Museveni has become very unpopular at home (and he knows it witness the volume of envelopes packed with money his agents are handing out to buy votes and support he is seeking from Kenya leaders) and increasingly abroad (he has been reported in a credible magazine as one of the worst dictators in the world) not so much because of questions about his birth place – important as they are – but principally because of the inhuman and insensitive manner (primitive and bankrupt Ugandans, short men and ugly women etc) in which he has treated Ugandans since his guerrilla days (when he jailed in a very cold cave and threatened to shoot and kill a half naked Muhima man for asking Museveni about those guerrilla fighters in their midst that spoke a strange language) (EIR Special Report 1997).
If Museveni had treated Ugandans as he promised in his ten-point program and consolidated Uganda’s independence instead of adopting shock therapy structural adjustment program and handing the country over to Britain as a neo-colony respectively in return for Museveni protection as president, nobody would be discussing whether he was born in Rwanda or Tanzania or who his father and relatives are or where his ancestors are buried.
The meeting he convened and chaired (with a Protestant Bishop’s blessing) at his Rwakitura country residence with Bahororo leaders from Ntungamo and Rukungiri districts on March 15, 1992 to draw up a road map on the advancement of Bahororo people at the expense of other Ugandans – a road map that Museveni has implemented meticulously and continues to do – has reopened old wounds in southwest Uganda (Bahororo versus Bairu in Rujumbura for example) and opened fresh wounds in the rest of the country. Museveni should singularly be held accountable for the chaos, suffering and inequalities in Uganda right now and the potential for political explosion and subsequent serious economic and social outcomes. Those who think authoritarianism ensures stability are very mistaken as the events in Tunisia have amply demonstrated.
Compassion (which Museveni lacks) means sympathy for the distress or misfortune of others combined with a desire to extend a helping hand so that the distressed individual, household or community can remove the chains. Museveni as leader of Uganda has failed that test after twenty five years in power. Consequently he should not continue to lead the people of Uganda. Here are a few illustrations that justify his defeat on February 18, 2011.
First, in Uganda culture children come first. Parents, relatives and indeed the entire community do all they can in good and particularly in bad times to protect children from any insecurity, be it hunger or ill health etc. In extreme circumstances men even committee suicide when they failed to take care of the children and their mother(s).
Under Museveni’s brutal dictatorship children have come to mean virtually nothing except those who belong to his Bahororo tribe (who are eating well, have access to high quality health care facilities, are driven to excellent schools where lunch is served and get decent jobs when they are ready to work whether qualified or not). Many non-Bahororo children are born underweight because their mothers are under-nourished, suffer high infant mortality, under-five malnutrition and child mortality rates including in clinics and hospitals that have turned into hospices, confirming Museveni’s total lack of compassion. Mothers have cried before Museveni, medical professionals and the general public have appealed to Museveni to do something about the plight of Uganda children to no avail. His attitude towards Uganda children raises questions about Museveni – a man who has wonderful children and grandchildren but does not care at all about the children of others who do not belong to his tribe! This is a fact and has nothing to do with sectarianism which has been misused to cover up Museveni’s wrong doing.
NEPAD (New Partnership for Africa’s Development) adopted a decision that African governments should support school meal programs with the assistance of interested national and international parties. Delegation after delegation has met with Museveni on school lunches, articles have been written and discussions held on the vital importance of school meals in terms of keeping children at school and improving their performance especially of girls and building human capital indispensable in a knowledge-based world economy, but Museveni has turned a deaf ear.
There is indisputable evidence that school meals work in developed and developing countries. In Ruhiira’s Millennium Village program in Isingiro district (Uganda) where school meals are served there has been remarkable improvement in attendance and performance. Museveni’s rejection of school lunches can only be explained in terms of total lack of compassion – there is no other reason because he has enough money to fund primary school lunches in the whole of Uganda. A man or woman who has no compassion towards the welfare of children when there are means to do so is not fit to be a leader – anywhere in the world. Many African governments including Ghana that implemented structural adjustment like Uganda have been able to provide school lunches. So Museveni cannot hide behind World Bank and IMF conditionality to deny school lunch to Uganda’s primary school children many of whom come from families that cannot even afford one (proper) meal a day.
The world got a shock when Museveni announced recently at a campaign rally in western Uganda that he had no money for primary school meals but he has enough funds to cover funeral expenses. Two years earlier the United Nations General Assembly had met at the heads of state/government level to discuss the negative impact of rising food prices on consumers and what should be done to address the situation in an urgent manner. Museveni shocked the Assembly and the whole world (because his statement was circulated) on two counts. He announced that Uganda farmers were making so much money that rising food prices were welcome which was not the topic of the debate. He added that in Uganda everyone including wage earners in towns has a piece of land where he/she can grow food or there is a relative that grows food and as such food prices have not impacted adversely on consumers in Uganda. He thought he was posing as the leader who takes care of his people.
Museveni forgot that with improved communication technology people were watching images of starving Uganda children and women on the internet and on television screens (the situation was made worse by images of Ugandan hands and feet disfigured by jiggers). The world’s interest in Museveni increased when Uganda became a member of the UN Security Council and what has been learned has damaged rather than improved Museveni’s image, made worse by allegations that Uganda troops committed genocide against Hutu people in DRC and that Museveni is one of the worst dictators in the world. This image won’t go away and his leadership role in the great lakes region has gone as well no matter what his western sponsors say!
Because Museveni lacks compassion he embarked on massive retrenchment and privatization of public enterprises creating the ‘new’ poor of former civil servants. In Ghana which also implemented a shock therapy version of structural adjustment the compassionate leadership took steps to protect those affected. The government found ways and means to redeploy many of those laid off. In addition “These workers received a benefits package including a cash grant – four months’ gross salary plus two additional months’ salary for each year of uninterrupted service – and training in another profession. Other benefits such as career counseling, subsidized tools, and food for work and input loans for those workers who chose to work in agriculture were also available…”(D. A. Sahn 1994). Out of the compassionate concern for the welfare of Ghanaian children and low income families, the Ghana government decided to provide school lunch and delay privatization of public utilities which would have increased cost recovery expenses for many users.
In Uganda instead of the government making efforts to help those that had been retrenched (as Ghana did) and young unemployed graduates, Museveni has condemned them for laziness and drunkenness and that unemployment is voluntary because there are many jobs in security forces.
Regarding privatization of public utilities, instead of resisting external pressure (as he has done regarding dismissing and jailing those who stole GAVI and CHOGM money) to delay their privatization as Ghana did, Museveni did the opposite irrespective of consequences on low income families. “… when the IMF and the World Bank a few years ago insisted that Uganda privatizes its water supply and sanitation systems, they deliberately created lucrative opportunities for Western corporations which gave the Uganda leadership a short notice to remove government subsidies to water. The result was that the people could not afford the clean drinking water while the Western corporations laughed all the way to the bank.
“In the meantime, the privatization of water supplies for the benefit of Western multinationals decreased access to clean water, while the biggest killer[s] of [Uganda] children clearly are preventable diseases caused by lack of clean water” (New African November 2007).
The high cost of water and soap has caused many Ugandans to miss bathing and are producing repellent body odor (and scabies is spreading) in all parts of Uganda all because of Museveni’s lack of compassion and sensitivity about the suffering of Uganda people except those from his Bahororo tribe.
These examples make it clear that Museveni is Uganda’s number one problem. He lacks compassion and sensitivity and above all despises Ugandans – you need to look at his body language when he is not happy at rallies or the language he uses. But he has a strong desire to govern a people he does not care about because he has not yet found a better place to migrate to – the Tutsi Empire and East African political federation have taken longer to materialize than he had hoped. Meanwhile, he prefers to work with foreigners than Ugandans. That is why expatriates are flocking into Uganda unhindered and snatching jobs from Ugandans most of them languishing in exile. That is why refugees and illegal immigrants (bus loads from neighboring countries) are tacitly welcome (to boost his support likely to lead to an Ivory Coast type situation if not checked quickly) and end up occupying Uganda land (the disappearance of files on and the omission of migrants in Uganda’s 2010 population report should raise eye brows. The population report has many errors and should not serve as a tool for policy formulation). Museveni is also dishing out public land which he has distorted as government land for him to allocate to anybody anytime.
The new bill on cultural leaders is designed to win him votes, not to benefit chiefs’ families and their people in the medium to long term. The chiefs must understand that – they are being ‘bribed’ to vote in favor of Museveni on February 18, 2011. Besides, Museveni is using the bill to pave his way to declare Uganda a kingdom with himself as the first Muhororo hereditary king. This has been mentioned many times and none has denied it. Ugandans beware of where you are headed. You have been warned in advance. This is not lunacy or day dreaming as some detractors are saying. It is real and will happen if we re-elect Museveni!
If Museveni is re-elected Ugandans must know that he will privatize Uganda land and offer it for sale or long-term lease to foreign states and multinationals (He will argue that Ugandans are lazy and drunkards and will never be able to utilize so much idle arable land. Some of his ministers have already begun to talk along those lines). It happened in Madagascar but the brave men and women of that country objected and removed the government that entered into the deal with a South Korean company. The deal was subsequently terminated. Ugandans should prevent a repeat of the Madagascar government blunder.
Here is another warning. Should Museveni be re-elected he will immediately push Uganda into the East African economic integration and political federation probably initially with Kenya that seems to be keen on Museveni’s re-election. Rwanda and Burundi might join. Kenya, Rwanda and Burundi want land for their excess populations and Uganda will be invaded by people and livestock who will then use their languages because Uganda constitution allows it. Kenya will capture Uganda’s labor and manufactured goods markets because it has more skilled personnel and excess manufactured products. In land, labor and markets for manufactured goods Uganda will be the net loser.
Can someone tell Ugandans what Uganda will gain from economic integration and political federation apart from having an East African passport and Museveni being the first president of the federation – a position that he will then use to complete his project on Tutsi Empire with western support in its eastern and central African geopolitics.
Uganda voters and others have been given enough information on Ugandans-at-Heart Forum and on www.kashambuzi.com. Use it wisely and get Museveni out of state house to save Uganda from possible political and military confrontation which could be costly in lives and property. The lesson of Tunisia is still fresh in our minds about what can happen when a dictatorial leader overstays his welcome and makes citizens suffer. We were told Mobutu would never go anywhere because he had solid support of his army and western backing. We were told Haile Selassie would never go anywhere because he had solid support of the army and western backing. Museveni thinks he will never go anywhere unless he chooses to because he has solid support of the army and western backing. Many Ugandans think Museveni is not an exception. It is a matter of time if he escapes defeat on February 18, 2001 because Ugandans have become enlightened, dialectical and understand who Museveni is and what he stands for. The elite and enlightened peasants must lead the rest of Ugandans to make life better for those who have been trampled on by Museveni for 30 years if you include the five years of guerrilla war. Wat Tyler and John Bull led the peasant revolt in medieval England that effected fundamental changes and contributed to the end of the feudal system which Museveni is trying to bring back with his Tutsi Empire project that has some western backers.
So voters, on February 18, 2011, do your national duty and exercise fully your inalienable human right – go to your polling station with one goal in mind: to defeat Museveni. Do it and go back home safely. You will save yourself, your family and your country unnecessary trouble. The challenge is serious and real and the golden opportunity to address it is now. Uganda needs a leader that puts the interests of the people before those of his own and has compassion and is sensitive. Ugandans that fit this profile are there.
If you fail to remove Museveni because you were bribed or intimidated or he is your good employer then do not complain later when Museveni tightens the noose around your neck. You have no room for excuse because you have been warned well in advance. Now you know and our Creator is with you. Good luck.