People who know Museveni well will tell you that during his secondary education life he exhibited restless rather than leadership behavior. Two developments appear to have disoriented him fundamentally in the late 1950s and early 1960s. First, during negotiations for Uganda’s independence, Bahororo (Museveni is a Muhororo) of Ankole demanded a separate district to recover part of former Mpororo kingdom. Bahima refused. It is believed that in retaliation, Museveni, as president, has refused restoration of Ankole kingdom. Second, Bairu’s political ascendancy in Ankole kingdom as independence approached was disturbing. Until then Bairu had been treated like slaves by Bahima and Bahororo. Bairu – a term coined by Bahima according to Speke (1863, 2006) – means slaves.
Realizing that numerically, Bahororo are insignificant and could not change Bairu’s political trajectory democratically, Museveni opted for a military solution: to stop Bairu’s political advance and restore Bahororo’s lost glory. His military participation in the overthrow of Amin was supposed to catapult him to Uganda’s presidency in 1980 election which he lost. He used the excuse of rigged 1980 elections which had been certified by the Commonwealth Observer team (which he has used to certify his rigged elections since 1996) to start a devastating guerrilla war. Museveni was aware that he would not win the next elections – hence the military option.