Opinion: Gen. Tumwine cannot intimidate death

The National Resistance Movement and National Resistance Army General Elly Tumwine cannot run away from the past or the present. There is a reason why people are celebrating your death and wishing you dead. That’s because of the choices you did while in power and in office. It isn’t like Gen. Tumwine is innocent or a choir-boy. We all know what sort of man he was and that’s why people are addressing their grievances.

Gen. Tumwine won’t be fondly remembered by plenty. That’s his legacy and the career that he built. No matter what sort of sacrifices he did in the Bush. The generations after that didn’t eat out of that. Except for a small marginalized click of NRA fighters and the anointed people around the President. Therefore, Tumwine can be praised by those, because he kept the NRM alive, but not serving the people.

Gen. Tumwine was on Thursday flown to Nairobi, Kenya in critical condition. After rumours of his death yesterday on Saturday. We don’t know how his condition or sickness for that matter. He has to be ill to be flown out and not getting treatment in Kampala. That’s why the state has offered this and made it possible for him. A sort of service and option that the average citizen would never see or have ability to do.

The General knows perfectly well what he did and the lives his taken. That is something he knows. Both as an army commander, Minister of Security and all the other roles he had in government. Tumwine has played a vital role in the security apparatus and he has had no scruples. That’s why he blocked MPs to have oversight of “Safe-Houses”, using soldiers to quell to demonstrators and all other measures to be in power. Therefore, his life work has been surrounded by terror and death.

He has chosen to intimidate and scare. The weapons, the soldiers and the use of torture to get his ways. Gen. Tumwine has used this and spelled out it a lot of times. He has acted above the law and been practically the law in flesh. Now, his meeting the one thing he cannot overpower, which is ageing and health.

Gen. Tumwine and the family might want sympathy. However, the General never shown that to the dissidents, the rioters or the ones fallen. No, he has expected total retribution and demise of the ones in his way. This man haven’t served with concern of life or worried about using lethal means. No, that’s been his code. So, a man like that is hard to give any sympathy too. His made this bed and he got to sleep in it.

That Tumwine is on life-support at Aga Khan in Nairobi says it all. He did his whole defend a government and a system, which couldn’t help him when he needed the most back-home. The man who was UPDF MP in Parliament for ages. A former Minister for Security and all the other roles served. Certainly, he could have offered and made amends while in office. However, he chose to be a Freedom Fighter and be a loyalist of the NRM.

This is why Gen. Tumwine is paying the price now. His part of “them” and the ones who has enforced brutality, torture and extra judicial killings. As a leader and as a man who choose to do this and that’s why people will not shed tears for his demise. Because, people know people who has been touched by his orders. The system he was part of and he could easily order death. That’s why people will not sorrow when his day comes.

Gen. Tumwine and family might want him to be remembered as a legend or bush war hero. However, the innocent lives on his record will stain him forever. The lives that he has shattered, the families he has broken, that will linger on and be part of his legacy. This was choices he made and prospered while doing so. It isn’t like he couldn’t have changed path or decided differently. Everyone can take a moral stance or consider their actions. However, he choose to get people abducted, use safe-houses, order soldiers onto the streets and use lethal force against civilians. That’s the sort of man he was and that he cannot run away.

He cannot run away from that, not even in death. Since that’s what he did as a living and a man in power. The General could have done it differently, but that wasn’t his character. People are celebrating his demise, because he ordered the demise of others. That’s why he will not be fondly remembered by everyone. He might have been a good father, a great grandparent and a family man. However, that doesn’t change the blood that is on his hands. That they cannot erase or get us to forget. Peace.

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