Office of the Prime Minster letter to Red Pepper – “Re: Uganda is not Broke because of Pope Francis” (28.01.2016)
I write what I like.
Today is the first day of Presidential Elections rallies that has been harmonized with the Electoral Commission. The Camps or Parties has travelled around the country while one candidate still works with the commission to get a go to campaign. The ones that really seem to matter is the President Museveni in Luweero, Amama Mbabazi and People’s President Dr. Kizza Besigye in Rukungiri. And the best of all, this has been very peaceful and IGP Kale Kayihura has put his tear-gas and violent men to the side. It’s rare to see so little activity from the UPF and the peace that is at venues today. Hope this continues. Because its good to see the crowds, though we surely knows that certain levels of the NRM crowds are shipped there as the Crime Preventers are taking buses back and forth from venues to listen to Mzee. But enough of that! Let’s feel the flow of the day, start with the economic situation and then address the Elections as they have unfolded. The reports are not it all, not full speeches or such. But pieces and gist’s of what has been happening.
Before I go on the trails with the candidates and their trails, I will show a report from the Watchdog:
“A well-placed source at the Ministry of Finance has told Watchdog that President Museveni ordered the Ministry to arrange for him Shs500 billion. The source suspects the money is meant to fund Museveni’s campaigns. “He gave us only one week to look for the money and send it,” he said. The move came at the time some civil servants have not been paid for about three months. But that is not the sad bit. The Finance official told Watchdog website that the money had to be cut from various ministries” (Watchdog, 2015).
Money to MPs to be energized for the Elections:
“While asking NRM MPs to support the proposed amendments to the Public Finance law, the minister for planning, David Bahati, warned of a crisis in government, if Parliament rejects a new Bill that seeks to amend the current law to allow government, among other things, to borrow from Bank of Uganda. Daily Monitor broke the story when the Parliamentary Commission, secretly approved a 40 per cent pay rise for MPs and House staff, in a move the Clerk to Parliament, Ms Jane Kibirege said was intended to motivate members ahead of next year’s elections” (…)”However, Mr Bahati’s explanation according to sources did not go well with some senior legislators led by Mr Emmanuel Dombo (Bunyole East), who insisted that the Shs286.7b in the Contingency Fund went to State House and defence operations. Asked why government is broke, the Ministry of Finance Spokesperson, Jim Mugunga, said: “Government is not broke. Some ministries and government departments received more money in the budget.” (Mugerwa, 2015).
Car as an election gift to the Lamogi Clan Cheif from NRM:
You know there is election when there is big pledges and free stuff to the citizens. And the security agencies get new equipment and other material. The reports here says this:
“The Lamogi clan chief Martin Otinga Otto Yai Otuka has asked his subjects to vote for President Museveni in 2016 presidential polls, saying he has honoured pledges to develop the chiefdom. The chief made the remarks while speaking to residents at his home in Guru-guru village Lamogi Sub-county, Amuru District, while receiving a new Pajero donated to him by Mr Museveni on Friday” (Ocungi, 2015).
When reading about this money issue the President pledges this later today at the 2nd rally in Luweero:
“President Museveni has promised to increase funds for the National Agricultural Advisory Service (NAADs) to the tune of Shs1 trillion if Ugandans re-elect him in next year’s presidential elections.” (Monitor, 2015).
The FDC travelled in a Team today, they we’re Gen. Mugisha Muntu, SG Hon. Nathan Nandala-Mafabi, Spokesperson Hon. Ibrahim Nganda Ssemujju, Special Mobiliser Hon. Erias Lukwago, Hon. Amuriat, Hon. Otto Odonga, Fdc Chairman Waswa Birigwa, Shifrah Lukwago and Activists Gloria Paga and Moses Byamugyisha.
In Ntugamo town, people was lining up by the road with FDC signs. They had planted banana trees 10 kilometers from town and to the center of the town. At the FDC office in town Hon. Kataha was flashing the FDC sign and screaming “Kyahwa” transelated means “It’s finished”. In the same time even DP supports showed support for Dr. Kizza Besigye.
In Mbabara the town was in standstill because people wanted a view of Dr. Kizza Besigye. People were screaming and even woman was crying. People have been waiting in more areas for the FDC convoy in Mpigi, Masaka, Rwengo, Lyantonde and Rushere.
At the rally in town the first ones to address the rally were Wafula Oguttu and Ingrid Turinawe. After that Erias Lukwago has address them. After that Gen. Mugisha Muntu addressed the people. Then Dr. Kizza Besigye went up to the podium and the people went bananas. Quotes from his speech:
“Our children can’t study properly when the teachers are not properly remunerated”(…)”Our people are hoodwinked that they will be given Naads handouts and they keep walking up and down from and to Sub county offices” (…)”Why should government first extort money from citizens in form of high taxes and yet they can’t give services to the people?” (…)”Government will now begin to distribute Naada handouts since we are going in elections and you will find people thanking and praising government” (…)”If you have no power, you will never get better education or medical care” (…)”No meaningful jobs for youths when you have no power as citizens” (…)”When government over taxes you, it leaves you with no money or capital to use for production and development of yourself”.
Message from Kizza Besigye after the rally today:
“To the people of Rukungiri, inclusive of supporters of various political parties, I would like to extend my heart felt gratitude for the overwhelming turn up and the material support you have accorded to my candidature today” (…)“The spirit shown in Rukungiri, I believe will be the catalyst of the liberation of the entire country. The wave you have began will be unstoppable, from here on ‘as we move, many people will join us, we shall assign them duties and we shall build a force to break all the obstacles before us'”.
Reports from FDC Primaries:
“Anywar tears ballots papers for FDC primaries in Kitgum:
“I am the one who brought Besigye to Kitgum … Let him come here. Where is Besigye ?” Anywar fumed when she stormed the FDC meeting in Kitgum. She later left the office wailing”.
Just so you know:
In Busaana in Kayunga Professor Baryamureeba held a rally there today! Also was in Kamuli he held a public rally.
Abed Bwanika held his first election rally in Kamuli. There were more people at his rally it seems then at the Prof. Barya, but that is just my eyes I guess.
Statement from one of the Independent Coalition candidates:
Elton Joseph Mabirizi: “I love you all my supporters. Keep on supporting me and encourage others to join”, he Joseph Mabirizi says this and also Maureen Kyala is supposed to hold Election rally in Busoga today. Look forward to hear the reports from their rallies in Busoga when they come.
Maj Gen Benon Biraro is most likely not to hold his first rally today as he is still harmonizing his campaign schedule
Go-Forward Rally in Masaka:
Ssekasamba and the DPC has spent the whole last night supervising and determined to take down posters of Amama Mbabazi in the town. As the morning has come the Go-Forward team has put more up. The Go-Forward team has also paid for free boda-boda rides in Masaka town. The police are heavy deployed in town. The Police have also warned Go-Forward Presidential Candidate to have a procession through town from the Golf Grounds to center of town.
Amama Mbabazi on the road to Masaka where he got stopped got a special built chair and bananas by supporters.
Former NRM Masaka Municipality MP Shanon Kakungulu has deflected to Go-Forward today! There is also reports that 20 other members has deflected from NRM to Go-Forward as well, seems like many leaves the Yellow-Party.
To follow more up the Police and the NRM even had to have a function in the town as the Go-Forward Presidential candidate will arrive and have a rally later today. DP’s Norbert Mao has showed up to support Amama Mbabazi. There has also been set up some police barricades in town. So that Norbert Mao is stuck in a jam on the way to venue of the rally. He came to the venue and has been on stage with Vice Mukasa Mbidde and musician Big Eye. John Kawanga handed Amama Mbabazi a spear at the rally.
Amama Mbabazi message after the Rally:
“Thank you Masaka for turning up in big numbers to support the Go Forward campaign. We continue preaching the message of a Uganda that works for everyone”.
NRM Rally in Luweero:
There has been rumored that the President Museveni had a meeting and campaign rally in a town called Bamunanika. The People of the area were mad and screaming for all the promises that he has given and never kept. Also being mad at the how the Associates have taken land from them. He lost his speech and was stammering by the anger of the local residents.
The second rally was held on the Kasana Ground in Luweero. Where he asked the local electorate to: “me your grandfather”. At the Kasana Ground entered Kakooza Mutale!
Technology in this election:
Spokesman of the NRM Ofwono Opondo has proudly told the party has gotten themselves a call-center which was launched this morning and will call and reach up to 8 million voters during the election season. If that wasn’t enough Mzee has released his own election app and had help from an aide to get it to work on his own phone.
In Kabale there has been a Radio Panelist who first escaped from arrest after orders from the Resident District Commissioner Darius Naninda who tried to catch the Anti-Corruption Activist who was taking part of a show on the Kabala Freedom Radio (Mughisa, 2015). Later is seen that he has a warrant on inciting violence.
“The Southern Africa Litigation Centre (SALC) is deeply concerned about the safety of Ugandan refugees Musa Isabirye and Timothy Yamin who were deported to Uganda by Botswana Government last week. They have previously been active in opposition politics in Uganda and could face persecution, imprisonment or torture there. According to their legal representative Martin Dingake, “Their deportation took place in spite of a clear court order from the Botswana High Court interdicting such deportation. As a result the deportation is in flagrant contempt of the order of court and displays a shocking disregard by the Government of Botswana for the rule of law” (SALC, 2015).
In the External Security Organization there will be a reshuffle of four of the leaders on the top. Said to be an election switch. Also, one of the leaders who is Director General of this British which is kind of illegal in this matter; they are supposed to be Ugandan nationals.
“According to Airtel Uganda Corporate Social Responsibility Manager Mrs. Charity Bukenya, “Airtel Uganda has and will always welcome ideas that focus on empowerment of the youth, not only by providing them with better telecommunications solutions, but also by giving them opportunities to better their loves through the kind of exposure that AIESEC provides” (IT News Africa, 2015).
There will be more to come. This is what I have for now. Hope you got enlighten about what has happen. I don’t have all the clear reports at least some to give you a feel of what has gone down. There will be more to come. Since we’re just starting on the road to February polls! Peace.
Monitor – ‘Museveni to inject 1 trillion in NAADs’ (09.11.2015) link: http://www.monitor.co.ug/SpecialReports/Elections/Museveni-inject-trillion-NAADs/-/859108/2949484/-/8rjmx6z/-/index.html
Mugisha, Alex – ‘Drama as Kabale Radio Panelist escape arrest’ (09.11.2015) link: http://ugandaradionetwork.com/story/drama-as-kabale-radio-panelists-escape-arrest
Mugerwa, Yasiin – ‘Pension cash spent on MPs allowances’ (09.11.2015) link: http://www.monitor.co.ug/News/National/Pension-cash-spent-MPs-allowances/-/688334/2948430/-/vstkcjz/-/index.html
Ocungi, Julius – ‘Chief rallies for Museveni after car gift’ (09.11.2015) link: http://www.monitor.co.ug/News/National/Chief-rallies–Museveni-car-gift/-/688334/2948234/-/rt1x0r/-/index.html
IT News Africa – ‘Uganda: Airtel to take digital empowerment to Kyambogo University’ (09.11.2015) link: http://www.itnewsafrica.com/2015/11/uganda-airtel-to-take-digital-empowerment-to-kyambogo-university/
Southern Africa Litigation Centre – ‘Statement: SALC Condemns Deportation of Refugees from Botswana’ (09.11.2015) link: http://www.southernafricalitigationcentre.org/2015/11/09/statement-salc-condemns-deportation-of-refugees-from-botswana/
Watchdog – ‘MUSEVENI RAIDS SHS500 BILLION FROM TREASURY TO FUND CAMPAIGNS’ (09.11.2015) link: http://watchdog.co.ug/detail.php?id=559