he has powers to print? Nobody is even talking about this, all they are doing is running around the country de-campaigning Hon Kyagulanyi Robert Ssentamu (Bobi Wine) that he is not fit to be President of Uganda and yet we have a President that accepts bribes and they still say he is the best.

Conclusion

Over the course of Museveni’s 35-year governing tenure, clientelism and intolerance for political challenges that resist co-option have become prominent features of the state. Realistic plans for the future have to grapple with the possibility that instability will grow, and that the end of 75-year-old President Museveni’s tenure, however it comes, will be a catalyst for violent competition as entrenched interests resist change.

It is not at all clear that the United States is prepared for the possibility of a Ugandan unraveling. As the largest troop contributing country to the African Union Mission in Somalia, or AMISOM, Uganda has been a critically important partner in combating al-Shabab and supporting the fragile government in Mogadishu. Uganda also currently hosts over a million refugees, more than any other African state. If Uganda is destabilized, the potential for contagion in an already volatile region is substantial, particularly for neighbors like South Sudan, Rwanda, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.