Reports of alleged kidnaps, torture, illegal detentions and disappearances are mostly false alarms but they are nevertheless embarrassment to the well-established track record of the NRM government and must be stamped out immediately. Every person arrested by security agencies must be accounted for in accordance with established procedures and laws of Uganda, offenders punished. Even cases of false alarm and mischief by people who go underground only to surface later must be dealt with.
By Ofwono Opondo
Robert Kyagulanyi a.k.a. Bobi Wine who entered parliament on a bye-election ticket in 2018 has been a gashing wind turned a violent storm that steamrolled the old opposition parties of DP, UPC, CP, Jeema, and belligerent Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) forcing the four time presidential contender Kizza Besigye off the road. NUP will now take the leader of opposition in parliament, and EALA slot from for the opposition, and most local governments in Buganda.
The general election results is slowly emerging showing the extent of the humbling, if not humiliating defeat of the boastful foursome of FDC party, Norbert Mao, and two retired UPDF Generals Gregg Mugisha Muntu and Henry Tumukunde Kakurugu. Muntu and Tumukunde are former President Yoweri Museveni’s surrogates seen by many in both the NRM historical lenses as having been rushed through the ranks with favours whose raw ambition made them diabolical turncoats.
The just concluded election was tough in many respects starting with the Covid-19 pandemic that has reshaped everyday life, and people accustomed to large political fanfare of crowd size couldn’t quickly adjust. The results, now getting behind us, and losers softly absorbing their loss, has given President Yoweri Museveni and NRM comfortable margins throughout the country although it also points to protest votes in Buganda and Busoga hitherto stronghold which the NRM must quickly deal with.
The sun is setting on election campaigns slated to end on Tuesday next week and Ugandans vote Thursday January 14 to choose a president, most certainly Yoweri Tibuhaburwa Kaguta Museveni and majority MPs from NRM going by all the credible opinion polls conducted so far. NRM already has fifteen MPs-elect declared unopposed by the Electoral Commission because opposition parties failed to field candidates against them.
The very difficult year 2020 dominated by the Covid-19 pandemic that greatly suppressed the local, global economy and everyday aspects of life is finally behind us. In Uganda we have so far registered fewer deaths although cases of infections are rising and worrying.
Calm down, a Bobi Wine presidency of Uganda is not going to happen anytime soon, and there is ample evidence readily available for those who care to analyse Uganda’s current political terrain. We have seen these charlatans and yellow dog-gangsters before who stoke fears with claims unsupported by any evidence but they eventually fade away, sometimes into oblivion.
Next to my office on Plot36 Nile Avenue is a door that has remained ajar, that of a hitherto friend of many years, and former Deputy Executive Director, Col. Shaban (Sebastian) Bantariza who died on October 27, 2020 from the Covid19 he apparently acquired during many of his official public engagements. At his military burial in Mitooma district mourners including his close family could only painfully watch his coffin being lowered into the grave from a safe distance of thirty meters away.
As election campaigns progress into the home stretch and facing defeat, the combined opposition, especially presidential candidates are increasingly getting desperate, heightening acrimonious political discourse laced with blatant lies, fabrications, malice, intimidation and unmitigated display of violent confrontations. They hope to succeed in their grand plan to discredit the electoral process if they can’t thwart President Yoweri Museveni’s win within the first round.
The just concluded presidential nominations passed off successfully with eleven candidates now slated to be on the 2021 ballot paper, except for the publicity stunt orchestrated by Patrick Oboi Amuriat (FDC), and Robert Kyagulanyi Sentamu of the National Unity Platform (NUP). It is worth noting that both belong to the defiance wing of opposition politics that does not believe change can come through the available democratic space.