Opinion: Bobi Wine’s ideal is commendable, but his warning to Mzee will not be followed

Today, the People Power Movement hold a Presser in the home of Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine in Kyadondo East, Wakiso District. This is not the first time he has held a press conference there. That is just the way things are in the Republic. Today’s Presser is an answer to the “Scientific” elections in the revised road map for the General Elections in 2021.

We know Bobi Wine is a fierce speaker and he proven that yet again today:

Museveni, like all dictators before him, is determined to keep in power at any cost. He does not care what happens to the people of Uganda, as long as he is in State House! Fellow Ugandans, Museveni is at it again. He recently met with the Electoral Commission and gave them orders to organize what he called a scientific election. Using the coronavirus as an excuse, he is banning public rallies and other aspects of an election as we know them! No Ugandan should be fooled into believing that Museveni is doing this for the safety of Ugandans. As we speak now, most urban places are filled with people going about their usual business uninterrupted. No social distancing, no nothing. If anyone has any doubts, please visit Kikuubo, or any other urban place. Therefore Museveni and the Electoral Commission should not take Ugandans for fools” (Bobi Wine, 22.06.2020).

What he said here is the truth. Bobi Wine just said what’s needed to be said. Many wouldn’t dare saying this and with his platform he still does it. Plenty of more people will listen, because he said it. Kizza Besigye has said similar before, in other instances, but now that Bobi Wine says it. It might have more flair to it. As it yet another leader of the opposition who sees it.

But let me use this opportunity to put President Museveni on notice. You might have forgotten what you said in 1980 but we have not forgotten. On the eve of the 1980 election, you, Museveni, put Obote on notice. You said that if he rigged that election, you would go to the bush and fight against him. We have come to that point yet again. We are telling you that you either organize a free and fair election or step down peacefully, but if you continue provoking the patience of the people of Uganda, they will rise up against you and you will end up in the dustbin of history like your friend Ghadafi, like your friend Mobutu and like your friend Omar El Bashir” (Bobi Wine, 22.06.2020).

Here is revisiting history, a history that the President has been proud of and repeated so that all generations and walks of life knows. The President cannot hide that. Museveni is so proud of how he got to power and all the people he finessed to get there. We all know this, as it has been blasted for years and years to the public. He has even walked twice in the steps of the bush-war to celebrate the civil war he was the victor of back-in-the-day.

Bobi Wine’s notice is noble idea. It is righteous step. However, there is no way in hell that Museveni will hold a free and fair elections. President Museveni wouldn’t win in a free and fair election. He knows this and the whole Republic knows this. That is why he has total control of the Electoral Commission and all other authorities needed to own the state.

The opposition are right and justified to ask for a free and fair election. Anyone who takes a stand and wants to challenge for public office should be able to do so. Where everyone has the same opportunity for everyone. Where everyone has the same difficulties and everyone who becomes a candidate can win and can challenge the results without interference in the elections. However, that is not how its in the republic where the state and the incumbents of the government has an upperhand with resources and control of the Electoral Commission.

Bobi Wine and everyone else is allowed to say their grievances towards this system. A system built for Museveni and his cadres. The 2021 election will not differ from 2016, 2011, 2006, 2001 and 1996. All of these has been rigged, just like they have tried to do with every single by-election too. This is not news, but a reality that the President has created over the years.

The challenge is healthy, the challenge is needed, but hopefully not just words. But a STERN WARNING about what Bobi Wine and the United Forces for Change (UFC) will deliver. I don’t believe a second that the National Resistance Movement or the President will not rig these up-coming election. That would be a lie. A big FAT lie. This regime knows only how to win by pre-fixing the results to their advantage. To say otherwise is naive and stupid.

Bobi Wine did the right thing, but the state will not steer the wheel differently. For the simple reason: They are not willing to loose, because this is all they have. Peace.

Digital Campaigning: Expect opposition candidates to be blocked from the air-waves during the campaigns…

The Electoral Commission released the Road Map for the General Elections of 2021 today. This is so everyone involved, every stakeholder and party can adjust their programs. They can work towards the deadlines, deliver their nominated candidates and prepare for impact. We can all assume this is done for some transparency. However, there been no legislation nor any changes of substance since the 2016 General Elections. So expect another rigged race and outcome, which is already pre-fixed by the buddies within the EC.

To think otherwise in 2020 is naive and deluded. The National Resistance Movement (NRM) will own the Parliament, will hold the stranglehold on the Presidency and will only give breadcrumbs to the Opposition. That is what it does to show sympathy and also prove to donors that it has some sort of democracy. Even when all know it isn’t real and there are no level playing-field.

The Road Map today was striking and COVID-19 based, as the EC is preparing for digitally campaigning for all the parties involved. The Electoral Commission stated today this: “Mass rallies will not be allowed but campaigns will be conducted mainly through media” (EC, 16.06.2020).

With this in mind, the candidates on various of levels has a short span of time to hit the airwaves, online outlets and on the TV screens. This is coming as the state has enforced the OTT Tax and made it expensive to be on social media. The state also known for blocking opposition leaders to on the local radios. If they are sincere in this election. They will open up the radios, let the opposition candidates have conversations and appeal to the public through there. As the rural areas isn’t fully operative with internet to every village and home. There are not even electricity to every home. That is why this strategy will backfire and someone will not get the whole gist from all candidates.

We can also expect that the President and the NRM blocks the airwaves for the times of the speeches of the President. Especially in the time frame of the digitally campaigns. That is just inevitable. He will block Besigye and Bobi Wine from speaking out at the same time. He will not accept that. That is hurting his fragile ego.

There are just something we can anticipate. There will be self-made sessions on Facebook and Live Taping, which is not needed with any media house. However, if the people want to reach far and wide. Than they need to hit the airwaves, needs to be on the TV stations and be able to speak across the platforms. We have seen in the past that the Uganda Communication Commission has sanctioned Radios, TV stations for having Bobi Wine on. They have also blocked Besigye, even RDCs has blocked Besigye for appearing on Radio shows. So, we anticipate a hurdle and destructive patterns here.

The system and control from high above will be visible here. I don’t expect it to really change. However, they should if they want it to look good. I expect arrests, house-arrests and other things. Just as the opposition are trying to travel to radio stations and such. That is just the sad reality Also expect police to block stations and stop from transmitting. This is just something that will appear. Later the UCC and RDC will have an excuse and do it for “safety”. Even if the Opposition is supposed to be allowed on the airwaves. While the NRM candidates and Flag-Bearers can do whatever they feel.

This is just my imagination, but I don’t think its far fetched from the possibly reality in a few months time. Unless, they suddenly opens for rallies and then venues will be closed. Where the Opposition will be chased by the authorities and sometimes end behind bars. Peace.

Another Opposition Coalition (UFC) to beat Mzee: Will it work this time?

There was once upon a time the Inter-Party Cooperation (IPC) for the 2011. This was a coalition of six parties, while three parties later had a fall out with it and its choices. Therefore, the Democratic Party (DP), Uganda People’s Congress (UPC) and Social Democratic Party (SDP) both went out and ran on their own. DP and UPC wanted to run their own Presidential Candidates, while SDP was furious that the mayoral choice for Kampala. We know that this didn’t work at this General Election. The coalition in the end was a mix of Forum for Democratic Change (FDC), Conservative Party and Justice Forum (JEEMA).

For the 2016 General Election there was another Opposition Coalition in play. This was the Democratic Alliance (TDA), which consisted of various of opposition parties too. However, here the parties that pulled out of it was the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) to field their own Presidential Candidate. The ones remaining was the pressure group Go Forward (Amama Mbabazi), Pressure for National Unity (PNU) Gilbert Bukenya, Democratic Party (DP), Uganda People’s Congress (UPC) and Justice Forum (JEEMA). We see here that DP and UPC didn’t ditch it, as Norbert Mao couldn’t run and James Akena didn’t run for the Presidency this time. Because these parties challenged with Mao (DP) in 2011 and Olara Otunnu (UPC), but this round they couldn’t or wasn’t fit. That is why they supported the candidacy of Amama Mbabazi (Go Forward). We know that Amama and the TDA flame fizzled out quickly.

So, when I heard today that the Pressure Group People’s Power Movement (PPM), Forum for Democratic Change (FDC), Justice Forum (JEEMA), Truth and Justice (TJ), Conservative Party (CP), Democratic Party (DP) and Uganda People’s Congress (UPC) are all involved in the United Forces for Change (UFC) for the 2021 General Elections.

The main leaders this time is Dr. Kizza Besigye (FDC) and Robert Kyagulanyi (PPM). Alliance for National Transformation (ANT) Mugisha Muntu has opted out and at this time his right not to join. His reasons are clear, but it’s a bit funny. Because he had no issues with joining the Special Utility Vehicle (SUV) of the Democratic Party (DP) and the union of similar parties. So, in this regard it might be spite, because he would still be in the shadow of former leader and party president of the FDC. That is just how it looks from the outside looking in. When leaders from all the other opposition parties are joining. Not that its shocking, but don’t expect everyone to join the ride.

Expect the DP to fall out, as Mao has grudges with Besigye. JEEMA, TJ and CP will be on the ride the whole time. They only gain positives by it and have a bigger platform during the election cycle. However, with the past history. The grinding questions of how close the UPC is to the NRM. There will only be fringes of the party to join the UFC. Akena will not ditch the money train of the NRM Alliance to be part of UFC. Also with all the things Mao has done behind the scenes, I don’t expect him to run behind Besigye and Bobi Wine. His already a bit mad at Besigye for some unfortunate reason. So, we can only imagine that he will ditch out here for the DP Block and whatever he calls it. So, I anticipate the UPC and DP to tell its members to come home. If they don’t than they are betraying their parties. That is why Lukwago is a TJ and not a DP anymore.

Let me clear after all that said: Yes, I want change, but if you cannot see a pattern here. These platforms, these coalitions aren’t making it. There is a reason there is a need for many challengers. The strength, their vision and their manifestos comes out and can change things up. To beat the NRM by the polls, by an election is futile. That has been proven since 1986. Not because of lack of trying. Not because there haven’t candidates suitable or popular to beat Museveni. No, because there haven’t been the will to give way for a peaceful transition. Museveni will not loose now either. He will rig the election into oblivion. No matter what the opposition throws at it, the results will be about the same. Just different faces, unless they want to show civil disobedience and actually attack the heart of the government. Break it down to its knees and ensure its downfall. That will cost, but through the polls. I can assure you, nothing will happen. The status quo continues and the same party reign supreme. They got the guns and the authorities to send the others packing.

The UFC will have the same fate as IPC and TDA. Maybe more finesse behind Bobi Wine than a insider and friendly NRMer in Amama. Still, the UFC will only have a fools hope. Just like Frodo in the Lord of the Rings. As Gandalf said in ‘The Return of the King’:

Tell me,’ he said, ‘is there any hope? For Frodo, I mean; or at least mostly for Frodo.’ Gandalf put his hand on Pippin’s head. ‘There never was much hope,’ he answered. ‘Just a fool’s hope, as I have been told. And when I heard of Cirith Ungol–‘ He broke off and strode to the window, as if his eyes could pierce the night in the East. ‘Cirith Ungol!’ he muttered. ‘Why that way, I wonder?’ He turned. ‘Just now, Pippin, my heart almost failed me, hearing that name. And yet in truth I believe that the news that Faramir brings has some hope in it. For it seems clear that the Enemy has opened his war at last and made the first move when Frodo was still free. So now for many days he will have his eye turned this way and that, away from his own land. And yet, Pippin, I feel from afar his haste and fear. He has begun sooner than he would. Something has happened to stir him.”- J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King

In the same way I look at this UFC. Not because I don’t want the junta, the militarized government and the oppressors out the Republic and into a proper civilian government. I want all of that to happen. The injustice has been going on for far too long. However, using similar tricks to beat the same dragon. I doubt it will have affect. Even if it has a new potential leader and could be the Frodo who gets the ring to Mount Doom to change history of Middle Earth to break the power of Sauron and Mordor. Still, that is a fools errand to believe that, even if the hope is there. Just like it was plenty of times with Besigye.

We need the hope and have fate that someone will bring the ring to Mount Doom. However, is this the team and the pacifier to stop the NRM? I don’t have the answer… I really don’t, but I just want them to challenge the authorities head-on and not play games that has been fought before. The names changes, but the end game stays the same.

Bobi Wine is maybe Frodo here, but that is only a lucky guess. Then Besigye is his Samwise Gamgee. But we don’t know that and Sauron continues to deploy his troops and ensure that no one gets unscratched by his army of Orcs. Right? You get the drill?

I don’t have the answers, but I just feel we are repeating history without crossing the authorities with enough power and finesse. We are doing the same old thing and getting nowhere. Stalling awaiting for the lucky brother to find the Ring in the river and get turned into Gollum. Instead of being a Frodo going into a journey, which will change everything, but will also cost. Peace.