Opinion: The UPM’s Aims and Objectives are grand, but did Museveni deliver them?
During the last few days, don’t remember when, but Moses Byamugisha on Social Media showed two pictures, which is a part of the Uganda Patriotic Movement (UPM) Membership Card from 1980. This is the first party of now President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni. It might seem as forgotten past, a past that we should just forgot, but I can’t, it is certain proof of important words and ideas, that still should be worked for. UPM and the agenda that Museveni worked for back-then. Is still worth doing today, even if President Museveni is just working for himself and his cronies. Not working for the betterment of society, that part of him is already gone.
I will first list of the ‘Aims and Objectives’ of the UPM Membership Card. Its 16 points, which seems like points, the Republic still needs and should work for.
3. National Independence
4. Social Progress
5. Clean Leadership
6. Peace, Security and tranquility
7. Rehabilitation and reconstruction of the nation
8. National Common Language
9. Workers and Peasants participation in the decisions making process of the Party and State machinery
10. Building of a proper defence and security systems
11. Encourage and sustain collective leadership
12. Create condition that will make every citizens have a right to education and medical care
13. Follow and adhere to a policy of a viable mixed autonomy for Uganda
14. Follow a policy of non alignment on a basis of mutual benefits and subscribe to OAU and UN Charters
15. Subscribe to the Basic Human Rights as enshrined in the UN Charter
16. Give moral and material support to the orphans and widows and other victims of the Fascist rule and liberation war
All of this was subtle and good ideas, needed ones that hasn’t lost their power or need. The Republic needs first aim Unity, not only hire and develop the Western parts of Uganda. Just like the troubles of just hiring people from the northern of Uganda under Obote and Amin. Therefore, this is still needed, as the Ankoli and areas around has gotten more and become more important, than the rest of the republic. Bunyoro is getting vital because of coming oil industry. Not because Museveni cares about it deeply.
Second aim, Democracy still needs to be worked upon. By all means because of the Life Presidency, enacted by the National Resistance Movement (NRM). The Second Party of the President, all follows his whip and is non-democratic from the choices of Members of Parliament and their votes. If they don’t follow orders, like voting for life presidency, then they will not only be labeled rebels, but also punished through the party organization. The NRM isn’t democratic, neither is the state. There are lacking democratic decision making and the elections are rigged. Its not the will of the people, but the will of Museveni.
The third aim, don’t need comments, but fourth and fifth needs it. The ‘Social Progress’ and ‘Clean Leadership’. Needs to be address, it is better then back in the day, but having three decades to advance. The NRM should have come much longer, than it has. The Social progress has not evolved, its only for a minority group. Biggest part of society is stagnated and falling behind with unemployment and lack of development. Clean leadership is long gone with Presidential Handshake, pay-off of Members of Parliament, misusing opposition parties and trading position because of loyalty and not merit. Therefore, the NRM have failed with perfection here.
Aim six and seven are questionable at best. ‘Peace, Security and Tranquility’. Peace they do have, but the security and tranquility, not so much. The Security Organizations are more criminal than thieves, they are killers and hired goons themselves. Police are investigated by CMI and UPDF. There are lacking lines and trust to the Courts. The Northern Uganda is done with civil war, but the army has still created uncertainty in Kasese and Rwenzori as they are battling their own. Killings are happening and unsolved by the authorities. Even assassinations of big men within the Security Organization themselves.
The aim eight, ‘National Common Language’ have been effective and worked, as English and Luganda is well-known and most can understand either one or both. The NRM has worked smoothly with this. One of the few things, the NRM actually has achieved. The Uglish is fantastic.
Aim nine, peasants and workers are not really a part of making decisions and taking part of the party. The decisions are made in the State House. It is made by the President and not by Party. The Party is a front and its only there so the President can pay-off his loyal allies. Its seemingly so, when the NRM-O and NRM CEC are made for his best interest. Not to create a better republic.
The tenth aim which is ‘build a proper defence and security systems’. The Military is at its strongest and used as hired mercenaries in Equatorial Guinea and doing United Nations missions in both Somalia and Central African Republic. Its also the main reason for still the current president. He uses the military, because he doesn’t have the popularity. The Security Systems are fragmented and used against each other. Using military intelligence against the police. There is nothing that is certain and you are boggled at how and when something strike. When a crime will be solved and by who.
The eleventh aim to ‘encourage and sustain collective leadership’ is at best questionable at this day and age. The NRM have clearly forgotten this one. They have maybe never worked for this after 1986. That he has talked against sectarian and tribal leadership is well-known, but his achievement is questionable. Since he hasn’t promoted collective leadership, he has promoted his own leadership and the ones loyalty to him without ambition. It is reason why Vice-President Ssekandi are still there and Prime Minister Rugunda are there. They don’t want to get at the king, but if they get ambition to succeed him. Then they get demoted. Check history and you’ll see this.
The twelfth aim for ‘universal education and public health care’. There many more schools under the NRM. Though they are not well-kept or the up-keep is worth mentioning. The literacy rate has been rising in the three decades of rule, but the school system is far from perfect. Since teachers in the districts has side jobs because of lacking salaries, girls skip schools over lacking pads. That was even promised in the General Election of 2016. Still, the NRM haven’t delivered. They promised UPE, but never totally delivered on that promise.
Health care is a place where people are left to die. That is why MPs are getting treatment abroad, the daughters of the President giving birth in Europe. The Health Care is abysmal, lacking medicine, copy medics, X-Rays not working and awaiting between 2013 to 2018 before buying and putting up a new Cancer-Treatment machine. Only one for the millions of citizens of the Republic. There been a blood-drive, because of lacking blood for treatments in the hospitals. The air-machines has gone empty like in Jinja. The NMS hasn’t been able to buy in needed equipment. The Health Care is something the NRM really haven’t delivered anything to be proud of. They have build some buildings called hospitals, but they cannot treat people’s illness there.
The thirteen aim is about autonomy, but that is delivered from the State House. There has been growing amount of districts 118 if my calculation is right. So there has been changes, but it hasn’t given service delivery. Neither or anything visible changes. It is more district centre and more cronies paid-off making the civil service bloated, but not delivering services to the public. So the NRM has delivered dozens of new district and local government entities, but not that they matter. They only matters to the ones who get a paycheck and who is “running” them. But not for the public.
The fourteenth aim is about taking part of African Union and United Nations, the fifteenth aim was also about following their international standards and laws. In the beginning of the NRM rule, as long as he was a part of the new breed of leadership. It was seemingly important to respect international laws and enact those standards. With time this has withered, as he wants to rule on own accord and not let anyone question his reasoning. Therefore, he has become hostile to foreign interference, the ICC and all other who can question his acts and his use of military in foreign countries. Because of the fear of the repression from foreign entities, the former love-affair has become hatred and that has been shown over time.
The sixteenth aim has been done in some instances, that someone has gotten land and gotten measly awards. The State haven’t made functional programs, but more public givings and sudden awards as part of public display together with honors at liberation celebrations. Not really trying to give funds and such. NRM Historicals of all kinds, NRA soldiers and familes, haven’t been compensated, neither has the losers. They have gotten retaliation. So there are many families in disarray and lost of promises.
The whole republic has seen all the empty promises and the prospects of the Museveni era. He has had 32 years to create a state in his vision. The UPM isn’t that far from the 10 Point Program, that I have also dismantled, actually twice.
This here is another proof of how he promise big, but doesn’t deliver. Don’t be surprised, he is all talking big game, but never showing it on the touchline. He might be in the box, but never score. Peace.