Karamoja: The NRM got money for the army, but not for the starving…

The recent surge in cattle theft and cross-border conflicts in Minister Kasiaja: Karamoja sub-region issues will continue to be addressed. In a recent supplementary budget, Government provided Shs.112.5 Billions to facilitate the UPDF to carry out operations” (91.2 Crooze FM, 14.06.2022).

More than half a million people are going hungry in Karamoja – Report” (…) “A new report indicates that the Karamoja region is undergoing a crisis of food insecurity and may slump into famine if there are no measures to reverse the situation immediately. The report on integrated food security phase classification also shows that Moroto and Kaabong districts are in a critical phase of acute malnutrition. While receiving the report, the government committed to implementing some of the short-term recommendations” (NTV Uganda, 14.06.2022).

We know that the Uganda People’s Defence Force (UPDF) launched Operation Usalama Kwa Wote in July 2021 and they have continued ever since. The UPDF and the authorities have burned villages and killed civilians in their manhunt for cattle-rustlers. However, there been no oversight or proof of their operation really stopping violence or the murders for cattle in the region.

The only thing that has been shown is that the government has killed around 700 civilians and there is no direct justification or proof of the need to do so. There is no direct proof of the use of firearm or report on the use of the weapon. People are just killed and dying because the UPDF said so.

In this regard… the budget priorities are very clear. As the Karamoja is getting funds for the operations of the UPDF in the region. However, there is nothing scheduled or funds to cover or help the people in need. Karamoja is possibly getting into famine and people are now going hungry. That is a sign that the government has failed this people. They are now in the hands of the government.

The UPDF seems to be more important than the civilians it is defending. Since, it has funds and operational means, but the public don’t have what they need. Neither does the state has the mechanisms or the institutions to help them. That’s why they are starving and not getting help. This shortfall has to be covered by either a UN Organizations, CSOs or NGOs. Because, they have ability and funds to come to their aide. Since, the state don’t pay it no mind and would only care if it was profitable.

Karamoja have been targeted and the army has intervened as it has… because the minerals and mining operations needs land. The villages and the people have to flee lands and the use of former methods is to shield their operation. Now it is even more evident as Karamoja is getting money for the army, but not the people in need. This has been forecasted by FEWSNET and others. It isn’t like it happened without any forewarning.

Karamoja was in a danger-zone and the army operations there wouldn’t make it any better. No, the state has addressed its own needs, but the needs of the population. The region has burned because of the army and the soldiers haven’t helped the farmers or the cattle-keepers. Instead it has possibly worsened it and created more internally displaced people. Therefore, it is striking that the UPDF gets funds, as a reported half a million will live in food insecurity and live in hunger.

I don’t see the state doing much or taking action about it. This will most likely spiral into a famine. Because, the state doesn’t have mechanisms or the willpower to do what is necessary now. That’s because the ministries and the institutions haven’t been invested into and neither is there a working protocol for cases like these. That’s for the simple reason: The International Community and their aid organizations are the shortfall for the inept and corrupt elites of Kampala.

That’s why the Minister of Karamoja will do nothing and neither will anyone associated with it. They are awaiting orders from the Office of the Prime Minister and the State House. Which will wait and we shouldn’t expect any miracles. The army is stationed here and they will not bring hope to a troubled region. A region that has burned and now it’s soon starving too. It doesn’t get a minute of peace or hope. Peace.

Uganda: FEWS NET projected food security levels as stressed in the Greater Northern Region and a crisis in Karamoja

Staple food prices have continued to increase in recent months and are higher than prices recorded last year and five-year average levels across most of Uganda. Prices of staple sorghum and maize are now significantly above average in several key reference markets across the country. In Karamoja, terms of trade for sorghum against firewood, charcoal, and goats are below average and worse than last year, significantly restricting food access for poor households. After the first season bimodal harvest in June/July, food prices are expected to decline but are now expected to remain above average given expectations for below-average production, increased net exports, and impacts of the war in Ukraine on global supply chains and prices” (FEWS NET, 06.05.2022).

The Cassava Republic is getting hit hard by not only the rising commodity prices, but the weather. The agricultural production will be slowed down and that will hurt the farmers of the regions in the Northern Uganda and in the Karamoja sub-region. That is very evident and FEWS NET together with the World Food Programme is clearly having an oversight here. This here should worry the state, as it has targeted and had a military operation in Karamoja. Which is not mentioned here, but the burning region of Karamoja isn’t having a better times ahead of it. To the contrary things are only getting worse.

The Cassava Republic is also hit with an impactful war, which is not only hitting the exports of wheat, but in general. That’s why prices of commodities will go up and has gone up over the last year. Things are not getting better there either. Just read the quote below, which is a continuation of the first quote from FEWS NET on the matter.

In general, prices of food and non-food commodities have increased notably since late 2021. The main driving factors include rising transportation costs due to increasing fuel prices, seasonally declining market stocks, and reduced production prospects from the upcoming first season harvest following below average rainfall. More recently, impacts of the Russia-Ukraine crisis have driven further fuel price increases and increased the rate of general inflation of food and non-food commodities, further reducing household purchasing power. In March, retail prices of maize grain and sorghum increased farther above five-year average levels. Retail prices of beans and cassava generally remained below average in March, though prices of beans increased by 9-20 percent across monitored markets from February to March” (FEWS NET, 06.05.2022).

Here is the worrying statement:

However, rising food prices will likely result in some higher selling prices for famers, increasing access to income for those with near average production. For pastoralist households, pasture and water availability is expected to improve in May given the forecast of above-average rainfall. Overall, most households in bimodal areas are expected to access sufficient food and income to meet their essential food and non-food needs, with Minimal (IPC Phase 1) outcomes expected to persist at the area level throughout the projection period. However, given revised expectations for a third consecutive below-average production season as well as rising prices of food and non-food commodities including fuel, Stressed (IPC Phase 2) outcomes are now expected to persist throughout much of northern Uganda for the majority of the projection period. In Karamoja, availability of food and income is expected to remain seasonally limited as the lean season progresses. Given delays in the agricultural season, the lean season is now expected to last through July, longer than usual by about three weeks. During this time, insecurity is likely to continue constraining limiting income-earning, including from livestock production and sales. When schools reopen for the new term in early May, households will likely experience some improved food consumption due to WFP’s food and nutrition programming for school children, including school meals, take-home rations, and supplementary food for households with malnourished children. However, food prices are expected to continue increasing through around June until the harvest from bimodal areas begins to boost market supplies, with an increasing number of poor households likely to face consumption gaps and Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes during this time. Though some seasonal price declines are expected following this, prices are expected to remain above average. For many poor Karamoja households, below-average purchasing power will continue constraining access to food from market purchases. Around August/September, the start of harvesting in Karamoja is expected to support improved access to food from own consumption and income from crop sales and reduce the number of households facing consumption gaps, though Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes are expected to persist at the area level even during the post-harvest period. Overall, widespread Crisis (IPC Phase 3) outcomes are now expected to persist through at least September, with worst-affected households facing Emergency (IPC Phase 4) outcomes” (FEWS NET, 06.04.2022).

We are seeing changes and the next coming months will be impactful to say the least. As the farmers and everyone else will struggle. There will be lack of food and a distress in some parts of the Republic, but it can become really dire in Karamoja. The Karamoja where the army has attacked, burned villages and gone after the citizens. That’s where things are getting worse and where they will have a terrible food insecurity to the levels of crisis. They can possibly get into Emergency, which should worry anyone. This just really speaks of how the state is failing its citizens and things are not getting any better.

The state should act upon this and think of safeguards. Nevertheless, don’t think they will. They rather send more soldiers and have more birthday bashes for Muhoozi. Than being concerned with the lack of food or ability to plough their fields. No, the state is more busy scheming and enterprising for their own. That’s why this sort of news needs to be spread. Because, the citizens of Karamoja and the Greater North will be hurt by this. That is the message from FEWS NET and it should be heard. Peace.

Opinion: Karamoja is burning over mineral explorations…

A total of 17,083 square kilometers of land in Karamoja is licensed for mineral exploration and extraction activities, according to official data. Twenty-six companies currently have exploratory or mining rights in the region. In 2018, Chinese mining company Sunbelt was given 3.3 square kilometers of land to set up a $13 million dollar marble mining factory in Rupa sub-county. A year later, the company expanded its operations to cover an additional 4.1 square kilometers, ostensibly after a deal with local leaders. Hundreds of families have since been pushed out of their ancestral homes, local officials say. Locals accuse Rupa Community development trust, a community trustee group created three years ago, of conniving with investors to steal their land” (Diana Taremwa Karakire – ‘Mining Rush Threatens Indigenous Peoples in Karamoja, Uganda’ 01.09.2021).

What I feared the most seems to be reason for the joint operation of the Uganda Police Force (UPF) and Uganda People’s Defence Force (UDPF) in the Karamoja sub-region. Which is an continues operation and it is persisting. The state is even furthering it’s investments into it by deploying 6,000 Local Defence Units or LDUs in Karamjoa. Therefore, the burning and bleeding will persist for a long time.

The lack of accountability and transparency is very clear. The obvious reasons for that is the licensed land and territories given to mineral extraction corporation over the indigenous people. The people and the citizens are neglected. They are perpetrators and the unlawful one in the mind of the state, but not by their rights as people.

The Government and the Authorities are coming in as a colonial government. They are occupying and violently removing people. The state is blaming the cattle rustling, but it is obviously more too it. Because, it is not like the government would create so much and damage over some livestock. However, it would do so over the mineral extraction and possible gold-rush in Karamoja.

We know they have given this state operation the name of “Usalama Kwa Wote” to disarm and take away illegal guns, but I wouldn’t be shocked if it was an alternate motive. A cash enterprise and a possible profit objective of the state. As they know the values of the land and what it possesses. When knowing that… they might find it easier to scare people away and not take ownership of land. Make them displaced and ensure their fear to return. As the mineral exploration and exploitation can start. In such a manner, that the government and the companies can start their trading.

The unfortunate families, villages and the Karimojong is just dying. While they are defending their land and we don’t have any idea about the amount of fatalities. As the GoU, the State House and UPDF doesn’t release any sort of update on their Joint Operation there. Only in the beginning and stopped when the public outcry ceased to exist.

The Karamoja sub-region continues to burn, be looted and is destroyed by government entities. While they are blaming old cultural factors and blaming the herders. That just shows their sinister motives. Because, we are not supposed to know about the vast licensing agreements and the planned mineral exploitation, which has been sanctioned without the concern of the locals or the Karimojong in general. They just have to accept the loss of land, livelihood and where they have lived for generations.

Because, that is the “steady progress” and “securing your future” means for Karamoja these days. The state don’t mind violating or destroying, as long as it has a prosperous future ahead of it. Peace.

Opinion: Karamoja is bleeding and nothing is being done…

The Karamoja Sub-Region has been burning and bleeding of late. This has been as a result of the Uganda Peoples’ Defence Force and Uganda Police Force, which are doing a joint-operation to stop cattle-rustlers, but clearly acting out of their means. As the 7 Karamoja districts are hurt as a result.

These districts are Kaabong, Kotido, Abim, Moroto, Napak, Nakapiripirit, and Amudat. All of them are touched by the state sponsored violence and savage killings. People are becoming internally displaced. Houses are being burnt and people are forced to flee. The amount of fatalities are unknown, as the UPDF have only dropped one update and the numbers from there is certainly an understatement.

The Joint Mission Update was what the authorities had done between 19th and 29th March and we are now on the 3rd April and the violence is still occurring at an uncertain rate. The verified 309 people must have add-ons as people are seeking shelters in mosques and elsewhere. Karimojong are really under fire here.

There are even a viral video clip of some soldiers in Abim district who killed an alleged cattle-rustler and burned the remains. While showing the skull in one of the hands of the soldiers as the burning fire of the remains was continuing in the back. That sort of video clip is haunting and show what sort of sinister acts that is going on.

We know that Commander of Land Forces Lt. Gen. Muhoozi Kainerubaga has promised them “hell” and his serving that on a plate. They don’t need to wait for the after-life to be in danger or meet the devil. The forces of Muhoozi is the agents of the Hell is already there and to get away from them would be like heaven.

As before in the month. There been speculations of mineral resources, findings of petrol and wider implications of foreign investors possible getting viable land. If not there is also reports of possible heists of livestock and thieving cows from the sub-region. As well, there is also reports of poisoning of goats there.

Whatever the reasons why it’s happening now. The citizens and the ones that dies… it happens without due process and without the courts of justice. The civilians are guilty before proven innocent in Karamoja right now. This is injustice and extra judicial killings. With the murder of over 300 people. Some might easily say massacres is going on and we don’t know to what extent. Since there is little to none reporting on the actual actions going on. The fatalities is therefore totally hidden and the bloodshed is happening in darkness.

The justification for the amount of death and it’s scale should be really crucial. As these amounts of deaths would be close to war or skirmishes between enemies of a civil-war. Alas, the state is behind a huge operation, which is causing harm that will linger on in the sub-region for decades. The fatalities and the insecurity isn’t becoming better, but worse. The devastating results will linger on and the damage cannot be mended. The souls taken and the land scorned will not be viable quickly. The needs for dialogue and peace. There isn’t a need for war or more guns. It is only causing more fatalities and more death.

That seems to be the devil in Muhoozi. He comes with death and thrives on the burning region of Karamoja. That’s the devil in the details… and how it can be perceived. Peace.

The Parliament of Uganda: Press Statement on the deteriorating security situation in Karamoja (31.03.2022)

Karamoja: The Karamoja sub-region is burning and bleeding in silence…

The 1966 District Annual Report concluded on a note of surrender to circumstances; “All of us would like to see Karamoja developed as fast as possible so as to catch up with the rest of Uganda but the major problem is how to do it” (Wozei 1977; 218)

The Police Anti Stock Theft Unit (ASTU) command in Karamoja has urged its officers to express discipline and observe human rights in the course of carrying out their duties” (97.8 Kazo FM Omushomesa, 31.03.2022).

There are unverified reports that over 309 Karimojong have been killed and we are still counting. That is only the first estimates after the reported Uganda People’s Defence Force (UPDF) operation in the region.

The Karamjoa sub-region is now hit with state-sanctioned violence. The sub-region has 17 MPs and one State Minster for Region Agnes Nandutu who are clearly not stopping the massacre and killings of the state. Which is killing people without trial or due process. They are just turning up and killing them. Just like it is reports of poisoning of goats and such too. We have also seen pictures of burning houses too. So, everything is done to target and hurt the Karimojong.

We know that Commander of Land Forces Lt. Gen. Muhoozi Kainerubaga has been proud of the operation and what has been happening. He has been the voice of the government that has delivered this terror to the Sub-Region. It is not like this is his first doing this or such. He participated with the Special Forces Command (SFC) in Kasese in 2016. So, this man knows blood and bloodshed.

Some are claiming this operation is happening because of either gold or petroleum, which is found in the region. The government wants to disarm the cattle-keepers and take their lands. In a manner of which they are disarmed and cannot defend their land. Therefore, this could be a ploy to take valuable land with mineral resources, which is to be given to foreign investors. This is why the authorities and army is attacking the region with such brazen means.

So, if things are so, it shouldn’t shock anyone that the state and the leaders are willing to do this. They have used vicious means in Amuru and with Apaa land to other investors there. Therefore, the UPDF could serve a favour to some oil companies or other sort of mineral extraction company, which has gotten a go from the State House. However, that is yet to be proven.

Nevertheless, this wouldn’t shock anyone and we have seen the state act out before to prove a point and get their way. This is killings without justifications and done without legal precedence. It is only done to silence and extra judicial kill the ones who defy the state. Therefore, this is showing a dangerous means to an end. We don’t even know the possible amount of fatalities, as we have only the UPDF numbers from 29th March 2022.

This is showing what the GoU is willing to do to it’s own citizens and there is no way they can defend this. This is extra judicial killings on a massive scale. People should be warned and the plights of Karamjo can easily come closer to home. The November 2020 killings in Kampala by the UPDF says it all. Everyone can be touched and lose their lives. If the state isn’t getting their way. Peace.

Opinion: Andrew, the man who will defend the indefensible too make Mzee look good!

I will not look into the whole piece that Andrew Mwenda dropped on Facebook today. Because, that is a waste of time. However, I will look at few extracts and dismiss them. Since, the realities are far-fetched. Just like pointing at cars, carrying goats or saying corruption is good for economic growth. Is all staple defence of the editor and owner of the Independent Magazine.

Surely, Mwenda knows all this, but hopes people are eating of his hands. He hopes people are so naive and lack free thought, to think that his ideas and his ways of explaining things have become bonkers. He should join in with Ofwono Opondo, get reassigned to the New Vision and UBC. There is where he belong. There is no independent thought in this man, only if it is deflect the actual issues of the day.

Just look at this: “While NRM’s political fortunes are declining, the opposition is not inspiring much confidence. The growth in the opposition’s is far below the growth and spread of disaffection with NRM and President Yoweri Museveni. The radical extremism of the two most popular cults of the opposition – Defiance and its bastard child, People Power – has led to levels of intolerance of divergent views that most Ugandans have decided to keep away from electoral politics” (Andrew Mwenda, 30.09.2019).

What is striking, how his not seeing his own delusion, but maybe some favours and envelopes makes the man close his eyes. It is like his only seeing negative and negate all acts of the state against the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) – Defiance and the People Power Movement. These are only an ill or evil, for someone who blamed Museveni of killing Garang and saying he was the common denominator of the troubles of the Republic. There years has worn off.

His seeing differently and for a reason. The opposition isn’t always right. That is a given, it has policies and ideas whose not all good. But that doesn’t defend the ways Mwenda attacks them. Like they are organizations with sacred secrets, which only the anointed could get. That is not how these two opposition parties work. It is more closer to the “orders from above” and the personality cult built around Museveni. That Mwenda should questioned, but when your paid writer for him. You will, overlook the narrative and cast the troubles on the other side automatically.

He speaks of intolerance within the opposition. It isn’t strange the opposition sees issues different from the NRM. As the NRM and the authorities are arresting, detaining and directly using oppressive means to silence the opposition. All means, all laws and all organizing proper party works are monitored, followed and if you misstep you get arrested. While the NRM can do whatever it will. This is not something Mwenda touches, because that destroys the Saint Museveni, as he sees him these days.

Uganda’s opposition is deluded. They believe they occupy such a superior moral ground, that they are so awesome and cool, their position is so self-evidently righteous; so they do not need to win over people. They believe everyone should support them as of right because they are “liberators.” They believe, and I think correctly, that most Ugandans are frustrated with Museveni and his NRM. However, they mistake this to mean most Ugandans love them” (Andrew Mwenda, 30.09.2019).

If the NRM is so loved and Museveni has such an popularity. Why does he need the army to make every single by-election looking like a war-zone? If his so loved, why does his RDCs order the radios from blocking opposition from being on-air? Why if the NRM is such a popular party, why does it give monetary and things to the voters to get votes? If the NRM is so popular, why does it has to detain the People Power coordinators and other opposition activist ahead and in the final days of the polls?

Why, Mr. Mwenda, why isn’t this mentioned? That because, that breaks the ideal of this so-called popularity. Also, why no mention of the open bazaar of pre-ticked ballots into the By-Election that the NRM “won”.

If his so loved, why does he have to pay the citizens and voters to get their vote? That doesn’t make sense to me. But neither does saying corruption and counting cars in the streets say anything about the growth potential in the Republic. However, you believed in this and now you writing such things like this.

Mwenda is a lost soul, but we know why. His free-thinking days are gone. His blind-sided and we has to expect that. He will defend murder for the case of the NRM. He will defend theft and thieving for the case of the NRM. He will defend election rigging for the case of the NRM. No matter what the NRM does, it is better than anyone else. Because, Mwenda cannot have his place or prestige without the NRM. His bound by the fate of the NRM.

The yellow has to pump in his veins, if not his ability to have a proper meal ticket goes away. That is why he cannot strike against the NRM. Peace.

Opinion: Mzee’s marvellous attempt to celebrate victories in the recent by-elections!

The NRM will continue to perform while the Opposition continues to lie. Performance will outlive lying. The NRM, however, must address the organization weaknesses” (Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, 28.09.2019).

There is something special about President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni. I don’t know if he knows it himself. But usually, he deflects all the ills of his own regime and puts it on the Opposition. If there was anyone who has eaten foreign aid, whose taken foreign loans and grants. It is him. If it wasn’t for foreign backers, his army and his security outfits wouldn’t be as functional and operational as it is. Therefore, he should be careful to critic the need for foreign backing. Because, his government have thrived on it. To say something else is an lie, but Museveni lives on lies and spread lies. The truth hurts and he doesn’t want to do that.

The performance of NRM wasn’t stellar, but that is not needed. They control all parts of government, they have appointed men doing the tally and they can finesse results as they see fit. The charade can continue, while mighty Mzee can profess his stories, his narratives as the latest victor of the 1980s. That is what he does. In the text dropped today, he dropped a history lesson, I will not indulged into that. But maybe Mzee forgot in the bush, he asked (Pike) to tell the British to give a 1,000,000 bullets and arms to beat Obote II, as referenced in his recent book.

Therefore, when he asked for foreign help. It was always dandy, because it helped his cause and his mission. His own victories and his own self-styled presidency for life. But, nobody else should do that. Because, that is undemocratic. Even getting arms from Libya during the Bush-War would now be seen as unpatriotic, by this old man, but his forgetting. He did that, but will not confess to it.

I’m just taking snippets of the text he released, because its the a-typical text from him. With all achievements, percentages and long-term change since 1986. Not, what it has done in the recent decade and who assisted the government in doing so. Even if the USAID or anyone else contributed the main funds, he will deflect that, because the GoU and NRM did it all.

What the Opposition cannot kill, no matter how hard they and their foreign backers work, is the enduring love the population of Uganda have for the NRM on account of its programmes- right from 1981- when we came out as a distinct political-military organization. Especially now, with the massive development and transformation taking place in the Country, it is pathetic to see these Opposition members , zooming around the country at break-neck speeds on our brand- new tarmac roads built by the NRM from zero, saying that NRM has done nothing!! It is so shameful and pathetic but it is good for the NRM” (Yoweri Kaguta Museveni 28.09.2019).

It is unique for a President who rely so much of the funding of these infrastructure projects and developments from foreigners. Even the recent three packages of oil roads are solely paid 85% on Chinese loans and 15 % of the Government of Uganda given mostly to Chinese contractors. I could go on, but that is boring. That is why, when the development projects are so costly, prices per kilometres are spiralling out of hand, the Kampala-Jinja Expressway is so expensive. That my mind shattered reading the price. However, the opposition should praise these marvels of bloated priced roads? Seriously?

Who will pay it, the citizens and the future generations, when Mzee is long dead and his remains are praised by Andrew and Odrek. The rest is wondering, how society to get tricked to buy into these schemes and letting the state eat of all the money. Just for some tarmac and road-construction. Not like these loans and developments are sending people to Mars. No, they are letting South Sudanese businessmen into Gulu.

As Mzee continues:

Having failed to convince the people, then the Opposition plans to cheat and be violent. Here, they are assisted by a Police force that had been infiltrated by, Kawukumi (emuungwe). Why should a Police personnel tolerate somebody using bad language in political campaign? You have no right to speak rudely to any Ugandan or to beat anybody. I was told that the Opposition elements were trying to riot and destroy property in the area because they had been blocked by slightly better organization to repeat the cheating they did in Arua, Jinja and Bugiri. Their schemes will fail. The little skirmishes the Opposition engineers, help me to see the resolute cadres of the NRM that will take that glorious Movement to a higher level. I thank all the NRM cadres that stood resolutely against the schemes of the unpatriotic elements” (Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, 28.09.2019).

When speaking of conviction, the party known for voting bribery, voter tourism and pre-ticked ballots. Shouldn’t speak of cheating, neither with their force of using the state apparatus to arrest, detain and silence the opposition in the important hours of counting and on election day. Which doesn’t happen to the NRM, even if they use state resources, cars and other venues to trigger voters their way. So, when saying it was rigging in the lost by-elections, his directly saying, that only happens when the opposition are winning? Did you see that?

The man who makes and orders from above, to send the military police, the flying squad and whatever other outfits to arrest. He claims they are violent in their language. This coming from the man, who calls opposition vermin, parasites and so-on. The Leopards Anus, should clean his own mouth, before calling out names. He should look into his own track-record. He calls the other parties, the opposition unpatriotic, which means they are opposed to him. Because, him as the fake father of the nation, is the one your supposed to have sworn loyalty to and not to the ideal of the Republic. “For God and for Country”.

Enough of this forged narrative. We seen this enough times, when does this ever get old? When can I stop debunking the same sort of spread sheet?

Well, time will tell. Peace.

Hoima By-Election: Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine Statement (27.09.2019)

Fellow Ugandans,

I have restrained myself from speaking about what has been going on in Hoima for the past two days. Now that a candidate was declared winner, I will say a few things.

First, let me congratulate comrade Nyakato Asinasi Kamanda, our candidate for Hoima District Woman MP. Thank you for putting up such a spirited fight. You did not have even 1% of the resources poured into this election by the NRM regime, but you did your best- waking up each day to move to the nearest and farthest points of Hoima district. You are a true fighter. The people of Bunyoro have a great asset in you. I congratulate the people of Hoima; the people of Bunyoro for making every effort to exercise your constitutional right to vote despite untold levels of intimidation by the regime. Thank you for embracing the message of change is such an incredible way. I can understand the level of disappointment you have today as you wake up to have another leader imposed on you; your will usurped. But courage my friends- ultimately, the battle shall be won!

Second, I congratulate and appreciate the forces of change for coming together in a rare display of unity in Hoima. I thank the many leaders in FDC, ANT, DP and other forces who have been positive to this cooperation.There were challenges of course. There are those who have decided at every point to put their personal or party interests above the interests of the people of Uganda. We condemn this behavior and moving forward, we must have discussions and decide what is more important.

As #PeoplePower, we came in to support an FDC candidate simply because we place the struggle for a better Uganda above anything else. It defeated all logic to see some leaders, apparently in the opposition, do everything to frustrate comrade Nyakato’s victory simply because she embraced and identified with #PeoplePower.

Third, I want to join my fellow leaders and other Ugandans in condemning the very high levels of election malpractices that were displayed in this election. As I did mention a few days ago, security forces have for these past days deployed in Hoima, not to keep law and order but to help Museveni and his regime rig this election. So many of our candidate’s supporters and agents were arrested. Many were brutalized. Some of them are held in detention centres outside Hoima. On the day of voting, many were brutally chased away from polling stations. The tally center was raided.

Our teams on the ground spent the day in running battles with vehicles which had pre-ticked ballots in favor of the NRM candidate. Available information shows that they took advantage of the vastness of the district to stuff ballots early morning in remote areas, and were caught later in the day. Several people recorded these things on video, which is why Museveni and his regime are moving to ban cameras from polling stations come 2021.
Her team has Declaration Forms which show different results from those which were declared. We shall support the candidate in every way if she seeks to challenge these violations. But let me also make it clear that these gross violations only make us stronger! They give us more reason to fight on. They prove to us that our cause is a right cause! Therefore we are not fazed- we are only challenged to work even harder.

Therefore, I want to encourage the people of Uganda not to lose sight of the cause and the urgency with which we must work. This whole night, I have been on phone with our foot soldiers and supporters who are understandably very angry and frustrated with the regime. Some are very disappointed and frustrated with the behavior of some elements within the forces of change. My message to these comrades has been that these are phases we must go through in a struggle as big and as serious as this. We are dealing with a desperate regime which is always on the look out for who to compromise. Therefore, the most important thing is to pick lessons. These lessons are indeed invaluable as we prepare for the final onslaught come 2021.

I have invited the #PeoplePower leadership for a meeting at which we shall assess this election and decide how to move forward. The good news is that dictators throughout history have done such things in an even smarter way than Museveni- but ultimately they fell and were dropped in the dustbin of history. The most important thing for us is to be smarter and more organized than the dictatorship. I am persuaded beyond doubt that we shall soon overcome.

Opinion: The Party formed in reactions to of a rigged election are now praising their own rigged by-elections!

We have had two more By-Elections in the Republic. This being in Hoima and in Kaabong, as the new Woman MPs was elected and the Declaration Form was delivered to the public today. After the darkness arrived and the uncertainty of what the real outcome would be. Since, the National Resistance Movement and the President had invested heavy into the both elections. Sent the army, bribing voters, pre-ticketing ballots and whatever else of techniques to “win”.

Surely, the number and the statistics will be weird and inconsistent, just like the amount of invalid votes and the spoiled number combined with total amount of voters. Also in combination of the voter turnout in 2016 versus in 2019. That also shows something is up. The numbers seems strange and also the ways the state did operate in the by-elections. We have the right to question it.

The way the NRM and its spokespersons did proclaim the victory. The way the Electoral Commission debunked released numbers from polling stations, as the waiting game for the real numbers happen through the night. As in the morning the Declaration Form was released and the victory was verified.

As in the glory of this false victory… the forged and rigged election, the President has to act righteous and as a big-man. That is why he was writing this:

The people of Hoima, mwebale muno, thank you for voting the National Resistance Movement, and my daughter Harriet Mugenyi. You have chosen to consolidate the NRM achievements, by voting a pro-development MP. Our people of Kaabong, Alakara nooi, you have shown that even with the lies from the Opposition, you know where the light is. I congratulate My daughter Tubo Christine Nakwang for winning the woman MP by-election. I also congratulate the NRM structures in the two districts for doing a good job and delivering these victories. The NRM is stronger than ever and its vision is correct” (Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, 27.09.2019).

I wonder when the NRM says it was does, if delivering victories by blocking, arresting, voter bribing and direct rigging of the counting the ballots. Then its not really a victory. It is a big-game and misuse of power, which isn’t new, but this administration should have known better. Because, this one exists because of previous administration; which was supposed to have rigged the election in 1980. If there is one post-1980 should do, is to avoid the same sins, but instead it revamps it at every junction.

In the same instance, if the government was honest and having a level playing-field. The People Power Movement coordinators would be arrested, they wouldn’t detained and harmed by security agents, either soldiers, Special Forces Command (SFC) and police officers. If the NRM believed in their vision and their party achievements. It wouldn’t need to arrest so many people, block opposition people from campaigning on the radio and so-on. However, this is what it does.

Not strange that they would edit the results and “secure” the victory. Like they really won. The NRM can’t win in a fair game. It cannot, its hard to believe, because By-Elections becomes like War-Zones and your affiliation deems you fit or unfit to be close to the polls. Even if the person is already registered or confirmed decent by the rules of the Electoral Commission. Still, the authorities are picking up and pursuing opposition coordinators and so-on.

This is why, with the questionable numbers, the ill-actions of the state and the proclaimed victory on TV hours before the EC released the official numbers. We can surely say, this was written in the stars and just like the past elections was done too.

The President who went to the Bush for justice, is now promoting injustice and rigged elections. Which is weird, but power corrupts and that is shown by this mere polls alone. Peace.

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