Equality, justice and rule of law must prevail in Uganda

People who have followed my debates and publications consistently and impartially know that I am flexible within the confines of my principles. I believe all human beings are born free and equal in rights and dignity as specified in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

I believe in democracy and good governance. Democracy means people must decide freely who should govern them on the basis of promises made by the leaders. When leaders fail to deliver they should be recalled or rejected at the next elections.

Good governance means that public officials must act in a transparent manner, must include all citizens in decisions that affect their lives and must be held accountable for their commissions or omissions.

Nobody should escape accountability on account of resigning from government after they have participated in criminal activities. Therefore Musevenism designed to hold Museveni and his family alone for all wrongs in Uganda since 1981 and possibly earlier should be rejected forthwith. This is a matter of justice, not apologizing for Museveni and his family.

Since I joined Uganda politics, I have been driven by the same mission, same vision and same values.

1. The mission is to unseat NRM government by civil disobedience or non-violent dissent in the first instance. Please note that “in the first instance” means that if excessive force is applied against civil dissent, the people of Uganda reserves the right to invoke other means in self-defense.

2. The vision is to create a broad-based transitional government run by a presidential team/council; organize comprehensive population census to give us an idea about how many and who exactly we are after which we should organize a national convention so that Ugandans decide how they want to be governed.

3. The values I cherish include transparency, inclusiveness, compassion, liberty, justice, innovation, accountability, peace, security, prosperity and rule of law.

In July 2011, meeting in Los Angeles, USA, Ugandans from different parties and organizations at home and abroad formed United Democratic Ugandans (UDU). The Committee to run the affairs of UDU includes Mubiru Musoke as Chairperson; Eric Kashambuzi as Secretary General; Dorothy Lubowa as Director of gender and Fred Ssali as Director of youth.

The committee was instructed to prepare a National Recovery Plan (NRP). The draft that had been circulated a month in advance to allow time for adequate consultations was presented at a meeting in Boston, USA in October 2011 and was unanimously approved after a day’s debate.

The Committee on account of its excellent performance that went beyond expectations was mandated to continue to serve. To keep members and others fully and regularly informed we created a UDU blog www.udugandans.org.

UDU is an umbrella organization of opposition parties and organizations at home and abroad. We have been in constant touch with the leaders of FDC and UPC. DP members are actively engaged in UDU’s work although no formal arrangements have been made but we are constantly in touch with DP leadership. We are also working closely with UFA officials.

UDU has participated in meetings either in person or submitting statements. UDU was represented at the very successful London 2012 conference on federalism that was addressed as keynote speaker by Hon. Peter Mayiga, now the Katikiro of Buganda.

UDU has since championed a campaign for a federal system of government through publications and debates; presenting cases that have included Indonesia, Belgium, United Kingdom, Nigeria and Switzerland.

UDU has also facilitated harmonization of diplomatic networking to as much as possible speak the same language and through one voice. Results including decline in ODA to Uganda are there for all to see.

UDU’s analytical work on Uganda and Great Lakes region political economy issues and history has been well publicized including on Ugandans at Heart Forum, Face Book, twitter and www.udugandans.org. Dennis Nyondo whom we incorporated as publicity Secretary has done an excellent job in disseminating UDU work.

In November 2013 a meeting was held in The Hague, Netherlands. Participants from Uganda and in the Diaspora representing all regions and demographics attended the meeting in their personal capacity. The meeting was chaired by Mr. Kyeswa Ssebweze who remained chairperson and organized preparations for the meeting in June 2014. Dr. Henry Gombya is currently the chairperson and will work with focal points in Uganda and abroad until the next meeting scheduled to be held in New York at an appropriate time.

We decided to have flexible organizational arrangements with office holders serving a short time to avoid constraints of refusing to hand over power to others. The rotational arrangement we adopted offers an opportunity to test leadership qualities including especially character of members and determine who is capable of doing what that will make it easy to allocate posts in the post-NRM transitional government. Merit, not connections, will determine who does what.

The Hague Process (THP) has adopted a road map, a strategy and a methodology with 198 means that should be applied according to local circumstances to unseat NRM by peaceful means in the first instance. The methodology has begun to work already as one reported recently “we are working methodically”. Demonstrations are one of the 198 methods and will be applied when it is absolutely necessary.

The success of UDU and THP thanks to The London Evening Post and Black Star News that are publishing our work among others through whom we are mobilizing Ugandans at home and abroad like never before have triggered fear and reaction in the ruling NRM.

Upon the success of The Hague conference, David Sejusa and Amii Otunnu hurriedly formed Freedom and Unity Front (FUF) by a few hand-picked individuals in what was supposed to be a secret meeting – had Monique not attended the meeting and thrown out for asking the “wrong” questions, a development that reporters disclosed to the public – to counter THP.

FUF manifesto lacked in-depth analysis of Uganda, was drafted on ecumenical principles thus restricting mobilization largely to Christians; had no clear mission, vision and values (later it was admitted it was drawn up in a hurry and needed to be revised). It was designed like a plane taking off on a dirt runway without a landing plan.

The subsequent so-called situation analysis of Uganda coming a few months after FUF was formed gave a rather fuzzy history of Uganda, not a situation analysis confined to the defined period.

In these circumstances, it is not surprising that technical, political and administrative problems choked FUF to death within six months of its birth.

David Sejusa who declared the infant ‘death’ of FUF announced at the same time that he had instructed Amii Otunnu to create another organization. Within a fortnight FADDU/FUF was announced as successor to FUF, raising serious questions about FADDU: when it was formed, by whom, its location and office holders. The second question is how FADDU, legitimate or not can form a coalition with FUF that died and was buried in London? No answers have been given.

Faced with this problem, a new organization called Uganda in the Diaspora Europe (UDE) was hurriedly formed in Amsterdam, Netherlands and organized a meeting to challenge and hopefully overshadow The Hague Process. Invitations were selective leaving out UDU. A week before the meeting took place, it was discovered that the chairperson was a staunch supporter of NRM and was summarily dismissed. Dr. Kizza Besigye addressed the meeting perhaps without knowing UDE scandals and the implications of his visit. Face book has damaging information about other organizers of the conference. In these circumstances, one can safely conclude that UDE is already dead or terminally ill.

To counter what Eric Kashambuzi, secretary general of UDU and active participant in THP, is saying about these new organizations, the forces behind them and their failures, a body that was dormant called Wakeup Uganda sprang up to active life and began hurling dirt at the secretary general of UDU as you are reading on face book.

We have demanded to know when Wake up Uganda was formed, by whom, where it is located and the office bearers. Under pressure, Wake up Uganda has confessed it is a collection of four individuals: three males and one female who have declined to give their names and therefore continue to act illegitimately.

It is increasingly becoming a requirement that if you want to engage in public debate you must give your real full names, address and the organization you work for so that there is accountability for commissions or omissions.

It is perhaps these same individuals that are posing as FADDU and voice of radio Uganda members criticizing Kashambuzi because the message and style are more or less the same and without substance. And they do it in turns. When Wake up Uganda takes a break, radio voice of Uganda takes over. In all cases, no names are given.

One of them promised to give evidence that Kashambuzi is working for Museveni in return for some money and a job in his administration. I can’t wait to see the evidence.

NRM has taken a further step to damage the opposition in the Diaspora according to some stories. It has crippled the once credible, popular and vibrant radio munansi. The English program, the most popular and substantive with a wider reach in geography and diversity of listeners was abolished abruptly and unceremoniously without explaining to the anchor of the program before and after it was terminated. What has baffled them those who closed down the English program is that we have continued to reach our people through other media. There are stories that listeners are demanding restoration of the English program or to rebroadcast previous programs. This might require prior consent of the anchor of the program.

Out of frustration because of my resilience I was challenged to produce yet again my resume or CV – which I did – because some Ugandans felt that what I was saying about my record can’t be true.

Even with the resume out, Bobby Musoke has insisted that I have not produced proof of citizenship and therefore I am not a Ugandan and can’t play a leadership role. Some who have been impressed with my resume but don’t want to see me as leader of Uganda have concluded that I am too qualified to become president without defining the criteria for that office. Others have said that I prepared the resume wrongly and it can’t be accepted; yet others want a more detailed one. I have directed the latter to visit www.udugandans.org or www.kashambuzi for details. The good news is that the vast majority who responded were impressed.

Then there is Dezire Desire Mawa – who claims to come from Rwenzururu without realizing that we know the location of that place vis-a-vis DRC – has emerged out of nowhere and is discrediting his character in an attempt to pull me down.

Others have respectively used my short stature and seniority to disqualify me from Uganda leadership. They are now confused because I have given names of short and senior people that provided quality leadership to their citizens and the rest of the international community.

For easy reference, here are very successful short leaders that include James Madison, Deng Xiaoping of China, Shastri second prime minister of India, Louis XIV, Napoleon, Caesar and Kambona as foreign minister of Tanzania.

The very successful senior leaders that presided at a very difficult time include Deng Xiaoping; Rao of India; Mandela of South Africa; Reagan of USA and Adenauer of West Germany.

I want fellow Ugandans to know that:

1. I will continue as a matter of justice to champion the elimination of Musevenism from the political discourse as presently formulated to focus condemnation on Museveni and his family for all the wrongs in Uganda;

2. I will continue to advocate as a matter of conviction the use of non-violent means in the first instance to unseat NRM regime;

3. I will continue to campaign as a believer in diversity and inclusiveness for a broad-based post-NRM transitional government led by presidential team;

4. I will continue to fight for equality of opportunity for all Ugandans and inclusiveness of all Ugandans at home and abroad in Uganda’s political, economic and social processes. The voiceless and powerless Ugandans need a shoulder to lean on.

Thank you for reading this message to the end.

Eric Kashambuzi