MinBane

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Archive for the tag “Bukedi”

New Study Finds Worrying Climate Trend in Karamoja Over Last 35 Years (20.03.2017)

Released in Kampala today, the ‘Impacts of Climate Change on Food Security and Livelihoods in Karamoja’ found that temperatures have been rising in Karamoja over the last 35 years.

KAMPALA, Uganda, March 20, 2017 – A new study carried out by the Government of Uganda and its partners has found a new weather pattern that threatens to worsen food insecurity in the Karamoja region if no action is taken.

The study found that the average monthly rainfall in the region increased over the last 35 years and that the rainy season is now longer by two months. However, the rains – which now fall from around March to the end of the year – increasingly varied in volumes. This unpredictability was found to undermine agricultural production, thereby threatening to aggravate food insecurity in Karamoja.

Released in Kampala today, the ‘Impacts of Climate Change on Food Security and Livelihoods in Karamoja’ found that temperatures have been rising in Karamoja over the last 35 years.

The rising temperatures threaten to increase the frequency, intensity and duration of heat waves in the region, therefore reducing availability of water for crops and animals. This too undermines food security.

A large majority of people in Karamoja, particularly women, were not aware that changes to the climate had been taking place over decades, the study states. However, most of the people that had perceived changes to the climate had not taken any action to adapt, typically because they did not know how to do so. Where trees were planted as an adaptation measure, the sale of charcoal and firewood were also a common measure that people took in response to climate-related crop failure.

Sponsored by the Swedish Government, the study was carried out in 2016 by the Ministry of Water and Environment with support from the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) and the CGIAR Consortium’s Research Programme on Climate Change, Agriculture and Food Security.

The Uganda Minister for Water and Environment, Sam Cheptoris, said today, “These are significant findings that threaten any hope for Uganda achieving its Vision 2040 and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), if no immediate action is taken.”

Cheptoris said that his Ministry was already calling for a national and regional response, advocating for climate change sensitive approaches across all Government sectors, educating the population about climate change, and undertaking emissions profiles.

“Karamoja’s population is heavily dependent on rain-fed agriculture, which is highly vulnerable to climate change,” said El Khidir Daloum, WFP Country Director for Uganda. “However, little has been known previously about the impacts of climate change on food security, and in particular, the ability of households in the region to adapt.”

WFP hopes that the findings and recommendations of the study will contribute to efforts toward appropriate adaptation measures while helping to identify policies that will safeguard the most vulnerable communities in Karamoja.

The study recommended that the Government and its partners increase investments in water harvesting and agroforestry schemes, education of the people, improved access to climate change information and the cultivation of drought-resistant crop varieties.

Within the Ministry of Water and Environment, the study was carried out by the Climate Change Department and the Uganda National Meteorological Authority.

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Mzee said today: ‘We cannot have famine in Uganda’, well apparently you do!

This morning, H.E. Yoweri Kaguta Museveni commissioned Dokolo water supply system. (National Water and Sewerage Corporation – NWSC)

Well, President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni is apparently controlling the weather and steering the sun. However, the President doesn’t have those powers; he could have already built in systems that took care of water in the raining seasons and other irrigation schemes. This is special to hear, since he has been running the Republic for thirty years. That should be well known in the humid climate of Uganda. Well, here are parts of his speech in Dokolo on the International Woman’s Day!

“We cannot have famine in Uganda; that will not happen, even if it means diverting resources from other departments. We will do so although this will stop progress of key projects.” (…) “This little scare is good because it has waked us up to look at irrigation” (…) “As of now I have directed government departments to start working on solar powered pumps for irrigation and we have already experimented in some areas” (AYFAP, 2017).

Because the President Museveni cannot have listen well to Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS Net) who in their February 2017 edition wrote this about Uganda:

During the February to June lean season, very poor households in Moroto and Napak are expected to face food consumption gaps and be in Crisis (IPC Phase 3). In these areas, poorly distributed rainfall led to below-average production and very poor households depleted food stocks three months earlier than normal. Many are facing increasing difficulty purchasing sufficient food to meet their basic needs, as food prices are 30-40 percent above average. Food security is expected to improve to Stressed (IPC Phase 2) in July with the green harvest” (…) “Pasture conditions and water resources in the cattle corridor are expected to remain below average through March due to above-average land surface temperatures. Conditions are likely to improve to near normal levels in April, alongside average seasonal rainfall. Conditions will then seasonally decline from June through September. Livestock body conditions and milk productivity are expected to follow the same trend” (FEWS Net, February 2017).

So the international body that follows the possible outbreaks of famine and early warnings is saying continued struggles in Karamoja and the cattle corridor of Isingiro. Even if the President is claiming there shouldn’t be trouble or a crisis. Because Museveni himself saying there cannot be famine in Uganda, still, it is not much his government of three decades has done to curb the problem. His government has not thought of technics of keeping water and irrigate the soil. Not too long ago he spent time and used jerry-cans and bicycle to irrigate the soil, which cannot be the solution for the lack of water in Karamoja or in Isingiro.

Back in 2011 to international media the President seemed to have a plan:
“The Ugandan government, according to Museveni, now plans to “exploit the potential of Karamoja”, a move which is expected to involve offering large tracts of Karamoja land to foreign corporations to grow biofuels, as well as designating more “conservation” and mining areas. This, say critics, will only increase conflict and hunger, force more young people to move into cities, and will destroy a rich way of life that has proved resilient and economically viable” (Vidal, 2011).

So 6 years later and new famine in the Karamoja, the plans of 2011 seems like they are hurting like the critics did say. So, the new plans might cause more havoc on the embattled people of Northern Uganda.

Therefore in his own making he has destroyed the livelihood and other issues in these volatile areas. The ones in Isingiro is different, as the pastoral and the cattle corridor, Seemingly, the Ugandan Republican can have famine, it is just President Museveni and his regime who cannot control or having the mechanism to contain it. They do not have the means or efforts to help the ones in need more than a few PR scoops of trucks and meals.

So President Museveni needs guidance and needs an incentive to earn on it. If so than this problems would be fixed, if there we’re some sort of scam or program that could be used so the people could get something and he could eat of their plate. If so, the irrigation scheme would be in place and the people wouldn’t starve. So please, conning people who cares about the famine in Uganda give a way for the petty thief to steal little some and people can get some. Peace.

Reference:

African Youth Forum against Poverty (AYFAP) – ‘Famine Scare is Good, Says Museveni’ (08.03.2017) link: http://www.ayfapuc.org/index.php/2017/03/08/famine-scare-is-good-says-museveni/

FEWS NET – ‘Stressed (IPC Phase 2) outcomes likely to persist in bimodal areas until June harvest’ (February 2017) link: http://www.fews.net/east-africa/uganda/food-security-outlook/february-2017

Vidal, John – ‘Uganda: nomads face an attack on their way of life’ (27.11.2011) link: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2011/nov/27/uganda-nomad-farmers-climate-change

Opinion: Democratic Party and Uganda People’s Congress turns more and more into NRM-Lite!

Akena M7

“Power is a curious thing. Who lives, Who dies. Power resides where men believe it resides. It is a trick, A shadow on the wall.”  ― Lord Varys (Game of Thrones).

Adjective: Denoting a low-fat or low-sugar version of a manufactured food or drink product” (…) “Origin: 1950s: a commercial respelling of light, light” (Oxford Dictionary – Lite).

This here isn’t something based on evidence, but more a genuine feeling I have is not only one I share, but many others. There is something at stake and someone who has agreed the negotiations so these so-called opposition parties isn’t really so. That is why the Uganda People Congress has some MPs in the Cabinet and the same with Democratic Party. The same can be said that both of these parties, still have slots or parts of the delegations to the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA) in Arusha.

What we do know is that James Akena, the newly concurred leader of UPC could easily do some trade-off with NRM in 2015. That isn’t just mere speculation as his party did decent and there haven’t been any controversy or lashing out from NRM MPs towards the UPC in ages. Secondly, the DP has become the good DPs and the ones that even are parts of NRM Celebrations. There is something up with these two parties, just like Uganda Federal Alliance and Beti Kamya all of a sudden is a bigger support of the NRM government than the former NRM historical’s and the NRM hardliners.

The President and his NRM CEC must see their State House visits as a blessed and ease ways of figuring out how to undress the opposition and how to deal with them. All needs a meal-ticket, the question is who will give in to the regime and at what cost. Therefore, the arrangement and the deals behind the close doors show the conning way of the illegitimate regime who uses all sorts of methods to undermine the opposition. The FDC has clearly given in too, in my book, with even becoming the shadow-government in Parliament. Something the FDC NEC shouldn’t have considered and agreed upon, because when NRM together with the President agreed to get a UPC minister and DP minister, it would be hard to have shadow-government with members from these parties. That would be rare and weird to explain.

DP Mao

We can even wonder if Norbert Mao even cared of losing his slot as Member of Parliament in the 10th Parliament, as the DP was behind Amama Mbabazi Presidential Candidate through the The Democratic Alliance (TDA). Why I say that now? Since he is snickering and defending the NRM on NBSFrontline, attacking Lord Mayor Lukwago and the FDC when he can, just as we would expect Akena, since he has been bought sometime during the 2015. The price and the value of the UPC is for him and his closest allies to know.

DP’s Mao on the other hand is worrying, that Fred Mukasa Mbidde went so easily and elected into the EALA, also how little care the DP has given to the DP Cabinet Member Florence Nakiwala. Who could have thought the party would trade these folks that easily? That without any worry and without care has let it go, that they have set the standard of being a mediocre party who has no courage and no fighting spirit.

Maybe, Mao has gotten tired of fighting as the campaign he himself has a Presidential Candidate was sour, it wasn’t a joyful journey as the promises and the ride against the police force wasn’t ideal. Therefore, the battle even for his own MPs place got lost and as a leader who isn’t in Parliament, while the ones in Parliament are getting cosy with the NRM. That might be why Mao is complied with the forged friendships and trading in Parliament, to make sure they can gain the most. Still, the value and integrity of DP is dwindling, with every forged agreement with NRM makes them more and more alike, less different.

The NRM regime and NRM caucus in Parliament is adding DP and UPC, they are just turning into branches of the regime instead of being rooted on their own and on their own framework. It is just like Mao and Akena, just shift-bosses instead of being their own factory leaders. They work less for their own product and delivery, more and more to please the Executive through agreements and negotiations.

That is why the NRM has swallowed their paths and the lacking spine of DP and UPC has given way for this. Therefore, the current affairs and state makes them like a light version of the NRM. For this reason DP = NRM Lite and UPC = NRM Lite. Both parties are old and have a long history; they were established long before NRM, still the abolishment from Obote, made the other obsolete. So Museveni’s trick of being in the shadows of these parties before and after the parties, this is essentially killing of the multi-party system. That the NRM are tarnishing the DP and UPC to becoming NRM knocks-offs.

NRM UPC Arua 16.11.15

All of this is mere speculation, but still, there aren’t any official agreements in public between UPC and DP towards to the NRM, but their friendliness and co-operations are evident of certain negotiated deals. You will not hear Akena or the UPC complain about the NRM, just like Mao suddenly defends on national TV their position towards NRM and attacks Lukwago. There is just some uncertainty of how and what they have done behind closed doors. Beyond a shadow of a doubt some worrying signs that can and should be questioned, especially not accept as the acceptance of these parties to the NRM gives way to establish deep concerns of the value of opposition at all in Uganda. Since the DP and UPC have been thresholds for such, now it is FDC, even with a FDC NEC who doesn’t concern their legitimising the Parliament.

We all should ask and question the recent efforts from DP and UPC as legitimate opposition, even as parties without connections or how possibly they have accepted agreements with Movement. This surpass the judgement and the recognition of their existence, it is more the mere fact of lacking attention to transparency and accountability, as they are giving way to a regime who certainly does not care about procedures or acts or rule of law. The parties are therefore giving the Movement acceptance and are silently supporting their rule with these sorts of acts. Certainly, something the founders of these parties would turn in their graves and wanted to resurrect to adjust the malfunctions of these parties. Peace.

Food Insecurity still high in Uganda

uganda-feeding

There are certain aspects of governance that is still weak in Uganda, as the Food Insecurity in major parts of the Republic is still high. The knowledge of the Famine and lacking food in big regions of the Cattle Corridor and Northern Uganda; the pastoral areas have been hit hard after the El Nino and the draught. This has left many small-farmers behind and left their crop to die on the fields. This as the lacking irrigation and building of proper wells has also stopped the constant use of water. Therefore what the Hon. Vincent Bamulangaki Ssempijja, the Minister of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries has some words to say. Here are the important aspects of the findings of the Ministry and how the lacking levels of food is reported from him.

Falling Crop Levels:

“The Food Security Analysis done by MAAIF in collaboration with other stakeholders in July 2016 indicated that at national level, the country experienced an average crop loss of approximately 40% for pulses (beans, groundnuts, peas) and 80% for cereals (maize, millet, rice, sorghum) from the first season harvests. The most affected crop was maize”(Ssempijja, P2, 2017).

Food Crisis:

“Colleagues the latest Food Security situation (2nd November, 2016) that was a result of rigorous scientific analysis indicated that the most affected areas are the districts that lie in the cattle corridor, stretching from North Eastern up to South-Western Uganda. This information was later confirmed by the follow up of the National Food Security Awareness Campaign that was undertaken by Inter-ministerial teams led by Cabinet ministers and/or Ministers of State and coordinated by the Prime Minister in late November 2016. The sub regions of Karamoja, Teso, Lango, Acholi, Bukedi, West Nile, Parts of Busoga and most districts along the Cattle Corridor including lsingiro, Kiruhura, Rakai, Ssembabule witnessed massive crop failure, leading to little or no harvest. This has resulted into the food crisis we are experiencing” (Ssempijja, P: 3, 2017).

Market Price on Food on the rise:

Harvests of cereals, Matooke, bananas, cassava, sweet potatoes, Irish potatoes and beans are on markets but the supply is low and the demand both domestically and regionally (Rwanda, Kenya, Burundi, Southern Sudan, DRC-Congo, Tanzania, and Central African Republic) is high. Market prices for all food commodities have increased” (Ssempijja, P: 3, 2017).

Current affected areas with mass food insecurity:

“The current estimates however, indicate that 25% of the population in lsingiro District are in an emergency phase of food insecurity; meaning they access half a meal or nothing at all in a day” (…) “65% of the population in Karomoja sub region are in a crisis phase of food insecurity; meaning they access one meal or half a meal in a day” (…) “35% of the population in the districts of Katakwi, Amuria, Kumi, Bukedia, parts of Serere and Kaberamaido are in the same phase with Karamoja sub region (Crisis); meaning they access one meal or half a meal in a day” (…) “50% of the people of Koboko, Yumbe, Moyo, Maracha, Arua, Zombo.Nebbi, Adjumani, Amuru, Nwoya, Gulu, Pader, Lamwo, Kitgum, Agago, Soroti, Ngora, Amolatar, Pallisa, Buteleja, Rakai, lsingiro and Tororo are in a stressed pahse of food insecurity; meaning they access one and half meals in a day” (…) “the total population that was in need of relief food, as of November, 2016 stood at about 1,300,000 people (the sub regions of Karamoja, Teso , Lango, Acholi, Bukedi, West Nile, Parts of Busoga, lsingiro, Bukomansimbi, and Kalungu)” (Ssempijja, P: 5, 2017).

Allocated funds to Food Security:

“Note the need to continue providing Food relief by the Ministry of Disaster preparedness costed at 52.65 billion to the affected families, this was already alluded to by the District Local governments during the recently concluded food security awareness campaigns” (…) “Note the need to re-allocate and frontload funds from the NAADS Secretariat/OWe equivalent to UGX 26.63 Billion to avail quick maturing food security planting materials such as: maize, beans, cow peas, cassava and banana suckers to rehabilitate destroyed plantations (especially to farmers in lsingiro district) in season one of 2017 as soon as the rains are established” (Ssempijja, P: 9, 2017).

The regions that are hit says a lot of the lacking resources and the government programs that are supposed to control, the worst hit areas are still in Isingiro and Karamoja regions. The other ones those are also hit, but not as bad in Katakwi, Amuria, Kumi, Bukedia, Serere and Kaberamaido. These shows the level of food insecurity, but the final number dropped from the Minister shows the amount of people who are need of food relief, they we’re 1,300,000 people. That is the people of the Republic. This is happening as the food prices are souring as the food insecurity is happening in the nations around Uganda. So they are not in a secure vacuum, the need of food relief around Uganda is also growing.

Therefore the draught and death of the pastoral farming is showing the lack of government support to crisis. Certainly there are needed allocations and institutions to bring the needed relief and also revive the agricultural use of water and also systems to secure the citizens. This is what the Ugandan Government is missing. To keep food stocks and secure that the citizens, the farmers are sufficiently harvesting and securing their fields for any sort of changes. Peace.

Reference:

Ssempijja, Vincent Bamulangaki – ‘Statement on the Food Security Situation in the Country’ (09.01.2017)

My take on the CEON-U January 2016 Report: “There is a need for the state to provide equal facilitation to all parties, to empower them conduct their campaigns on a level ground”.

Topowa Vote

Here is what I found that was important to take from the Citizens Election Observations Network of Uganda (CEON-U) report of pre-election report of January 2016. This here is the second report from Civil Society Organization on the time before the General Election starting 18th February 2016. Most of this I have described piece by piece. I will not take all of the graphics, you should read it yourself as well, but if you don’t have the time. Here is what I see as the important information from the report as the CEON-U has stated. Though it coming in the end of the campaign trail, so the changes they want is most likely not arriving before next election. Right, therefore here is the finding they have found. First: “There is a need for the state to provide equal facilitation to all parties, to empower them conduct their campaigns on a level ground” (P: 4, 2016).

About Dialogue – Inter-Party Liason Committees:
“Majority of LTOs reported that they had not seen or heard of any inter-party liaison committees in their constituencies. At least 89% of LTOs reported that they had no inter-party liaison committees in their constituencies, and at most 97% during this period” (P: 5, 2016).

Uganda-Electoral-Commission

Voter Information:
“With a few days left to the polls, 23% of constituencies that are observed by CEON-U had not reported any voter information by the Electoral Commission by 18th January 2016. This has been observed across regions where observation is taking place. Up to this day, the majority of voters are not clear about the voter identification process. The issue of National Identity cards vs the voter’s card is yet to be resolved” (P: 8, 2016).

Campaigns:
Defacing Campaign posters:
“For FDC, defaced presidential posters were more prevalent compared to parliamentary posters. The percentage of observers reporting defaced FDC posters ranged from 9% to 21% during this period. For Go Forward the percentage of observers reporting defaced posters ranged from 6% to 26% during this period” (P: 11, 2016). “NRM defaced posters was highest in Bukedi, followed by Buganda, Bunyoro and Kigezi” (P: 12, 2016). While FDC defaced posters were mostly observed in Bukedi, Teso and West Nile” (…)”And Go Forward defaced posters was highest in Kigezi, Teso and West Nile” (P: 13, 2016).

Conducting Campaigns after 6PM:
“Contrary to EC regulations, CEON-U observer reports indicate that presidential candidates from FDC, Go Forward and NRM have in some cases conducted campaigns after 6pm” (P: 13, 2016).

Campaigning after 6PM Uganda Nov-Jan

Election Violence and Hate-Speech:
“In week 6, which covered the period 16th to 22nd November 2015, in Nyabushozi County a counselor of Kanyaryeru division in Kiruhura district, on 26th November 2015, used hate speech against presidential candidate Amama Mbabazi when he alleged that he killed Nobel Mayombo and so people should not elect him to presidency because he is a murderer. And because Amama is a murderer he cannot be trusted to be president of Uganda. Still in week 6, while on a rally at Butaleja, Busolwe sub-county in Bunyole west constituency, on 19th November 2015, the voters called Besigye a liar who had no ability to deliver on the promises he was making. They said he was no better than Museveni because he is also corrupt” (P: 14, 2016).

This here puts the things in motion and also how the systematic actions have been during the days of the campaigns. Though compared to the economic campaign report, this here was very simplistic and easy read through; therefore I could compile the information quickly. This here is just a basic information for those who haven’t had an eagle eye on the elections, like the European Union Election Observations Monitoring team and COMESA who arrived in darkness and should see some of the numbers; so they know what they come into. As the sweet-talking IGP Kale Kayihura can really talk the white man into peace and blow smoke up his ass. We all know what the police does towards the Opposition, as seen in recent days.

And with the little voter information at this stage is worrying as we are in final stages of the race and campaign trail. There is something rare about it. CEON-U has done something important explaining the issue of missing voter information. That is something the Electoral Commission should work on of facilitate with the NGO who is behind the #Topowa campaign as they can explain the voters and information with passion, something Dr. Badru Kiggundu in the EC does not have. It is even hard to see him really smile to camera, think it was ages since he enjoyed his work and job. Therefore he should hire Citizens Coalition for Electoral Democracy in Uganda (CCEDU) with their #Topowa to get the message out. Though I don’t think Badru Kiggundu has the balls, stamina or independent mind to evolve and trust in CCEDU, as they are not loyal NRM cronies as themselves. Therefore this will not happen, but if they could travel around in the villages and major towns with their CSO/NGO machinery then they would have dropped the bomb of information on how to “honor your vote” which is basic and should be in the veins of the citizens. Something the NRM doesn’t seem to want to deliver to the public. Because they fear that won’t vote for them, and that is why they don’t educate them to vote, as that will contridict their usual message of fear, as they themselves fear their own citizens and their will. 

Peace.

Reference:
Citizens Election Observers Network Uganda (CEON-U) – ‘Pre-election Observation Report’ (January 2016)

Weird team-up between UPC and NRM; getting crazier by the moment; beating history

Akena M7

There has been talking of a weird marriage in Uganda. Therefore I have to address it. First by the history between these parties, the parties I talk about are the National Resistance Movement (NRM) and the Uganda People’s Congress (UPC). There has been rifts between the and that for several reasons. It started decades ago. Decades ago between people who is gone and the still sole-candidate of the NRM then NRA. NRM got help to reach power by collaborating with UPC and their then leader Milton Obote. That is history that has vanished from the surface. If it wasn’t from the okay from Julius Nyerere the leaders wouldn’t have toppled the then dictator Idi Amin. But this story here isn’t about that marriage between them. It’s about the recent events happening in the last two days. Firstly I will address certain history and also pointers from the President Musveni himself. Then secondly see more narrow history and events that shows how strange it is to see UPC goes in talks with NRM. That NRM and President Museveni actually thinking of it, is countering everything for why they went against in 1980s and defiance against them in 1990s.

m7-1970

History – UPC and NRM:

“Museveni’s decision to fight the newly elected government followed that of former Amin soldiers who had already regrouped in the then Zaïre and southern Sudan and were executing a low-intensity insurgency involving sporadic incursions into the West Nile region” (…)”Following his decision, other fighting groups emerged, also seeking to topple the new government. Lack of organisational capacity for some, and for others failure to articulate a broad political agenda beyond simply toppling Obote, prevented them from developing into effective military threats to the government. However, owing in large part to experience gained from its predecessor FRONASA, Museveni’s National Resistance” (…)”Movement evolved into a broad-based movement able to galvanise a wide cross-section of society behind it. Several attempts at forming a broad united front failed (Bwengye 1985)” (Golooba-Mutebi, 2008).

“The 1980 controversial elections, organized on the multiparty basis, failed to produce a clear winner, sparking off another wave of instability and civil strife. Between 1981 and 1986, the country suffered a guerilla war fought by a National Resistance Army (NRA), spearheaded by Yoweri Museveni. The guerilla war partly failed Obote’s second Uganda People’s Congress (UPC) government efforts to return the country to normalcy”(…)” In the 1980’s parties existed but their members were constantly harassed, in many cases accused to be alleged collaborators with the National Resistance Movement (NRA) that fought in the UPC government. Despite these extraordinary constraints, parties remained resilient in Uganda’s politics. This disapproves the claim by Museveni that parties are only good for industrial societies (Museveni 1992)” (Makara, 2010).

“Consequently, the December 1980 elections were held under a tense atmosphere of considerable controversy, mistrust, political violence and threats of civil war. The UPC government which came to power after the elections was therefore faced with a crisis of legitimacy. In February 1981, Yoweri Museveni who had threatened to ‘go to the bush’ and wage war if the elections were rigged, launched a guerrilla war against the UPC government” (Omach).

“The National Resistance Movement (NRM) is a movement to resist UPC or what UPC stands for, i.e. national-democratic liberation. The earliest incidence of this resistance is given to us by none other than the founder of the NRM, Yoweri Museveni” (Adhola)

He recounts:

“We were staunchly anti-Obote. On 22 February 1966, the day he arrested five members of his cabinet, three of us, Martin Mwesigwa, Eriya Kategaya and myself went to see James Kahigiriza, who was the Chief Minister of Ankole, to inquire about the possibility of going into exile to launch an armed struggle. Kahigiriza discouraged us, saying that we should give Obote enough time to fall by his own mistakes. We saw him again a few weeks later and he gave us the example of Nkrumah, who had been overthrown in Ghana by a military coup two days after Obote’s abrogation of the Uganda constitution. Kahigiriza advised us that Nkrumah’s example showed that all dictators were bound to fall in due course. Inwardly we were not convinced. We knew that dictators had to be actively opposed and that they would not just fall off by themselves like ripe mangoes. Later I went to Gayaza High School with Mwesigwa to contact Grace Ibingira’s sister in order to find out whether she knew of any plans afoot to resist Obote’s dictatorship. She, however, did not know of any such plan. We came to the conclusion that the old guard had no conception of defending people’s rights and we resolved to strike on our own (Museveni, Y. 1997:19)” (Adhola).

NRA M7

Some more NRM – UPC:

The national-democratic forces made great gains in the struggles of the mid-60s. The war the NRM waged has simply served the reactionary forces. Upon coming to power, Museveni immediately moved against his most serious enemy, the Uganda Peoples’ Congress. His aim was to completely obliterate UPC. To this effect, immediately upon coming to power, the NRM decreed, through Legal Notice Number 1/1986, a ban on political parties. This ban was rationalised through a series of assertions that amounted to irrational reasoning” (Adhola).

Recent history:

“The NRA/M used scaremonger tactics to sow seeds of discord and undermine support for Paul Ssemogerere in the southern part of Uganda. Paul Ssemogerere’s alliance with the Uganda Peoples Congress (UPC) and his statement that he would not oppose return to Uganda of former President Milton Obote, were used by the NRM to scare people from voting for him. Thus instead of using democratic elections to resolve conflicts, the NRM leadership used the elections to entrench the north-south divide and to maintain the southern consensus on which it relies to remain in power. The results of the presidential elections reflected the regional north-south divide. Thus, although Yoweri Museveni won the presidential elections with about 75 per cent, he lost by a wide margin in war ravaged northern Uganda. The same voting pattern was repeated during the 2001 and 2006 elections, which indicated a deepening of the north-south rift” (Omach).

Milton Obote statement in 1990:

“My 1987 Paper is now a “prohibited document” in Uganda and Kagenda Atwoki, the Administrative Secretary of the Uganda Peoples Congress (UPC) is now on trial for being in possession of it. Atwoki had been reported by the BBC as having said that Museveni’s well known wars were wars by the regime against the people. He was arrested and detained but was later charged with “being in possession of a prohibited document” despite the fact that the Paper had never, to date, been gazetted as “prohibited” in accordance with the Uganda law of sedition. Atwoki remains charged illegally but the real reason for his suffering is because he dared to expose Museveni’s massacres” (…)”he ban on political activities applies only to the UPC. The definitive political target of Museveni’s National Resistance Movement (NRM) and its armed core the NRA is the “Removal of UPC/Obote’s dictatorship by force of arms”. The document was issued in 1987. Having observed the DP leaders at close quarters throughout 1986 as members of his Cabinet, I have confirmed that the NRM/NRA and the DP had one common target: the destruction of the UPC, not by the ballot but by force. Having found that the DP was, so to speak, a toothless bulldog, Museveni ordered the production of Appendix One in 1987. The destruction of the DP is in Paragraph 3.3 of that document but even that fact has not diminished the attachment of the DP leaders to Museveni’s regime” (…)”After he had overthrown the Okello Junta, Museveni wasted no time in ordering an onslaught onto members of the UPC throughout Uganda especially in the Eastern Region. As an excuse to kill, arrest and beat, terrorize and brutalize UPC members in Busoga, Bukedi, Bugisu, and Sebei, Museveni’s functionaries invented what they called “Force Obote Back Again” (FOBA) Movement. No such movement ever existed but thousands of UPC members were killed, arrested and detained, terrorized and brutalized for allegedly belonging to it. It is a sad commentary that the DP leaders and members not only gleefully welcomed but also assisted the NRA in the persecution of UPC members. Today, the ordeal covers and affects all in the East and North irrespective of Party affiliations; and as their members groan and die together, of course with UPC members, Ssemogerere and other leaders of the DP see nothing untoward with Museveni’s regime. Being a Minister in Museveni’s regime would appear to them to be of greater importance than the groans and deaths of thousands upon thousands of fellow citizens” (Obote, 1990).

Press release from 2001:

“The rampant and wanton intimidation, abduction, killing and deliberate and ferocious, installation of a sense of fear in the minds of the citizens perpetuated by the armed supporters of Lt. Gen. Yoweri Kaguta Museveni. Museveni’s record of killings is recorded in the districts of Luwero triangle where he supervised the murder of most UPC leaders, chiefs and supporters and hid them in mass graves. He later commissioned Capt. Zizinga to exhume their skulls and parade them as victims of the UNLA. He has recently stated his intention to continue displaying the skulls in Luwero perhaps to permanently remind Ugandans and the world of his exploits” (…)”Instead of sorting out the political mess that he has created in Uganda, he has resorted to misinformation. He has again tried to drag UPC and its leader Milton Obote in his problems. On the occasion of opening the Workers House Museveni was at it again. He claimed that UPC took workers money to build Uganda House” (…)”UPC is not a body corporate and does not own Uganda House. In the Consent Judgment signed by Museveni’s government and MOF, the owner of the house is clearly stated to be MOF” (…)”All lawful and peaceful avenues to challenge the illegitimate actions of the monolithic regime as UPC has always advocated have now been closed and all indications are that as a last resort survival strategy the people of Uganda may resort to violent and illegal actions to restore Uganda to constitutional order and to stop further political disintegration. Since UPC is debarred from organising at the grassroot level, it is not in a position to dissuade or deter any persons who may be driven to take the violent or illegal path” (UPC, 2001).

This here has been the historical part between them. I will now bring recent events in the UPC to show the frictions and weakness of it. To prove how volatile it is and wonder what argument the leadership of UPC has to support and make a coalition with NRM, instead of the other opposition parties in the The Democratic Alliance with the likes of JEEMA, UFA; DP, PPP and FDC.

So let’s see something in narrow history that gives the fractions growing in the UPC:

In 2011:

“Yesterday the UPC party president Mr. Olara Otunnu made changes in the National Party Officials and dropped two people namely; the Party Secretary General Mr. John Odit and the Secretary for Policy and National Mobilization, Mr. David Pulkol” (…)”What is more astonishing is that the party president has chosen to sack Odit and Pulkol at a time when they are just returning from a field trip together with other party officials where regional meetings aimed at strengthening our party structures have been successfully held in Busoga, Bugisu, Bukedi, Sebei, Teso, Karamoja, Lango, Acholi and Westnile. Bunyoro, Toro, Ankole and Kigezi meetings cannot be stopped and must take place by 22nd December 2011 as scheduled. Likewise, the Buganda grassroots elections, which Otunnu has severally tried to block in vain, will continue undisturbed till we are sure the job is fully done.”  (…)”Aware that Otunnu has since his election as party president been a man of mixed signals, secrecy and clandestine movements we would also like to use this occasion to disassociate ourselves from his activities for the sake of building, a reliable, dependable, transparent and law abiding party. As people who have worked with Mr. Otunnu we would like to painfully state, especially for the benefit of all party members, that Mr. Otunnu has never liked and does not love UPC. This could possibly explain why he forgot to vote for himself moreover after using 100% of all the available party funds then for his presidential campaigns alone” (UPC, 2011).

In 2015:

“Following the ruling of Hon. Justice Yasin Nyanzi of the High Court of Uganda (civil Division) on an application for Interim order filed by Olara Otunnu and Five others Misc.application No 412/2015 arising out of Civil Suit No 238 of 2015 made on 30th October 2015, in which Amb. Olara Otunnu (Ex-UPC Party President) had sought an injunction against the UPC Leadership of Hon Jimmy Akena from performing his duties and functions, the decision of UPC members across Uganda as affirmed in the UPC District Conferences presidential Elections and the UPC Delegates Conference of 30th May 2015 and 1st July 2015 respectively was reaffirmed by the High Court of Uganda. This therefore clears the confusion created by the Ex-President of UPC Amb Olara Otunnu about the legitimacy of the Leadership Hon Jimmy Akena. The Leadership of Party President Jimmy Akena extends an olive branch to all Party members who had been caught up in this confusion to rally behind the party” (UPC, 2015).

There is as you seen been steady frictions between the parties for several reasons because of the leadership of both parties. This is natural especially when at one set of time the one party was ruling and it actually the party that was ruling in 1960s and later in 1980s before the bush-war put the other party to be the ruling party. The rhetoric from them both is natural, because those both want to power and now the NRM-Regime is clinging to power. There have even been more movement from the NRM towards the UPC then you might expect.

So that Olara Otunnu said this in November last year:

“It is not about a little piece here, a little leg there, you fix this, and you bridge this gap, no. The system as it is now; the status quo is completely without any legitimacy. It is a system which is integrated, married into State House machinery and controlled by Yoweri Museveni at State House. We want to dismantle that and put in its place a new system which can guarantee free and fair elections” (…)”But there are Museveni elements within UPC and have been using UPC colours; using UPC shelter to cause problems within the party and to push Museveni’s agenda within the party” (NewVision, 2014).

Otunnu

On Olara Otunnu leadership and Museveni:

“The UPC members in the northern Kole District have abandoned their party leader, Dr Olara Otunnu, claiming he lacked the capacity and vision to carry the mantle for the people of Uganda” (…)”“We are not going to base our support on partisan politics, we want leaders who can lead the people of Uganda and this time around, we don’t see any one, apart from Mr Museveni. He should rule until he dies,” said Aboke Sub-county official Boniface Odyek” (Oketch, 2014).

So with the fall of Olara Otunnu of the UPC has been a steppingstone for the Jimmy Akena.” Son of the late Dr. Milton Obote and Lira Munipality MP Jimmy Akena has been voted as the new Uganda People’s Congress (UPC) President.  Delegates from 62 districts in Uganda chose to entrust the party leadership with the son of the party founder “ (…)”Akena’s victory implies that the Obote family once again takes charge of Uganda’s oldest political party. Akena replaces Olara Otunnu who failed to unseat President Museveni in the 2011 elections” (Ortega, 2015).

So that the son of Milton Obote is now in talks with Yoweri Kaguta Museveni and his NRM to have a merger/union or marriage between them during this 2016 is a special one. Especially with the history between the parties; NRM has since day one tried to dissolve the UPC. UPC has never had the same interest of NRM, for the simple reason Museveni never wanted the Uganda UPC wanted to have. Because the Uganda UPC wanted to have was a certainty that NRM and Museveni was not the Mzee and the commander in chief.

The rhetoric and history between should alone tell the tale. It’s so significant if the son of UPC founder Milton Obote – Mr. Jimmy Akena takes his father’s party into an agreement with his arch-enemy Yoweri Kaguta Museveni. That is significant!

Kabaka in the Bush with NRA P2

Milton Obote was even years after defending his party and ways. All of choices in his two short terms wasn’t also that wise; for instance with taking powers away from the kingdoms and their kings. That gave the public and power reach the levels that made the country react to it. That gave an edge to NRA/M. They could promise securities and reinstate the kingdoms.

If we go further into the recent; the way the fall of Olara Otunnu seems like Jimmy Akena has taken it with force and had to get it verified by court. That doesn’t seem like a healthy party structure. Museveni has taken and seen these fractions inside the party.

If that wasn’t enough; Olara Otunnu was working together with the TDA and other oppositions. Even if his maiden party hasn’t had that coming and their Head Chief sees it differently… Jimmy Akena has said this in September: “TDA wants UPC to use its colour orange, instead of our colours. There is no way UPC can do without the red colour” (…)“If we cannot agree on what we are struggling for, it’s going to be hard to unite” (Apunyo, 2015).

Jimmy Akena said this later in September: “I have come to protest UPC’s alleged endorsement of any candidate in the TDA race” (…)”Our party withdrew from TDA long time ago. We didn’t want our name dragged into something we didn’t know” (Kazibwe, 2015).

So that the party went out of the alliance they also lost a lot of goodwill from the other opposition parties. Also they still don’t have a clear mandate for presidency because Jimmy Akena didn’t even put the effort in become a President or filling in the Nomination. So that their have to have an agreement with somebody else to gain traction in 2016. This is all ironic coming how the UPC organization and members has blamed Olara Otunnu for the way the results was after 2011.

Jimmy Akena is not looking solid either if he sells his father’s heritage to becoming the NRM bedfellow. NRM has not the interest of the UPC. UPC is supposed to be a genuine party with its own interest. The same is it with NRM. Also the same with the parties that is a part of the Democratic Alliance which also supposed to have their own agenda and goals in the coming general election that we all know about.

UPC is allowed to go into alliance for their benefit. But they should also think of what their gaining because the NRM is just a vessel of loyalist of Yoweri Kaguta Museveni. The man who has since the beginning of the 1980s has been totally against the UPC, because himself want sole power and sole-candidacy. Therefore it took years after 1986 before the Movement system was strong enough and the legitimacy was there, then he “released” the parties again. One of them apparently happens to be UPC, which he has had a passion trying to destroy. That was because this party was in his way to power.

Akena

So Jimmy Akena must have been greased especially with the moles that Olara Otunnu was talking about November 2014. Akena might be one of them. Still strange from an outsider knowing the history between Mzee and UPC; which the UPC wants to collaborate with NRM. Seems for a ten-years ago something fitting in a sci-fi novel or John Grisham spy-novel.

But now we are here. And if they sign an agreement with NRM; then the UPC has sold it soul to the NRM. NRM has only to get more legitimacy from somebody especially with nearly all the rest of the parties joined hands toward the Presidential candidate of Amama Mbabazi. That must be a torn and also with FDC’s strongman who is getting a vivid following of Dr. Kizza Besigye. That he is talking and negotiating after the Kofi Annan Foundation in London.

NRM must have felt weaken by the TDA. UPC must have felt left alone when they did leave the TDA. NRM had not an invitation to join the TDA. That was because the TDA has one function to get the NRM-Regime away from Power. UPC doesn’t have the same power as the ruling parties and have suction in most areas of the country. That is what UPC is buying. UPC can’t be that weak, except they are being greased or offered something they can’t refuse.

UPC and Akena will never be forgiven if they agree with NRM. Not because all the people’s in NRM is greedy. But many of them are and many are there just to earn the coins. They had proven since 1986 that at one-point they lost the Taxation with Representation. UPC will be like a branch to the Movement System and LDCs instead of their own. Museveni is ruling with Iron Fists. Akena will only gain money and might even position in the coming rigging elections. But the pride of being a strong opposition he is not. That we can also see with the way of handling the TDA and the new coming deal in the NRM. Peace.

Reference:

Adhola, Yoga – ‘UGANDA PEOPLE’S CONGRESS AND NATIONAL RESISTANCE MOVEMENT’ link: http://www.upcparty.net/memboard/UPC%20and%20NRM.pdf

Apunyo, Hudson – ‘Akena explains why UPC is not in TDA’ (14.09.2015) link: http://www.elections.co.ug/new-vision/election/1000620/akena-explains-upc-tda

Golooba-Mutebi, Frederick – ‘COLLAPSE, WAR AND RECONSTRUCTION IN UGANDA

AN ANALYTICAL NARRATIVE ON STATE-MAKING’ – Working Paper No. 27 – Development as State-making (January 2008) – Crisis States Working Papers Series No 2,  LSE Destin Development Studies Institute

Kazibwe, Kenneth – ‘Akena Storms TDA; Denounces Mbabazi Endorsement’ (25.09.2015) link: http://www.chimpreports.com/akena-storms-tda-denounces-mbabazi-endorsement/

Makara, Sabiti – ‘Deepening Democracy Through Multipartyism:The Bumpy road to Uganda’s 2011 elections’ (11.04.2010)

NewVision – ‘‘Museveni has moles in UPC’ – Otunnu’ (30.11.2015) link: http://www.newvision.co.ug/news/662364–museveni-has-moles-in-upc-otunnu.html

Obote, Milton – ‘NOTES ON CONCEALMENT OF GENOCIDE IN UGANDA’ (April, 1990) link: http://www.upcparty.net/obote/genocide.htm

Oketch, Bill – ‘Uganda party endorses Museveni for life presidency’ (06.11.2014) link: http://www.africareview.com/News/Uganda-party-endorses-Museveni-for-life-presidency/-/979180/2513500/-/ehxho6/-/index.html

Omach, Paul – ‘Democratization and Conflict Resolution in Uganda’ link: http://ifra-nairobi.net/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/1Omach.pdf

Ortega, Ian – ‘Late Obote’s Son, Akena Declared UPC President’ (02.06.2015) link: http://www.independent.co.ug/news/136-the-news-today/10303-late-obotes-son-akena-declared-upc-president

UPC- ‘Press Statement: MUSEVENI’S RECORD AND LEGACY: DRIVING UGANDA TO CATASTROPHY’ (09.05.2001) link: http://www.upcparty.net/press/museveni_record.htm

UPC – Press Statement – (4th November 2015) link: http://www.upcparty.net/press/Press4Nov2015.pdf

UPC – ‘Press Release: Defying Olara Otunnu in defence of UPC’ (13.12.2011) link: http://www.upcparty.net/press/13dec11.htm

How the new counties will change for the constituencies before the Presidential General Election 2016 in Uganda – and which MPs it affects.

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Recently there been reports that yet again the government of Uganda has decided to split a certain numbers of counties into 39 new counties and in the end make the total amount of Member of Parliament (MPs) to 424 (Kisakye, 2015). This can only been seen as a calculated plan to gain more MPs by the government party to reign over this new counties. I will go through who will have to fight for new constituency and votes in newly created counties that the government wishes. This will be after the list that was on the Observer. I will take district after district. An over time I think you’ll see a pattern.

Agago County MPs:

Who? Party:
John Amos Okot NRM
Judith Franca Akello FDC

Amuria County MPs:

Who? Party:
Francis Musa Ecweru NRM

Manjiya County MPs:

Who? Party:
David Wakikona NRM

Bukedea County MPs:

Who? Party:
George Stephen Ekuma NRM
Rose Akol Okullu NRM

Bukomansimbi County MPs:

Who? Party:
Deogratius (Deo) Kiyingi DP
Susan Namaganda DP

Bulambuli County MPs:

Who? Party:
Irene Nafuna Muloni NRM
Midimi Wamakuyu NRM

Dokolo County MPs:

Who? Party:
Felix Okot Ogong NRM
Cecilla Barbera Atim Ogwal FDC

Gomba County MPs:

Who? Party:
Rosemary Muyinda Najjemba NRM
Kyabangi Katusiime Nakato NRM

Kilak County MPs:

Who? Party:
Gilbert Olanya Independent
Betty Bigombe Atuku NRM

Dodoth East – Kaabong County MPs:

Who? Party:
Samson Lokeris NRM

Bulamogi County – Kaliro District MPs:

Who? Party:
Kenneth Lubago Independent
Flavia Nabugere NRM

Kibuku County MPs:

Who? Party:
Moses Saleh Wilson Kamba NRM
Sarah Mwebaza Wanene NRM

Nyabushozi County MPs:

Who? Party:
Fred Mwesigye NRM
Beatrice Rusaniya Namala Barumba NRM

Kibanda County MPs:

Who? Party:
Sam Owor Amooti Otada Independent
Helen Kahunde NRM

Chua County MPs:

Who? Party:
Henry Okello Oryem NRM
Beatrice Anywar Atim FDC

Kole County MPs:

Who? Party:
Fred Ebil UPC
Joy Ruth Acheng UPC

Kumi County MPs:

Who? Party:
Patrick Oboi Amuriat FDC
Christine Hellen Amongin Aporu NRM

Kiboga West County MPs:

Who? Party:
Samuel Ssemugaba NRM
Ann Maria Nankabirwa NRM

Kyaka County MPs:

Who? Party:
William Ngabu Kwemara NRM
Flavia Kabahenda Rwabuhoro NRM

Mwenge North County MPs:

Who? Party:
David Muhumuza NRM

Luuka County MPs:

Who? Party:
John B.  Ngobi Bagoole Independent
Evelyn Naome Mpagni N. Kaabule NRM

Maracha County MPs:

Who? Party:
Alex Onzima Independent
Ruth Molly  Ondoru Lematia NRM

Kashari County MPs:

Who? Party:
Yaguma Wilberforce NRM

Ruhinda County MPs:

Who? Party:
Kahinda Otafiire NRM
Jovah Kamateeka NRM

Matheniko County MPs:

Who? Party:
Dr. John Baptist Lokii NRM

Aruu County MPs:

Who? Party:
CD Oketayot Lowila NRM
Samuel Otto Odonga FDC

Kooki County MPs:

Who? Party:
Amos Mandera NRM

Mawogola County MPs:

Who? Party:
Sam Kahamba Kutesa NRM
Anifa Kawooya Bangirana NRM

Soroti County MPs:

Who? Party:
Michael George Mukula NRM
Peter Omolo FDC
Angelline Osegge FDC

Okoro County MPs:

Who? Party:
Stanley Oribdhogu Omwonya NRM

Butebo County MPs:

Who? Party:
Stephen Oscar Malinga NRM

Tororo County MPs:

Who? Party:
Geofrey Ekanya FDC

Kibaale County MPs:

Who? Party:
Frank Kagyigyi Tumwebaze NRM

Aringa County MPs: (Will be three more districts)

Who? Party:
Achile Manoah Mile UPC
Abason Huda Oleru NRM

Bugahya County MPs:

Who? Party:
James Kiiza Rwebembera NRM

Koboko County MPs:

Who? Party:
Ahmed Awongo NRM
Margreth Diri Bara NRM

Kassanda County MPs:

Who? Party:
Godfrey Lubega Independent
Thembo George William Nyombi NRM

East Moyo County MPs:

Who? Party:
Moses Ali NRM
Jesica Ababiku Independent

In numbers of the MPs that is on the line and getting new districts to get votes for re-elections in the 2016 elections. This here will be decisive for them. AS you can see that even some district has big birds and people who have been in the wind for a long time like Otafiire from Ruhinda County. But now let me show the numbers:

Party: Total MPs: Percentage:
NRM (National Resistance Movement) 45 69%
FDC (Forum for Democratic Change) 8 12%
DP (Democratic Party) 2 3%
UPC (Uganda People’s Congress) 3 4.6%
Independent 7 10.7%
Total Sum of MPS: 65 100%

This should be call on how the NRM wish to split the votes in certain areas so that they can eat more of the votes in next election. That they can take more of the independent votes and also from the opposition parties like FDC.

Uganda regions

Let me show the areas that are being split not just name of main counties. Since Uganda has been split to smaller and smaller fractions and now is hard to remember where the “original” bigger counties where before they got into the humongous number of 424. So let see here:

Part of the Country Total Couties:
Buganda VI – 6
Ankole IIII – 4
Kigezi 0 – 0
Toro II – 2
Bunyoro II – 2
Acholi VI – 6
West Nile IIII – 4
Lango II – 2
Karamoja I – 1
Teso III – 3
Sebei 0 – 0
Bugisha 0 – 0
Bukedi II – 2
Busoga V – 5
Total Counties: 37

(Aringa County will become three counties – North/South and Yumbe)

Numbers game:

If you can quickly see it’s the central regions that have a certain level of changes like in the Ankole, Busoga, Bunyoro and Buganda. The number of counties which is changing in the central/eastern is 17 of 39. Other areas that are also getting a renovation from the government are the Acholi, West Nile and Karamoja which is the Northern parts of Uganda. The total of areas that will be changed is 13 of 39Those total 30 of the 39. So it’s easily to see where the main changes are happening. Sometimes in the heartland of the opposition parties than in the Movement territory, so if you think otherwise. Look at the numbers and see even if this is going after 69% of the MPs are NRM. We all know that around Mbale and up north has voted for DP more than NRM in history. FDC is also gaining more grown in eastern, central and western areas. Therefore NRM fearing this, FDC candidate even won in Amuru by-election in November 2014. So that the Government is making a change in the districts around isn’t surprising. But let’s look at the other part of this changes that I haven’t touched on yet. Not the number game, but the real election game.

Election game:

This strategy is amazing. The way you split counties to reassure and get more loyalty from the new LDC then before. Therefore doing this so close to the election makes the 40 new counties and 40 new MPs. Also open up new constituency and voter’s numbers that need to be secure to get the MP for a county in. Thirdly and last point is that the history of voting in an area get diminish because the new counties. This will lead to smaller counties and need less people to vote the MP in the area. That can be either a gift or a curse. That the counties are getting to be smaller populations so that their easier to manipulate since their no current voting history in this counties. So that the loyalist will get more positions during next elections and also getting new LDCs that will supposedly to give the local community more control and also support the governments work in the areas. Like getting supervision over the primary school and police I guess. But we all know that this is more securing the NRM government more control over the areas and getting the loyal supporters of the Mzee becoming MPs and also making new counties to disfranchise the opposition if possible. That this  areas are also in places where the Independent MPs are coming from and just a few big shots like Kahinda Otafiire. I look forward to see the results from the Presidential General Election of 2016. Hope you do as well in the new counties and see if the MPs from the 9th Parliament will arrive from the new counties.

Just a by the way – on the information flow:

The irony of it all, I couldn’t find the MPs on the Parliaments own site or government official sites online. I found the best by the sites that are targeted by the government. Like the lists from Uganda at Heart had an awesome and amazing list. Second list was from an anti-corruption NGO from Uganda. So the one that isn’t supposed to be friendly with the government is the one that has organized it the best and that is a rare instance. Because a brother expect to easily see who represent them. Taxation with representation, the parliament page of the Ugandan government isn’t sufficient or a page that is really working. Hope that Hostalite and make them a better page indeed. And the Parliament Watch site was ten times better. Where I could double check the result of the General Election of 2011 was from the elected MPs from the Electoral Commission of Uganda. I am grateful that one supposed to be unbiased governmental institution has certain information to the public so I could verify what I found at Uganda at Heart and also the information from Parliamentary Watch. Thanks! Peace.

Reference:

Kisakye, Frank – ‘Govt creates 39 new counties, number of MPs rises to 424’ (15.07.2015) Link: http://www.observer.ug/news-headlines/38782-govt-creates-39-new-counties-mps-rise-to-424

FDC PARTY’s message to the Parliamentary Committee on Legal.(Exec.summary), 19.05.2015

ELECTORAL REFORMS TO ESTABLISH A CREDIBLE ELECTIONS MANAGEMENT SYSTEM IN UGANDA

A.            Preamble

1.            Thank you Chairman and Members of the Committee for inviting the FDC to interface with you with regard to your ongoing work on constitutional reforms. As a Party, FDC is part of the non-partisan coalition – the Free and Fair Elections Campaign – whose goal is to advocate for the establishment of a credible electoral management system in Uganda. It is therefore in this context that we address this Committee today.

B.            Our Messages to the Committee on Legal and Parliamentary Affairs.

2.            As the Forum for Democratic Change, we are obliged to submit the views that are shared across by the citizens of Uganda, organizations and citizens’ formations that subscribe to the Free and Fair Elections Campaign. We are therefore here to deliver three specific messages:

i)             Upon careful review of the Bill, we have resisted every temptation to characterize it as “stupid” like several members of this Committee have aptly characterized it. However, the purported Bill represents the growing arrogance and impunity that has come to characterize the Government under the NRMO regime. Consequently, in considering it during these public hearings and the plenary, your task is not so much to consider a bill that is both empty and devoid of substance but also to have the courage and confidence to cut through this arrogance and impunity.

ii)            Secondly, the Free and Fair Elections Campaign has been mobilizing citizens across this country to demand for comprehensive electoral reforms to ensure that a credible electoral management system is established. We have previously delivered the Citizens Compact on Free and Fair Elections to the Speaker and Deputy Speaker of Parliament, as well as all the mandated Governmental of Uganda ministries and agencies. All these agencies have chosen to ignore us and present to you a Bill that does not contain any of our views. We are therefore here to, once again, on behalf of thousands of Ugandans who participated in the Free and Fair Elections Campaign process and thousands others that are signing in support of the Compact, to deliver to you our electoral reform proposals.

iii)           Our third message is about the place of the 9th Parliament with regard to the reform process. We recognize that this Parliament is, itself, a result of electoral processes that had fundamental defects, which our proposals seek to address. This Parliament is still a vestige of the “Movement Political System” and the proposed reforms are, in a large part, intended to complete the transition to “Multiparty Political System”. That’s why a “National Dialogue” by citizens, in their most diverse formations, as was attempted in the process that generated the “Uganda Citizens’ Compact on Free and Fair Elections” is a vital and more legitimate source of getting the genuine views of Ugandans on these fundamental political issues.

iv)           Finally, the tenure of the 9th Parliament is coming to an end in less than 10 months. For almost 5 years, the 9th Parliament has either by commission or omission failed to respond to the loud voices of the citizens of Uganda to ensure that the Executive introduces appropriate electoral reforms well in time before the scheduled elections in February 2016. Like the Government has done in 2005 and 2010, electoral reforms are brought late to Parliament and you are stampeded to enact peripheral reforms that do not address the structural problems inherent in our electoral system. We are therefore here to implore you not to be stampeded by the Executive once again and through this Committee, to invite the 9th Parliament to join us in demanding for elections after comprehensive reforms have been put in place.

C.            About the Free and Fair Elections Campaign

3.            The Free and Fair Elections Campaign (FFE Campaign) is a non-partisan effort by Ugandans Citizens in their various formations: political parties, civil society, religious organizations, professional associations, women’s and youth organizations, pro-democracy pressure groups and eminent Ugandans committed to fight for reforms that will result into the establishment of a credible electoral management system to guarantee free and fair elections in our country.

4.            The FFE Campaign is a product of the failure by the Parliament of Uganda to do its fundamental constitutional duty and power to legislate for the good governance of our country as it is commended by article 79 of our Constitution. Like the 7th and the 8th Parliament, the 9th Parliament will go down in the annals of our history as abdicating this duty because of its failure to invest in reforming our electoral laws over its 5 year tenure and then scampering and pleading for time during these last days towards the general elections scheduled for 2016. Mr. Chairman and Members, you very well know that you have been around for 5 years and therefore the apparent stampeding of the reform process is your making and hence unwarranted.

D.            The Citizens Compact on Free and Fair Elections

5.            As you may be fully aware, the FFE Campaign started three years ago and has been focused on mobilizing citizens to push both the Executive and Parliament to their job and enact appropriate laws to establish a credible electoral management system for our country. The campaign moved with significant momentum in 2014 when numerous public rallies jointly organized by political leaders and civil society were organized across the country.

6.            In the second half of 2014, 14 regional forums on free and fair elections were held in:

i)             Karamoja

ii)            West Nile

iii)           Acholi

iv)           Lango

v)            Teso

vi)           Busoga

vii)          Bukedi

viii)         Bunyoro

ix)           Buganda

x)            Ankole

xi)           Toro

xii)          Kigezi

xiii)         Sebei

xiv)         Bugisu

7.            Each of these forums was attended by 200-400 political, religious, business and civic leaders representing a wide cross section of our society. An estimated 4,700 citizens directly participated in these forums while thousands engaged through popular radio talk shows. The FFE Campaign process culminated into the National Consultation on Free and Fair Elections, which took place on November 24, 2014. Over 1,300 participants representing political parties, professional and civic organizations, religious leaders and eminent Ugandans attended the National Consultation. Although the National Resistance Movement Organization (NRMO) did not send an official delegation, NRMO leaders (at least 17% of all representation from political parties) from across the country attended and participated fully in the deliberations.

8.            The Free and Fair Elections Campaign also took into account fairly comprehensive proposals prepared and submitted by:

i)             The Inter-Party Organizations for Dialogue (IPOD)

ii)            The Citizens Coalition on Electoral Democracy (CCEDU)

iii)           The National Consultative Forum (NCF)

iv)           The Electoral Commission (EC), and

v)            The Cabinet proposals contained in a matrix published in June 2014.

9.            The National Consultation on Free and Fair Elections adopted the Citizens Compact on Free and Fair Elections containing 17 electoral reform proposals and 1 proposals regarding its implementation. We believe that given the nature of the FFE Campaign process, the Citizens Compact reflects a national consensus on the fundamental reforms needed to create a credible electoral management system in the country. Accordingly, we are asking this Committee to recommend to the plenary to enact comprehensive electoral reforms covering the following:

i)             Establishment of a new and independent electoral commission.

ii)            Ensuring the integrity of the voting process.

iii)           Clearly delineating the roles of security agencies in the electoral process and prohibiting the use of Government trained and political party led militia groups.

iv)           Securing the integrity of the campaign process.

v)            Addressing and dismantling the current system of patronage.

vi)           Separating the state from the current ruling party and developing safeguards to ensure that this does not happen in future.

vii)          Prohibiting gerrymandering through the creation of new administrative units and electoral constituencies.

viii)         Restoring and securing the freedoms to organize and assemble that are continuously being eroded through legislative and administrative actions.

ix)           Reforming the system of selecting presiding officers.

x)            Securing the process of processing electoral materials.

xi)           Ensuring the integrity of the tallying process.

xii)          Securing the independence and boosting the integrity of the judiciary as an arbiter for election disputes.

xiii)         Strengthen the internal democracy of political parties.

xiv)         Preserving the mandate of the electorate regarding their elected representatives.

xv)          Reviewing the representation of special interest groups with a view to ending special representation by the UPDF and workers.

xvi)         Establishing a more reliable funding architecture for local governments to enhance their autonomy and capacity to deliver public services.

xvii)        Restoring and entrenching presidential term limits.

10.          Mr. Chairman and Members, on behalf of the thousands of Ugandans who participated in the public rallies, the regional consultation forums and the National Consultation on Free and Fair Elections, and the thousands of Ugandans that continue to sign up in support of the Citizens Compact on Free and Fair Elections, we lay this Compact before you as the legitimate expression of growing national consensus on electoral reforms.

E.            The Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2015

11.          As we have already stated, the purported Bill represents the highest degree of arrogance and impunity with which Government under the NRMO regime approaches matters of importance to our country. This Bill is both empty and devoid of substance. It ignores every common-sense electoral reform proposal contained in the numerous submissions by the Electoral Commission (EC), the Inter-Party Organizations for Dialogue (IPOD), the Citizens Coalition of Electoral Democracy (CCEDU), the National Consultative Forum (NCF) and the Free and Fair Elections Campaign (FFE Campaign). Indeed, it is unfortunate that parliament has to spend Ugandan taxpayers money to enable you spend valuable time to conduct public hearings on this empty Bill. That is why we have chosen not to address any specific aspects of this purported Bill because we find it unwarranted.

F.            Our Call to the 9th Parliament

12.          We wish to implore this parliament to do everything possible to resist the current course that the Executive has put you on, to drive our country to yet another cliff. As Members may recall, our country has suffered numerous episodes of violence and conflict in the majority of cases triggered by contested elections. In 1980, the current president took up arms and subjected our country to a protracted military conflict leading to the death of an estimated 500,000 people and the decimation of state and civic institutions and the destruction of our economy. Since the promulgation of the 1995 Constitution, which sought to reset the governance button and return our country to sanity and good governance, the results of the elections held in 1996 and 2011 were highly contested because of disputes over a level playing field, which is rooted in our current electoral system and the absence of an independent electoral commission.

13.          We end by reminding you and ourselves that this Committee and the Parliament of Uganda does not legislate for the Executive that gave you the purported Constitution (Amendment) Bill, 2015. Both the Executive and the Parliament legislate for the Citizens of Ugandan. The Bill before you seeks to disenfranchise us, concentrate power in the office of the President and render this Parliament peripheral in the governance of our country. We therefore implore you to reject the purported bill, use your inherent legislative powers to enact and ensure full implementation of electoral reforms before elections are held. You are our representatives. Listen to us and the sense of reason as contained in the Citizens Compact on Free and Fair Elections and other reform proposals submitted by various citizens platforms as already stated above. And when the history of this country is written again, it can be put on record that when that historical moment as to whether to move backward or forward, the 9th Parliament chose going to the future against going to the past.

For God and My Country

May 19, 2015

Kampala-Uganda

OBBI: Buganda Kingdom Grassrots letter to all Ugandans of 22th April 2013 (a must read!)

22th April 2013

To the Peoples of the Original 15
(Kingdoms, Territories and Districts
That formed Uganda at Lancaster)

Dear Sir/Madam!

Olukiiko Lwa Bazzukulu Ba Buganda International is Buganda Kingdom’s worldwide grassroots organization. We are writing in great distress over the signs of the times that proclaim a regime change around the corner. This in Uganda is always a violent process with many lives lost and properties destroyed. Even though this usually happens mostly in Buganda, severe atrocities have been committed in other regions too. For this reason, we are calling to all of you, individually and collectively, to join us in working towards a change management strategy. To start with, we have to go back and look at Uganda’s past and present and decide on the most logical and effective course of action.

In the year 1962, groups of people from the Kingdoms of Buganda, Ankole, Toro and Bunyoro, the Territory of Busoga, Districts of Acholi, Lango, Teso, Bukedi, Bugisu, Kigezi, Karamoja, West Nile, Sebei and Madi went to Lancaster in the United Kingdom to take part in a conference for the formation of the country Uganda. These were the original 15, designated as kingdom, territory, etc., according to their preferences. They represented every individual man and woman from their respective areas. Coerced as the Union was, choosing it over conflicts with our conquerors burdened us with a responsibility towards its member groups. Nevertheless, many who occupied the leadership positions ever since chose to become colonial agents. They did not hesitate to speak and act in ways detrimental to some groups. Their subservient mentality drove them to conduct an aggressive brainwashing program on their people, pushing them to commit crimes with far-reaching consequences. The people’s fault was failure to search for the truth, in some instances ignoring it even when obvious, thus condoning injustice and refusing to think their own thoughts. This is a problem, which we must solve in order to reverse this trend of total destruction threatening us all.

The colonialists and their agents had a plan, to assimilate the different peoples into a common culture at breakneck speed. The intent of this was the extinction of any remnant of indigenous characteristics that would inspire rebellion against the British Empire, over the long term. They called this, breaking eggs to make an omelette. The trouble was that each agent in charge wanted the final product to be a hybrid of his own and the English cultures. The other groups resisted. Buganda being at the center of all this, did so relentlessly. The differences persisted, albeit wrapped in hypocrisy. What would have been natural borderlines in a true and voluntary multicultural union ended up being splits in a dysfunctional unit. Through these cracks, enemies from within and without would take hold and pull to complete the damage. Today, it is a common secret that people feel loyalty only to their Kingdoms, Territory and Districts. At times like this, each of them sits in council discussing their group struggle. They scheme to fight, conquer and oppress others to secure for themselves the lion’s share of what Uganda has to offer, though some just struggle for their survival in the only way that appears possible. However, the past has taught quite a few sharp lessons to those who unreservedly thought and acted as Ugandans. The betrayals, arrogance, lies, theft, insults and gruesome crimes have been a tough drill to forget. As a result, this time around, hoodwinking the public is extremely difficult. Moreover, without trust the prospects of working together look dim. Anyone feigning ignorance of this is either self-seeking or incompetent. Meanwhile we hang between the devil and the deep blue sea.

Here in Buganda, children are murdered in sacrificial rituals, people of all sexes and ages are raped in broad daylight, bludgeoned with iron rods, burnt with acid, whole families butchered and many innocent people locked up in prisons, while frequent poisonings threaten to undo our social fibre. All this has made ours a fertile ground for diseases. There is land grabbing, disinterment of our dead, burning of schools and work places, destruction of shrines, desecration of our norms and traditions, as well as violation of the ecosystem and distortion of our history. Public funds are stolen, health and education are in the gutter, properties robbed, people displaced and our ancestral land auctioned off to foreigners. All these together qualify as high-key systematic genocide of the Baganda. Uganda is on a free-fall descent down into the pit. It is indisputable now that only the truth shall set us free.

All over the world, the Baganda are demonstrating a great will to come to terms with our past and present, as well as take responsibility of our future through brainstorming. We have put together the ideas we have gathered from these meetings, to help boost individual and group endeavours in finding lasting solutions to our common Ugandan problems. From these we have chosen ten redemption points attached to this letter. It has been said that wars begin in the mind, and that is where they must end first. It is imperative that we understand the impossibility of building order on disorder. Uganda was built on a bad foundation for all the wrong reasons. Nevertheless, we are all leaders at different level of society. Fullfilling this responsibility should be high on our list of priorities. We need to start thinking and working seriously about saving lives above everything else. For the lives we save might be our own or those of our loved ones.

Please pass on this letter and the Ten Redemption Points to as many people as you can.

God and Buganda, One Spirit, One Living Heart
Long live the Kabaka of Buganda Ssaabasajja Muwenda Mutebi II

Yours faithfully
Major General Elly Kigozi
……………………….
OBBI – Secretary Diaspora (London)

CC: Ssaabasajja Kabaka Muwenda Mutebi II
CC: Traditional Leaders of the other 14 of the Original 15

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