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Month September 2010

Buganda under a State of Emergency again


1/4. In selected areas of Buganda, at least according the GoU/NRM mouth piece, the New Vision [20th Sept. 10] any meeting between 5 people or more (whether family members, school buddies or not] will need the permission, not of just the Police but of the IGP _ the Inspector General of Police, who happens not to be a Police man, after all.

2/4. The sad thing here is that, last time Buganda was placed under emergency Rule [’66-’71], the then Dictator had the bravery to use Parliament to rubber-stamp the decision, which had to be renewed every 6 months.

3/4. Today, this is done without even a Cabinet paper, let alone a pronunciation on it. It is done by the “security” Forces, on orders from the ‘Almighty ABOVE” [who ever this may be].

4/4. Conclusion:

In other words, the freedoms enshrined in the Constitution are now taken away at his whims, fears, like and dislikes of a brutal, selfish, group, scared even of children gathering to play a ‘banana-fibre’ game of football. Hmmmm???

Christopher Muwanga,

Nakasero,
Kampala.

Statement About The Disputed UJA Elections Held Today, September 18, 2010


Dear Ugandans at heart,

I withdrew from contesting in the Uganda Journalists Association (UJA) elections as president, due to irreconcilable differences on matters of constitutionality. The out-going executive was comfortable acting in disregard of the law and I and my supporters were not.

There were two constitutions being peddled. When we asked under which constitution the general assembly was going to be conducted, we were not listened to. Instead we heard inconsistent attempts to brand the “new” constitution as a “draft” which was being circulated to members.

Note that the new constitution which is neither dated nor signed was never adopted by any UJA assembly, the supreme organ of the association. Instead it’s laden with obnoxious provisions that peg attendance of general assemblies and voting to payment of fees. Another amazing provision makes the President almost the alpha and omega (but that’s for another debate)!

We believe this is the provision that was employed to deploy anti-riot police at City Hall to block many journalists, including senior members whose voice of reason would have saved the day, from entering the assembly hall.

It’s disturbing that some journalists shouted, “Let’s vote, we shall check the constitution after.” Maybe some were not bonafide journalists and can quickly be excused. For, which journalist worth their salt can blatantly give a stamp of approval to an exercise in total disregard of the law? It’s a sad day! It’s a black Saturday for journalism in Uganda!

The authentic UJA constitution that was disregarded admits all members to the assembly and bestows voting rights to various categories of members. I am coginsant of the fact that members of any association need to pay membership and subscription fees to show loyalty. However, I deplore the intentional blocking of members from registering purportedly because they don’t support a particular candidate! We are not blind to that because it happened and there are testimonies! That’s rigging. That’s constitutes a bloated register!

Many journalists who are unhappy with the goings-on within UJA have called for the founding of another credible association: An association that cares about accountability, professionalism and transparency. An association that derives pride from having thousands of members on its register and not one which locks out others that abhor uncouth methods.

I am being persuaded by this school of thought. It’s an idea worth pursuing. It’s a proposal over which we shall be holding consultations in the coming days.

In the meantime, I would urge the founders of UJA and senior members, especially former executive committee members to meet and save the association from further collapse. However, if the elders think that this is the best UJA can be or has ever been, then my invitation can pass without a response.

But I know for sure, what I have witnessed in the past two general assemblies is reason why many journalists (senior and junior), have abandoned UJA activities and cannot touch it even with a long log. I could detect the apprehensiveness of several journalists as I campaigned.

Lastly, I would like to thank all journalists who encouraged me to stand and those who actively supported.  Your support has not been in vain. It has unveiled the dirt that needs to be swept. And for sure I know, the mission to redeem UJA is a cause and not a campaign bound issue.

HENRY MUKASA NSUBUGA

Senior Journalist

New Vision Group

Why Lango Sub-region should continue rejecting NRM


Why Lango Sub-region should continue rejecting NRM

Since 1996 elections Lango sub-region has been continuosly voting against NRM government. There are a number of reasons why the Langi have taken this stand.  First of all the Langi are democrats and they believe in competitions which are free and fair including politics.  When the first elections were held in Uganda in 1958 the Langi voted for their best candidates for both LEGCO and District Council without any coercion.  During those days the parties which competed for Langi votes were Uganda National Congress (UNC) and Democratic Party (DP).  Milton Obote won the LEGCO seat on UNC ticket.  While both UNC and DP councillors got elected to Lango Distric Council.  Those were the days when there were lively debates in Lango District Council.  The Langi embraced both the UNC and DP without any problem.

Political parties which operated in Lango sub-region from 1960s until 1985 were Ugand Peoples Congress and Democratic Party.  Unfortunately the DP became weaker and weaker because most Langi embraced the UPC policies and voted for the party.  The UPC government was overthrown in 1971 and then there was a period of political lull in Lango.  However political activities went underground until the liberation of 1979.  The Langi were happy with the return of competitive politics in 1980.  In that election they freely elected candidates of their choices without any coercion.  But in 1985 the rule of the gun returned which the Langis detested, though the opportunists embraced it.  The Langi have always resented the rule by the gun and any form of coercion.

When in 1996 Yoweri Musevini Kaguta organized his sham elections the Langi rejected him.  They again rejected him in 2001 and in the last elections in 2006.  They have done so in-order to show Ugandans that they do not like leaders who come to power by the power of the gun.

The second reason why the Lango sub-region should not vote for NRM government is because of their record in power for the last 25 years.  Since NRM came to power all forms of public services have deteriorated in Lango and many parts of Uganda.  The hospitals are just a shell with no medicine.  The government schools where the children of the poor go are performing very badly.  Most roads in Lango are impassable during the rainy season.  Corruption is ripe in all spheres of the Ugandan public life.  In the above light why should they vote for NRM government to continue marginalizing the poor?

There is a new breed of Langi politicians going around telling the Langis that if they do not want be marginalised this time they should vote NRM.  What a lie.  For the last twenty five years the Langis have suffered.  It would be wrong for them to accept that sort of lie.  Two constituencies in Lango namely Dokolo and Maruzi voted NRM.  When the Langis look around do they see and development in those areas better than in other Lango areas?  Why should this politicians lie to the Langi.  The Langi should also check other sub-regions like Teso, Bugisu and Bunyoro which have been voting NRM for sometime whether there are any meaning developments in those areas.

The Langi should understand how the NRM government operates.  The NRM government is only interested in keeping themselves in for as long as they can.  They will use any means available to achieve their objectives including bribing opinion leaders and buying votes during elections.  In case of failure they go open rigging. I would therefore appeal to my fellow Langi to continue rejecting NRM government as they have been doing before and vote for opposition.

John Ojok-Akona

Basajjabalaba beats up journalist & He will get away with it again??


1/4. The ka-Basajja [little Basajja] took over his granddad’s hides and skins business, started in Ishaka-Bushenyi in the 1930’s of the last century.

The only notable development the old man put up was a family Mosque in his area. He lived happily with everybody and is never reported to have beaten anybody, let alone during the Holy Month of Ramathan, in public. Phew???? The grandson may be prodigal and maybe carrying a curse.

2/4. But, why did this business survive so long, crossing decades and centuries?

The main reason could be that the Basajja’s of Old never meddled in politics and they stuck to their trade trading in hides]. The other reasons may be that he remained self-sufficient.

3/4. But the scion has ‘diverged’ and, judging by the latest news from the Auditor General of Uganda, he is a PROXY of fraud. He takes loans from the BoU [of all places!!], steals the collateral and sells the collateral again, with no one raising a finger. Imagine such IMPUNITY!!

4/4. Conclusion: The Basajja of today is not the Basajja of yester years. He is corrupt and a ‘business condom’ [if one may borrow that word] for he is used by the powers that be to ‘eat’ public funds, public market places, etc. He was bequeathed a family enterprise but he now has, like the biblical prodigal son, gone his ways.

Pride comes before any fall. His beating of a poor journalist and his impunity of dishing out money, in public [may be taxi payers’ money since he is subsidized by BoU], he has dug his own grave, even though he may himself and his protectors, not ‘see’ this. His days are counted.

La Alluta Continua – the struggle continues.

Christopher Muwanga,

Nakasero,

Kampala.

Sembabule robbery -A Microcosm and Rehearsal


Dear Ugandans at heart,

This post contains 5 bullets, including a ‘post -script’.So please bear with us when reading it.

Summary: Sembabule  is, in the electoral sense, a microcosm of the eternally flawed Electoral process in today’s Uganda. Indeed, the Sembabule NRM vote-handling and the way machinations were the order of the day, must be painful spectacle and experience to the anti-Corruption crusader. The absence of the practice of right of polling stations to declare their results as tallied, leaving that right to the Electoral Commission [or, to a body far away from the centre of events (from the Stations)] is the biggest disservice that is being perpetuated by the current plutocratic regime.

One candidate wins at a station but the announcement comes out with the opponent as the winner, with altered results. We saw this in the 2001 and in the 2006 Presidential elections and we have seen it now, in the current [NRM=National Rigging Movement as the Red Pepper put it] Primaries. But, Sembabule is only an illustration.

1/5. One of the aberrations in our Uganda of today is: Many Ugandan activists and commentators look at the current M7 plutocracy in isolation of its ingrained ideology of “super-race” syndrome, thus missing the pointer to their actions, both tactical[short term] and strategic [long term]. Otherwise, it would be easy to predict their actions in advance, as was the case with my post on this forum, some days back.

I shared on Sembabule, on this forum, that, in the minds of the generals like Tinyefuza, etc,  “SEMBABULE MUST be liberated” at any cost and that Bululi and ‘Bunyala’ [whatever the later means] are rehearsals. Main target: Sembabule. The  home of ‘Bigo-bya-Mugyenyi’  and of ‘Ntuusi’ archeological sites/settlements must be ‘free’ or may be [sorry for the term], even ‘pure’ – politically, culturally, etc, depending on one’s area of interest.

2/5. Back to the mis-election in Sembabule where the ‘bad side’, that is, the ‘anti-Kutesa, anti-establishment’ side, “LOST COMPLETELY” [Monitor’s words in quotes].

Have a look: The Daily Monitor wrote today [09.09.10, p.3]:

The ‘big’ loss

Theodore Ssekikubo, the MP for Lwemiyaga, lost his position as NRM flag bearer in the 2011 elections to Mr. Patrick Nkalubo, by 43 votes. yesterday he rejected the results, saying, evidence’ had been burnt. Mr. Ssekikuubo’s faction also lost with Ms Joy Kabatsi coming behind incumbent MP Ms Anifa Kawooya, in the race for woman MP flag bearer

What the caption did not add was that the current LC V Chair, from Ssekikuubo’s side, lost too, to the same Kutesa’s side that, by declaration, ‘swept the board’.

3/5. The Truth

But what loss are we talking of here, in the case of Hon. Ssekikuubo? They say he lost by 43 votes but, the same syndrome of declaring results that differ from those tallied at the polling station, as the Supreme Court confirmed both in the 2001 and the 2006 elections, is still with us and was rampant here.

An Example will illustrate what I mean: We take one polling station in Lwemiyaga, Sembabule [Hon. Ssekikuubo’s constituency]:

For Mr. Nkalubo [on Kutesa’s side and opposing Hon. Ssekikuubo]:

Station: Kamwojje.

Tallied: 68 votes (on site)

Declared : 680 votes (by the Returning officer, at the District)

So, if Ssekikuubo lost by 43 votes as declared and yet the opponent got, from nowhere, a bonus of 612 votes on top of those from the polling station as tallied and signed for, even by his opponent’s own agents, who is Ssekikuubo not to ‘run amok?’.

This is where any electoral officers in Uganda should be ashamed. People vote and their votes are ‘counted’ on site but the powers that be, in this case, the GISO’s, the DISO’s and the RDC’s [all so called GoU workers but on partisan activities] submit doctored results. Indeed, this practice, plus that of deleting names from the roll on polling day, even after verification at the same polling stations, remain the main ways of rigging an election – the reason the EC must change or cause civil strife in Uganda.

4/5. Conclusion & Recommendation: The practice of barring stations from declaring their results as tallied and even forbidding the media from quoting them [like Paulo Muwanga and Mzee Kikira’s EC  in 1980 –yet the bush war was ostensibly against such practice], leaving the right to declare the results ONLY to the returning officers at the Districts/The EC Headquarters, is one of the main sticking points in Ugandan electoral malpractice(s). And unless this practice of altering vote counts by manipulation is outlawed, then forget any fight against rigging. It is the root cause of the Ugandan electoral ROT.

Christopher Muwanga,

Nakasero,

Kampala.

5/5. P/S:

(A/B).

GISO stands for “Gombolola {sub-county} Internal Security Officer.

DISO stands for “District Internal Security Officer”.

RDC stands for “Resident District Commissioner” – a political presidential political appointee, normally bragging that they represent the H.E. The President,  in their places of deployment. They are in charge of security and therefore responsible for denying the opposition the constitutional right of assembly and demonstration.

The three GoU officers are/were the NRM primaries returning officials, on State expense. The fusion of “party and State” are therefore complete in today’s Uganda. Otherwise, their daily docket involves monitoring  NRM ‘eating’ programmes like NAADS, NUSAF, etc, in addition to harassing and blackmailing the opposition and even, in many cases, political rivals, competitors and challengers, perceived or real, at village level.

(B/B)

History and current Practice: In any election, recently or in the past, it is these officials that normally alter the tallied results before sending them to an NRM clearing centre that then sends the doctored results onwards to the EC [National Electoral Commission of Kiggundu]. It is for the because Kiggundu and his commission are unable to reject the results doctored by the NRM agents [instead of the agents of the commission on site] that the opposition thinks he is compromised. This doctoring was twice proved before the Supreme Court of Uganda and by the International observers. Since we see the same in today’s rehearsal and the personnel at the national EC remain the same, the fears are that the electoral roll will continue to be doctored on the eve of the election and that the votes declared will always differ from those cast and tallied on site. Uganda’s electoral pains therefore are not about to ‘go away’.

CM.

09.09.10.

NRM Violence & Youth League Politics in Uganda


Summary: In perusing Uganda’s party-political history, two Youth leagues and their violence come to mind, both threw punches at National Delegates Conferences and elsewhere. But they differ on two ingredients . One: the reasons. Two: the action of the parent’ bodies, in the wake of the youth chaos. Have a look.

A. Case one:

1) It is 1964. The Cold war and therefore the ideological war is raging, not only between the Super powers but also between their lackeys, Uganda not excluded. The UPC delegates’ conference has to take place in Gulu. As a prelude to that, things in Buganda are ‘hotting up’. The UPC cannot consider itself a national party without branches in Buganda [UPC-KY provision in the Alliance Agreement]. The UPC Buganda youth are therefore punching it out (must have seen pictures of youthful Bidandi Ssali, Ssegwanga Misisi, etc throwing punches at the UPC Buganda office). The struggle is bigger though. One Kakonge has graduated with an M.Sc. in Agriculture from India but, drunk on liberation ideology, has become the first Ugandan graduate, with a Masters at that, to not seek a job! Obote is scared. The western -leaning ideologues [the wa-Bezi group] are scared. They must be shown exit. And the Place: Gulu.

2) The UPC went to Gulu. Punches flew. There was an ideological shift. The so called socialists/young Turks were overthrown. Kakonge was no more as Party CEO or Secretary General. The Ibingira-Nadiope group won, especially with the Busoga ‘validation act’ as the icing.

Cause: The struggle was purely ideological.

Verdict: The unruly youth wing was proscribed. The Executive banned the UPC youth Wing[what democracy???] In other words, in its usual ‘cannibalistic style’,  the party ‘fed on its own children’, the divide-and-rule way.

B. Case two

The year is 2010

3. The venue is Mandela National Stadium at Namboole [a project first mooted by the Chinese in 1965]. The Regime is a mature plutocracy. It is NRM primary elections, whereby the winner is assured of 100% [??] rigged success in the upcoming National elections.

Dictatorships thrive on the divide-and-rule theme of old and ‘power-drunkenness’ which, combined, make the oligarchs allergic to democracy.

4. Look: NRM say they have called the youth to Namboole but BUT in detail, they are in reality bunches of Northerners, Buganda representatives (not Baganda), Easterners and so called ‘Westerners’ [some districts in the west are represented by Kampala residents].The way things move, it is obvious that the party CEO, one Mbabazi has deployed his ubiquitous forces such that his ‘region mates’ have everything easy. Meanwhile, the tough, excitable Bagisu are causing chaos with their ‘imbalu‘ [circumcision] dancing, which takes the DISO’s, GISO’s and the other Mbabazi’s ‘underground forces’, by surprise. Why? In a mob environment, anything like sloganeering can be followed. Indeed that is what ensures, eventually: the Northern youth, taking advantage of the mob-atmosphere, announce and tell any journalist that wishes to hear, how the westerners have gerrymandered all proceedings.

5. In the command centre, the powers that be are worried. The first question from the “Big Man” to Mbabazi seems to be, “Who are these people and who is their leader? Who is the architect of this disaffection’ did their money not reach them?“. When the answer came that these were possibly IPC/FDC youth from Acholi, the boss did not take it on the surface. So, instead of banishing them as the 1964 leaders did at Gulu, the big man took his usual wisdom, against advice: He went on air and addressed the conference and the Nation and named the culprits: the Conference Organizers and the NRM Electoral Commission (in other words, those ‘westerners’ and Mbabazi’s and cheats are NOT M7 style!!”

6. This way, the big man achieved many things:

i.        The NRM chaos is not of his own making.

ii.        the so-called ‘westerner’ vehicle to power is an imaginations. people make mistakes individually.

iii.        by openly distancing himself from the chaos, the Big man can soothe the rebellious youth and therefore keep them in the fold. He will appear [to the partisans,, to the Ugandans and most important, to his maters the Works over, to be above all the shame, corruption  and the chaos that has characterized the NRM ‘selections’ and vote buying.

C. Observation:

i.        . Causes: The 1964 UPC youth league chaos was ideologically based. It was not partisan. The NRM 2010 one is tribal, encouraged to be that.

ii.         The 1964 Gulu-chaos was sectored into sides based on elders’ groups. The Ibingira-Kakonge divide was clear. the 2010 Nambole thing is based on ‘who has paid out more money?’

iii.        The 1964 youth ‘riots’ took on the leadership but the 2010 NRM is funny: It’s the youth against the youth, on a tribal basis. That these are/maybe FCD, DP or any other agent provocateurs does not hold water because, after all, they hold NRM party cards and have been elected by their colleges back home.

iv.        Finally, except by partaking of the opposition tear-gas, the NRM leadership has not done anything about the rioting youth. they are encouraged, instead, to act as they have, because that is the modus operandi of the party.

D. Conclusion:

Uganda is gone and is now a failed state, where hooliganism, even inside the “Party and State” (fused together),  is tolerated, if not encouraged. Pray for us. To the “North American Association”: Did you have “The Restoration of Uganda as a Country-State” as a Prayer item on the Agenda- although it is reported here you were not enthusiastic about your meet this year?

Christopher Muwanga,

Nakasero,

Kampala.

The Olara Otuunu bubble has burst


 

by Yoga Adhola.

A little background is necessary for our analysis of the Olara Otuunu bubble. The man who created the bubble is Chris Opoka, former Secretary General of UPC and now Olara’s presidential envoy.

At one time Chris Opoka and I were very close. I was also very close to Olara Otuunu. I was so close to both of them that they both, separately, at one point toyed with the idea of sponsoring me for the UPC presidency. On the other hand the two were not close to one another.

Chris Opoka recently ( Sun, 29 Aug 2010) revealed on UPCNET: “I am a senior member of the IPC steering committee who played a key role in the formation of IPC and I am the Local Coordinator of IPC who gets to sit also in the summit. What you say is totally untrue.”

From this vantage point Chris Opoka told me had come to the view that Olara Otuunu was popular across the board. By that he meant FDC, CP, Jemma and all the other political parties. Chris Opoka believed that once Olara Otuunu is on the ground, he would become the flag-bearer of IPC. This belief is a classic case of a bubble i.e. a speculative scheme that comes to nothing.

Having thus convinced himself, Chris Opoka began his manouvres to get Olara Otuunu persuaded that he could run for the UPC presidenecy. The points man for this task was Yoga Adhola. I did go along for a while hoping the project would not take off. However, when I realised Olara Otuunu was taking Chris Opoka seriously I tactfully removed myself from the project. Initially I would insist that in stead of me passing messages by phone, Chris Opoka should send an e-mail. At other times I would ask Olara Otuunu to call Chris Opoka in stead of me passing messages from Chris Opoka to Olara.

To cut a long story short, Olara Otuunu was brought back into Uganda. Chris Opoka moved full gear to have Olara Otuunu elected president of UPC so that he can meet the first qualification of competing for being the fag-bearer of IPC. In this mission he somehow found common ground with a group of right-wing UPCs at the helm of MOF. They are the group popularly known in UPC circles as the Gang of Four and they share one thing in common: they are rabidly against the Obote family. It is important to point out that they also don’t like Chris Opoka.

The Gang of Four wanted to defeat the Obote family as represented by Jimmy Akena and Chris Opoka was chasing his illusion of getting Olara Otuunu as the flag-bearer of IPC. The two interests dovetailed very well and the unholy alliance was sealed. With Chris Opoka controlling the machinery of the party and the Gang of Four that of MOF, the financier of the party, the unholy alliance was unbeatable.
Thereafter unholy alliance moved to manipulate the process leading to elections.

The UPC patriarch from Teso, Isiagi is reported to have said that when the alliance saw the kind of crowd Jimmy Akena was pulling as he moved from Lango through Teso, they got shaken. It is at this point that they decided to avoid going through the primaries and chose to use the delegates of 2005. Remember there was money given by the donors for undertaking the grass roots elections. There was also time for it.

The unholy alliance feared that if they went through the primaries, the delegates that they would face would be dominated by Jimmy Akena. The advantage the 2006 delegates would bring is that they were mainly constituted by Chris Opio who is a member of the Gang of Four.

The other thing which needs to be noted is that the FDC was also due to elect its president around the same time. Chris Opoka frantically worked to get UPC to elect its President before FDC did because it would give Olara Otunnu some weird advantage which I have not yet understood.

Again to cut a long story short, Olara Otuunu was eventually installed as president of UPC. The task that remained for Chris Opoka was to manouvre his man to become the flag-bearer of IPC. From there it would be a short and easy trip to becoming president of Uganda. What an illusion!!

In their illusion, they were totally oblivious of the ability of FDC to manouvre. It is only a few weeks ago that they woke up to realise they had been completely outmanouvred: Olara Otuunu was not making it as flag-bearer of IPC. That is when they decided to find “a formula of getting out of IPC”.

The formula they came out with is to create a crisis in IPC and then blame FDC. Given their ineptitude they so mismanaged this manouvre that it became clear to many that UPC was lacking in leadership. On the day of the nomination UPC’s stand was empty and no explanation was given. Chris Opoka and Patrick Mwoda went to the grounds but did not say anything.

What then are the excuses (not the reasons) that Olara Otuunu is putting out to rationalise his leaving IPC? In the New Vision of Saturday, 21st August, 2010, in an article written by Moses Mulondo, Bosa, the Secretary General of UPC is quoted criticising FDC for organising countrywide demonstration against electoral Commission and calling it an IPC affair.
 
“That is the same way FDC disguised its Buganda region campaign launch during which the two former Katikkiros, Joseph Mulwanyammuli and Dan Muliika declared support for the IPC. Since it was at an FDC function, the media reported it as if the two had joined FDC,” Bossa said.

It is ironical that having condemned FDC for organising such demonstrations, the UPC leadership comes around and claims that the IPC is soft on the electoral Commission issue. In the statement in which Olara Otunnu declares his withdrawal from the IPC he states: “I should like to stress again that what UPC insists on is and is campaigning for is genuinely free and fair elections organised by an independent Electoral Commission and based on a clean and verifiable register of voters”

What is the real difference between what Bosa condemns FDC for and what Olara Otuunu is calling for? As one commentator on Ugandans-at-Heart said Olara Otuunu’s explanations don’t add up; he must be hiding the real reasons for his departure from the IPC. Whatever the real reason, his bubble has burst.
_______________________________________________________
Yoga Adholais is a former Editor-in-chief of The UPC paper The people and a leading ideologue of UPC.

The opposition kibokos squads should be modelled around the Mungiki experimenet in Kenya


Folks:

Have you posed to wonder about the cause of massive rigging in NRM?  According to my analysis, it has a lot to do with the forthcoming NEC elections. One camp-read mafia-wanted to bolster their line up so they targeted independent or unpredictable NRM members whom they could not count on.

Yes, the rigging was ordered by a senior NRM official from Kyadondo Road who hand picked most of those crooked returning officers and members of NRM’s EC to do his bidding. I challenge the journalists in Uganda -let NRM spins doctors deny this-to put their ears or the ground in order to get to the truth behind the open, massive and violent rigging witnessed in the primaries.

The just ended or ongoing NRM primaries are its waterloo. Mark my words, NRM like KANU after the 1988 mlolongo elections will never be the same.  But can the opposition rise to the occasion and punish or contain NRM at least at the parliamentary level where the NRM fallout is likely to be massive?   Will the opposition waste the opportunity due to their endless bickering, disunity and stupidity as reflected in the allegations of some in UAH against leading opposition crusaders?

With each passing day and the comments from some in the opposition, I say thank alleluia, I am in the neither/nor camp. I could not possibly associate myself with such imbeciles. And yes, folks, some are imbeciles.

The tragedy is that they delude themselves that they are helping their candidates. No. They are screwing them kabisa. That is why the opposition is more likely than not to waste the crisis presented to them by NRM.

I am hoping the news that the opposition has set up their kiboko squad is for real.  It is about time. I hope and pray that the opposition kibokos squads will be efficient, brave, ruthless, and decisive and determined as the Mungiki was. The opposition folks behind their Kiboko squads should study the Mungiki model.  Trust me, if they can mould kiboko squads that are 50 percent as good and dreaded as the Mungiki, then NRM will not dare.  Mungiki believed in the Colin Powell doctrine.

If the news were to reach Kampala that several yellow Kiboko squads, and yes even those seeking offices elsewhere had been whipped-do not kill, beat or assault women- but whip them really good and use overwhelming force, hell will break lose. Chances are once NRM’ kiboko squad hear such terror they will piss in their pants and run for dear life. Use the cell phone and you tube to broadcast your success with NRM goons.

The message I want to send to the opposition is this: better be serious because the yellow kiboko squads will be unleashed. Do not panic, but encircle them and then pounce. And when you pounce use, I repeat,  use overwhelming force and hit them really good,  but do not kill them.  And do not beat or molest women.  If you get a chance to reach or encircle Mutale sue your imagination but irrespective, hit him hard. If you get a chance to reach that scam bag from Bushenyi who beats journalists, beat him really good.

Fear must be met with fear. But the opposition better be serious because their supporters are going to to put their bodies in line of fire. The opposition cannot afford to blink.

Yes 2011 will be war. And if a police person like the Regional police commander who was commanding the police in Bukedea presents him or herself to facilitate NRM rigging or kiboko squad, I say chafuwa. That police commander is an idiot and could have been killed by her own police forces.

If NRM is going to use mobs to intimidate voters or influence election, outcomes, then the opposition has no choice, but to mobilize their mobs as well.
WBK

Kizza Besigye, will probably give YKM another run for his money!


Dear Ugandans-at-Heart,
As I sit and ponder about things that pop into my mind, uninvited or otherwise, I ask myself questions in search of reason. Recently, this IPC thing has been evading my already crowded mind and I have been scratching my head to find rationale for its existence. What is the purpose of the IPC? Is it to win the 2011 elections or to serve some external purpose? If it is to win the 2011 elections then all the fuss is misguided because there is no basis to believe or even forecast that to win this election it needs a united opposition. However, if the purpose is to streamline the cash flow of external support into one entity then a united opposition is undesirable but justifiable.

The underlying reason behind most, if not all, political coalitions is to marshal together the individual weight of the separate parts into a single formidable force to win political power (elections) or fend off some political action. The IPC seeks, so we are told, to combine the weight of FDC, UPC, DP, JEEMA, CP, SDP, PPP and the numerous briefcase political parties to wrestle power from M7 and NRM. Forget that I have read somewhere that the man who passed through the furnace or rather made a successful hunt and is not willing to hand over the carcasses to anyone! Let us leave that alone and concentrate on the weight of our separate parts i.e. the major stakeholders in the IPC or rather the major opposition players in the Ugandan body politic. The dependable metrics to assess the weight of the opposition parties is to look at their performance in past presidential elections, presence in Parliament, Chairmanships at the District and other electoral offices. For my armchair analysis, I will stick with performance in past presidential elections and presence in Parliament.
In the past three presidential elections, these were the results (rigging is a constant): 1996 – YK Museveni 75.5%, PK Ssemogerere 22.3%, MK Mayanja 2.2%; in 2001 – YK Museveni 69.4%, Kizza Besigye 27.7%, Aggrey Awori 1.4%, MK Mayanja 1.0% and rest combined for 0.4%. In 2006, YK Museveni 59.26%, Kizza Besigye 37.39%, JS Kizito 1.58%, Bwanika 0.95%, M. Obote 0.82%. Now, you don’t have to be a rocket scientist to conclude that the figures don’t add up to justify a coalition. If for example, there was a coalition in 2006 as some people argued then as they argue now; YK Museveni would have polled at round 59.26% and the IPC candidate would have pulled 40.74%. This would have been around the projection if 2001 figures were used as a snapshot into the future. If we rely on the 2006 results and the presidential election trend, we wouldn’t be faltered to conclude that 1) Museveni’s numbers will decline further, 2) Kizza Besigye’s numbers will climb and 3) the rest of the opposition will contribute around 4% of the vote. I intentionally say ‘Besigye’s numbers’ and not FDC because it is evident that it wasn’t the party that polled 37.39% of the national vote and only managed a meager 37 seats out of the 320 elective offices in parliament! Some might argue that that extra 4-8% of the vote that the rest of the opposition will likely contribute can mean the difference between an outright Kizza Besigye win and a runoff. To those, I say unto to you that if the election turns out to be that close, consider it lost. Don’t forget we dealing with a more stubborn and dangerous individual who wields an AK-47 in the midst of suffering of powerless natural disaster victims! Now imagine if Kibaki and Odinga can unleash such carnage, what do you think YKM can do?
Kenya, since 1992 presents a good example of a fertile ground coalition building among major opposition parties. In all the elections since Moi embraced multiparty politics, the opposition always stood a chance to dislodge him out power if only they could unity. Disunity in the Kenyan political opposition kept Moi in power until he bowed out gracefully in 2002.  The presidential elections of 1992 when Moi bowed to multiparty politics had Moi (KANU) polling 36.4%, Kenneth Matiba (Ford-Asili) 26.0%, Mwai Kibaki (DP) 19.5%, Jaramogi Oginga Odinga (Ford-Kenya) 17.5%. The numbers were very agreeable to coalition building but the politics wasn’t and each went on its own in the 1997 elections. The 1997 elections had Moi emerge winner with 40.6% of the national vote while Mwa Kibaki (DP) polled 31.0%, Raila Odinga (NDP) 10.8%, Kijana Wamalwa (Ford-Kenya) 8.2%, Charity Ngilu (SDP) 7.9%. When finally the coalition materialized in 2002 in the name of National Rainbow Coalition, Mwa Kibaki garnered 61.3% of the vote and the former ruling party scrapped a miserable 20.2%. Of course, the election dynamics were greatly helped by the absence on the ballot of the Professor of Politics! The Kenyan opposition coalition succeeded because the separate individual parties had the strength that they previously failed to leverage. This cannot be said of the Ugandan opposition.
Kizza Besigye, will probably give YKM another run for his money but in the end (my prediction) the man who passed through the red furnace will emerge winner by means that we know so well. If by any chance, Kizza Besigye pulls off an Odinga or Tsvangirai, the political situation will probably be no different than in the countries of those respective gentlemen. The precedence of international community response to outright election rigging and its ensuing violence has been set.  Kizza Besigye is the only individual in position to pull these scenarios, for the simple reason that he has built political capital that the other opposition leaders lack! If you look at a number of countries where the opposition has taken power, the eventual winner is the man or woman who has stood for the presidency more than once. The list includes Abdoulaye Wade of Senegal, Mwa Kibaki of Kenya, Sirleaf Johnson of Liberia, Ernest Bai Koroma of Sierra Leone, Felix Patasse of Central African Republic, Tsvangirai of Zimbabwe and Odinga of Kenya came tantalizingly close on their second attempt.
The IPC is not beneficial, actually detrimental, to the future of the other political parties other than FDC. Political parties such as DP and UPC that once commanded a large and strong constituency, as a matter of urgency, need to focus on rebuilding and reconnecting with their former members, sympathizers and the young people. It is during elections when political parties gauge their strength and the efficiency and effectiveness of their message and programs. DP and UPC should not waste time with the IPC; they have more pressing issues to deal with and their future to build. As a matter of fact, these parties shouldn’t field presidential candidates, those resources could be used to restructure and rebuild themselves. Only, it is unfortunate and disappointing to see leaders of DP and UPC go around proclaiming how they will win the next elections! By what miracle will DP and UPC jump from their last showing at the polls with 1.58% and .82% respectively? What indicators have led them to this belief? Have they swept all the by-elections since 2006? Anyhow, I am working from the assumption that they are running to win!
G. Mugulusi

USA

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