What can Uganda learn from the collapse of the Romanovs’ dynasty?

The political developments in Uganda are worrying and could end up in another bloody confrontation if common sense does not prevail at home and abroad. In order to find a lasting solution one has to identify the root cause of the problem like a good medical doctor does before prescribing medication. Pointing out the cause of the problem in Uganda has made some readers uncomfortable who have resorted to using uncalled for language to intimidate and silence the author because they do not want to hear the truth that may force them to accommodate others. These are Ugandans that believe in winner-take-all. Those Ugandans who harbor the notion that they were born to rule others in perpetuity are mistaken and are on the wrong side of history which does not entertain such notions. In Europe those who believed in the divine right of kings were defeated. And in societies where leaders in government and opposition compromise political problems are resolved peacefully resulting in stability, economic development and improvement in the standard of living of all. On the other hand in those societies where leaders are autocrats (rulers who hold absolute power over societies) and resist change the end result is a sad one, sometimes even tragic. The story of the Romanovs is an illustration of the latter.

Rwanda government can do what it wants with impunity

I have read, listened to debates and conversed with many people in Burundi, DRC, Rwanda, Uganda and the United Nations in New York to find out why Rwanda authorities – government and armed forces – are not held accountable for the atrocities they are reported to have committed since 1990 when RPF (Rwanda Patriotic Front) invaded Rwanda and are still committing in Eastern DRC and Rwanda itself.

In January/February 2010, I spent thirty days in Burundi, DRC and Rwanda and conversed with many people from all walks of life. I got a lot of information mostly from informal and anonymous conversations. The following information is what I have collected before, during and after the mission. I am making this contribution in an effort to find a durable solution to the challenges not only in Rwanda but in the Great Lakes region as a whole.

Enabling environment

Some developments have emboldened Rwanda government (and its army) to do what it wants with impunity. Here are some of them.

DRC – A country created for ruthless exploitation with impunity

The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) – the third largest country in Africa (2,344,885 sq.km) after Algeria (2,381,741 sq.km) and Sudan (2,505,813 sq.km) – is potentially the richest on the continent. Paradoxically Congolese people are among the poorest on earth. According to many Congolese, the principal cause of this paradox is to be found in colonial and post-colonial ruthless exploitation of Congo’s vast human and non-human resources. Ruthless exploitation of Congo with impunity began with the arrival of Portuguese and Arabs. The hunt for slaves and ivory using European weapons resulted in constant armed warfare within and among different ethnic groups and depopulation of vast areas with serious political, economic and social consequences.