The NRM Day, the National Resistance Movement (NRM) day, the Liberation Day. The day that the National Resistance Army liberated Uganda. Are in the making and being prepared so that the President can hold his speech and be crowded by his soldiers, his Crime Preventers and who ever he has bought out from obscurity in the recent months.
So the news today, was rare or unique. It is more of the same. That other people are not allowed. It is just like when he hold the State of Nation Address, all channels and broadcast on TV and Radio had to send his speech. The same can surely also happen in this instance. Because the only man who is clearly free and can be opinionated is Museveni. The rest have to follow his suit and his orders. The State House commands. So that the President and his men, are now putting orders on how they are celebrating the 32nd Liberation Day isn’t surprising. It follows a pattern of control from above, from His Excellency, who cannot be that excellent, when he has to micro-manage every detail and get everyone in-line for every event. Every function and every order, has to be rubber-stamped by him. It’s just his despotic mind, who speaks democracy, but orders everyone around and wants everybody to accept his hollow mind. That is just the way it is, so when Daily Monitor says this today:
“The government has cautioned the opposition and any other groups against any plot to hold parallel liberation day celebrations. The caution was sounded by the minister for presidency Esther Mbayo during a press conference at media centre ahead of the celebrations slated for Friday January 26, 2018. She said every time government organizes a national function, there are groups that threaten to organized parallel arrangements. She said this will not be tolerated this time round. “I am just warning whoever is organizing to stage a parallel function to desist from it because the long arm of the law will catchup with him,” minister Mbayo said. She said there will be only one national function accepted that day and it will be held at Boma grounds in Arua Municipality. “So whoever wants to stage parallel arrangements should stand warned,” Mbayo said” (Jumbe, 2018).
This is the memo, the gist and the story. That the Minister Mbayo is warning and coming with stern signals of how to behave. The public can only have one key celebration, nothing in Kololo or on another field. The only one matter at Boma Ground in Arua. The rest has to cease, where the President is, is the only place to be liberated, the others have to follow orders and be under the spell of the President. No freedom, no celebration in Kampala, Jinja or Mbarara, no no, only celebrate in Arua at Boma Ground.
The Liberation Day celebration only matters at the function of the President. If he isn’t there, it doesn’t matter. It is not about liberation, if the supposed liberator isn’t there. The kingpin of the NRA has to be at the function if it supposed to have any value. President Museveni have to show up and be graceful, spill his beans and everyone got to listen to his wisdom. If not, they are not liberated. The liberation was for him and his men, not for the republic. The people was just tools for his liberation. Therefore, a party is only a party, if he started or joined the party. Peace.
You know there is something special, you know there is something out of bound and something compelling, when the Members of Parliament (MPs) who has no quarrels with eating without taxation, without thinking of their salaries compered to the ones who they represent. The constituency of the MP must feel betrayed as their allowances and their benefits are enormous, to say it at least, they are gigantic! But take a look at the latest big payment for the MPs!
“Parliament — MPs are smiling all the way to the bank after the government authorised the release of an extra Shs45b to Parliament, with each of the 449 lawmakers set to get an additional Shs100m, ostensibly to buy cars for constituency travels” (…) “In a June 13 letter titled: ‘Additional cash limit of Shs45.8b for the Parliamentary Commission’, Mr Keith Muhakanizi, the Secretary to the Treasury, authorised Ms Jane Kibirige, the Clerk to Parliament, to spend the cash as part of non-wage recurrent budget in the fourth quarter of the Financial Year 2016/2017. The clearance comes barely two weeks to the end of the Financial Year” (Arinaitwe & Manzil, 2017).
So the Members of Parliament are clearly getting another pay-day without passing to much legislation or any sort of consideration of the proposed budget or pledges they had for the financial year 2017/2018. President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni and the NRM Caucus have clearly made together with the Parliamentary Commission to make a new pay-day for the MPs, yet again!
The National Resistance Movement and their MPs clearly like to get extra brown-envelopes without any considerations of the state of the budget or the way the funds are raised. It is not shocking, it seems like an ordinary event at this point. Not like it is the first time, the MPs uses their Noble place in the august house to enrich themselves and add cost to the state. Therefore, the added debt and interest payments should be feared by the MPs. Instead, they are adding debt and creating more interest without concern of the citizens.
The citizens are going to pay extra for this, they are the ones that are ripped off at broad-daylight. They are eating directly of the state reserve and does it with impunity. Also worth noticing, President Museveni is not sanctioning against it, since he can do as pleases. Since he is eating directly and misuse s it whenever he wants. Peace.
I know by now that you doesn’t’ care much about the National Economy or about Transparency as you excluded yourself from the citizens you represented when you gave yourself a giant tax-break with no-income tax. That is the way you are I guess, reckless misbehaving children who are creating havoc in the candy store pointing at all the different kinds of treats and wants them all, even if it make them sick of sugar; they still want it all!
You guys, ladies and gentleman, the so called nobles, the so-called honourable citizens of the Republic have no totally forgotten your place and your reason for co-existing in the Republic. You might think that your above the people, the citizens, the one that you represent exist because of. Even if you think you exists and breathes eats and have pleasure because of President Yoweri Museveni, let’s be clear he is just using you!
I am not mad that you want to have air-conditioner in the North or the Eastern Building of the Parliament, it’s hot and you guys doesn’t want to turn into hot-air or Wokoloso. I know that, you want to peaceful creatures, which doesn’t kill Kasese or support arms for the rebels in Democratic Republic of Congo. You want to keep cool and be great support of the Republic.
I am furious over you wish to grand yourself 4 station wagons for whatever purpose of trading socks at Kololo Airstrip or having secretaries to drive some of you around on your shopping spree at Game or Garden City. That is all up to you and the use of the Station Wagons that you acquire to Parliament. You already have a massive fortune in Car money and doling it out when you started your terms as MPs because your official duty needs that the public offer you luxurious transport. Not take Taxis, Specials or boda-boda’s to Parliament Avenue, which is beneath you. You just like eating the monies of the public who would so!
I understand that the Parliament isn’t built for nor have the facilities for all the MPs now. Since you’re Executive, the chief of Rwakitura and the whole nation has let the nation sore with districts and parishes since his dire beginning of power in the 80s. It was nearly any districts when he entered the building as a Defence Minister under Dr. Milton Obote, now it is more than pages in the Kampala Eye and whatnot Tourist Information brochures that are delivered at Entebbe International Airport. Therefore the amount of MPs has soured with the amount of districts; a cow hasn’t been butchered as many ways the districts in Uganda has been during the last decades under Museveni.
So that the MPs needs office space and rebuild their accommodations is responsible acts of the Parliament, though costly because the share amount of MPs created under the President all of his terms. The MPs are in this one reacting with sense, but they should question the need for all of their services, even if it means giving up their wealthy new acquired lifestyle in the Capital.
What makes doesn’t make sense to me, in a nation where the state doesn’t have enough funds to allocate for the Presidential Jet or Helicopter of the farmer of Rwakitura. So when the current reflection of that in mind, the 10th Parliament are allocating funds and finding ways of giving Speaker Rebecca Kadaga and Deputy Speaker Jacob Oulanyah. Because these noble creatures and honourable minds needs to take into air and land wherever. Since their roles in Parliament is damn important that they need to follow the Presidential Jet and Helicopter that the State House cannot allocate enough funds too. So they can all stand still at the Helicopter Landing-sites in Kampala. At the Merry for the Kadaga and Oulanyah who dearly need them for their service of the country. They need to be mosquitos who can travel in the air and suck funds out the taxpayers coffers like the mosquito suck blood of their pray. If the Speaker and Deputy Speaker are lucky they will give the nation malaria as of the purchase and maintenance so the inflation keeps rising and the dwindling economy needs more debt to feed the fiscal imbalance of the state budget. The same state budget the Parliament allocated funds to their helicopters. Their needed helicopter that they will silence the MPs and show their way in Parliament; the Parliament will controlled by the waving wings of silence and the blood sucking drones the Speakers have become.
If you don’t understand the spending is of the chain, when the Mulago Hospital still lacks needed equipment, when other state institutions is depleted and civil servants not getting salaries. At that moment of time… the Speakers doesn’t need more perks, they need to be fiscal responsible and show the Executive just ways, since he is not caring about the Bank of Uganda’s hard work to stagger Inflation and the running debt rate. So when they are using public funds as their playground, these runs rapid wild in spending to be sure they can play all the cool games and be spoiled kids. That is what the Parliament and MPs are right now. Time to stop, rehash ideas and think of accountability, transparency and being fiscal responsible! Peace.
Something is just wrong, something is seriously wrong, as the misappropriated funds and public coffers in Uganda; there is something sinister going on. It is okay that a government and administration cannot make it rain or make sun shine, but they can make sure the people together with public gathering technics make sure when there is plenty of water. It’s in tanks and other barrels until needed for the crops and enough for drinking. This is practices mankind has done since the Roman Empire. It’s not spectacular, but convenient.
On the other hand, since Roman Time, there has always been corruption, and men has always been corrupted by gold, silver and sparkly things. So as the citizens are hungry, the starvation isn’t only in Isingiro, where the starvation is dangerously high, there are other districts severely hit by the draught and the lack of rain.
Hunger in the districts:
“Already, 1.3 million Ugandans, the minister said, need urgent food aid and so far, 600kgs of maize flour and 300 kilogrames of beans have been sent to Isingiro Districts where some people have starved to death” (…) “According to Mr Kibazanga, 65 per cent of people in Karamoja sub region have one meal or half a meal in a day as opposed to three meals while 35 per cent of the population in the districts of Katakwi, Amuria, Kumi, Bukedea, parts of Serere and Kaberamaido are in the same phase with Karamoja sub-region” (…) “Mr Kibazanga also revealed that 50 per cent of the people of Koboko, Yumbe, Moyo, Maracha, Arua, Zombo, Nebbi, Adjumani, Amuru, Nyoya, Gulu, Pader, Lamwo, Kitgum, Agago, Soroti, Ngora, Amolatar, Pallisa, Butaleja, Rakai, Isingiro and Tororo have access to a meal a day. The districts of Oyam, Apac, Kiryandongo, Masindi, Bulisa, Kyankwanzi, Nakaseke, Kiboga, Mubende, Luwero, Kyegegwa, Sembabule, Kiruhura, Lwengo, Ntugamo, Kamuli and Kibuuku are in a minimal phase of food insecurity, meaning the people can still afford all meals though stocks are running low” (Tajuba, 2016).
So when the Government knows about that and they continue with their inappropriate idea of giving new cars for the Members of Parliament, something that the 10th Parliament MPs have been waiting for. It is in their duty and now getting a free-ride for their services; this they do while districts upon districts lack food and water, while they are starving… the reckless thieving of state coffers instead of supplying needed food from the budgets !
New Cars for the MPs:
“Parliament has received a release of Shs25 billion for payment of vehicle grant to members of parliament. The money will cater for at least 250 MPs out of 431. According to parliament’s director of communcations Chris Obore, the Parliamentary Commission will first pay new MPs. The new MPs to get first are those without election petitions in court. The old MPs will be paid when the Commission gets a new release. It emerged recently that each Member of Parliament will bag Shs200m instead of Shs150m as had earlier been budgeted by the Parliamentary Commission. This means Parliament will spend more than Shs85 billion on all the legislators” (the Insider, 2016).
As much as there are money in the system for unnecessary expenditure from the 10th Parliament, that with no thought or consideration thinks about the consequences for the once they are supposed to represent. They apparently wish to become greedy like the former EX-MPs who we’re taken to court and charged with massive thieving, though where the money really went nobody knows. They surely pocketed some of it, but the where it we’re supposed to go, is not hard to know. Because the pay-outs we’re to ghosts, ghosts are invisible creatures not of the living.
“Anti Corruption Court in Kampala has found three former top employees of ministry of public service including Jimmy Lwamafa, the ex-permanent secretary guilty of all the ten charges slapped against them by the state. Presiding judge, Lawrence Gidudu summarised in his ruling that the fraud to steal the Shs88.2 billion was hatched in the public service, smoothened in finance ministry and executed in Cairo bank where the money was finally paid out to ghost pensioners” (Ndagire & Wesaka, 2016).
So the living in the districts are either this days getting screwed by their own representatives of the 10th Parliament, as they are more keen on perks and riches than helping the citizens they represent, that is what their President Museveni has been teaching for three decades now. So the people are starving and not getting valuable food or needed water for their daily life, while the MPs are riding in flash, posh cars in Kampala. That is happening while their predecessors are being detained for thieving from coffers to bail-out ghost pensioners, while the results of the matter are not told where the money went.
We can wonder since it is not told, that somebody did their bidding and stole the monies for the bigger plan of their President, and when they we’re not needed to do their service they gotten taken to court. That wouldn’t be surprising as that has happen before in the times udner the Executive Museveni. It’s just new names who done similar things in the past. The billions of shillings are levels of stealing while the hunger is running rapid is worrying; together with the wishes of lavish lifestyle by the men who supposed to represent them. Instead they represent themselves and not using their powers and reach to service the famine ridden districts, because they only see their own tummy. Peace.
“It has emerged that the president may re-appoint some of the ministers who were dropped by Parliament’s Appointments Committee last week over concerns about their competence. The Government Chief Whip, confirmed the development to NTV’s” (NTV Uganda, 2016).
“Newly appointed Minister without Portfolio Hajj Abdul Nadduli says he has been expecting this appointment. NTV caught up with the former LC5 chairman in Luweero to share his thoughts ahead of a vetting exercise at Parliament” (NTV Uganda, 2016)
As the day has gone and some first results is coming. I will not comment on them now, as they are not as interesting as the reactions and violations of democratic values and vile display of disgrace of the public will from the authorities and the ruling party in Uganda.
As the Uganda Communication Commission together with Electoral Commission banned Twitter, WhatsApp and Facebook, even mobile-money transfers services. As this could give biased news and dangerous bribing of voters, as the voters has not been bribed during the pre-election period at all. Well, the public found other ways of finding the social media and avoid the issue with Uganda Telecom (UTL/Mango), MTN and Airtel. As they download different VPN services on their phone and still got in to the social media outlets. The actual numbers of downloads this day was staggering 1,432,653. By my reckoning also the apparent ghost that will also in total vote in the election when the tally is done.
At one point of the day the Special Forces Command took control of Nakasero Referal Hospital as it had a technical and importance for the authorities as the Presidential guards needed to secure the premises.
In Gaba a suburb of Kampala the public first waited for hours. This happen:
“In Gaba at St Dennis church a full box was brought with ballot papers already ticked in favor of the incumbent who triggered a riot by locals. Military, Police and black mamba security in tinted cars without number-plate were seen patrolling the place. Voting has ended”. As well as the actions contained this as well: “The voters set fire on all the ballots boxes brought”.
Even early in the day there we’re little or no voting material in vast amounts of polling stations in Wakiso District and Kampala Capital City as the Electoral Commission hadn’t delivered the ballots-papers to the stations. As people came early as the voting starting 07.00 and was to end with the new time 16.00 but with the late arrival nearly at 13.00 or 14.00 even as late as 14.54 that gave the long waiting ques simmering anger at the incompetence or deliberate plunder of time of the people in the area. Even the with the UCC and Telecom bans the Electoral Commission wanted people on Social Media around 14.00 to tell that the Polling stations in the affected areas would be officially open to 19.00 as the people should be able to do their civic duty.
In Kajanisi, Kampala a Police Officer was arrested and taken away as he held over 600 ballots-papers pre-ticket for the NRM and President Museveni. Radio One report that Kajjansi B health center polling station in Kampala closed after 3 boxes with pre-ticked ballots in favor of President Museveni and Peter Sematimba were found in a car. Live Bullets in Namuwongo Taking Place. Police and Military Have Intimidated Voters hence forcing them NOT to cast their votes, remember, voting had just begun late at 2:03pm
As of Makindye:
“9:18PM Voting at 22 polling stations in Makindye affected by late delivery of voting materials postponed till tomorrow: Electoral Commission” (NBS TV, 18.02.2016).
In Fort Portal:
“At public library polling station in south division, Fort Portal, 450 ballot papers were received yet the number of registered voters is 429, an excess of 21 ballots. And yet Nyakagongo parish Headquarters in East division received less ballot papers than the number of registered voters. They received 10 booklets some containing 46 ballots, some 50 and others 49 instead of all containing 50 each booklet. There was a total of 500 ballot papers. They have 471 registered voters. They started voting at 7:15am Report: Scovia Atuhaire & Felix Basiime (Daily Monitor, 18.02.2016).
“Polling agents in Kizungu, Masaka Sports Club have confirmed to Kampala FM that they were not given basins where voters will tick from. This has therefore delayed the voting process since they (agents) too can not afford buying basins” (Kampala FM, 18.02.2016).
More about elections in Masaka:
“Unindentified people have been with fifty Museveni pre-ticked ballot papers at Kaboyo Primary school polling station in Lwengo. The voters who were present at the polling station did not allow police to take the culprits and instead resorted to caining them. They were later on told to go back home and the pre ticked ballots were burnt”.
“Karamojong tribeswoman casts her ballot at a polling station during the presidential elections in Kaabong in Karamoja region”.
“NRM’s Evelyn Anite slips her ballot paper into the ballot box in Koboko Municipality in northern Uganda”.
Early in Apac Town today:
“Voting in Apac town area commenced by 07.10 am. Most polling stations have not had chaos yet, as they voted, Police are all round in Polling stations. Most of the busiest business centers are closed. The number of people in town has also gone down and a few petty businesses are going on” (Rupiny Newspaper, 18.02.2016).
“Last evening, 170 polling officials in River Oli Division in Arua district threatened to boycott work unless Electoral Commission increases their allowances. They include polling assistants and presiding officers. Geoffrey Drani, one of the affected presiding officers, told URN during their recruitment Electoral Commission promised to pay presiding officers Shillings 60,000 and 40,000 for polling assistants. He however, says they were shocked yesterday to receive appointment letters showing that they will receive Shillings 20, 000 each day. According to Drani, as a result, they have declined to sign the appointment letters until Electoral Commission increases the money”.
“No incident has been registered while in Alebtong, Amolatar, Otuke and part of Lira districts by 9:00am the voting have not started despite the fact that many electorate turned up to cast to their votes. “You cast you votes and you come back and continue with your business,” said Betty Akello shorting after voting at VH primary school polling station. Patrick Okello of Omoro Sub County in Alebtong said at Onyeroiye polling station business is going on well and the turned up was overwhelming. “We think the turned up will be 80% because people are voting seriously,” he said” (Rupiny Newspaper, 18.02.2016).
“Elections of the MP kween district have been postponed until further notice reason the symbols for the candidates didn’t match instead vice versa I mean interchanged for FDC was in independent and for independent in that of FDC”.
The Woman Parliamentary MP Vote for Yumbe was cancelled today! (88.7 Arua ONE FM, 18.02.2016).
If you ever thought Kahinda Otafiire would go away silent as the audio-tape of his bribing tactics as he tried to buy the seat from his opponent that beat him in the NRM Primaries during 2015. 2016, has not been his year and continues as he has been jailed today as he has been distributing bribes of UGX 20k to voters in Mitooma (theInsider.ug, 18.02.2016). Doesn’t seem that the UCC bribe act with stopping mobile-money service stopped Otafiire from acting up! (I was not supposed to write that or think that, my bad!).
“The shame of Kiruhura, after yesterday all night harassment, detention and forceful eviction of opposition supporters in Kiruhura. Today what we are witnessing is, because of fear instilled on our supporters by the security and armed militias last night, they have stayed away from the polling stations”.
“Police was forced to fire teargas to disperse hundreds of Apollo Yeri Ofwono’s supporters who had threatened to set a blaze the home of the prime minister of Iteso cultural union Paul Sande Emolot in Tororo municipality. Ofwono’s supporters raided Emolot’s home on suspicion that it was used to bribe residents to vote for the incumbent Member of Parliament Sanjay Tanna” (New Vision, 18.02.2016).
Later in the day Dr. Kizza Besigye arrested:
“Besigye was arrested when he joined his supporters and they stormed a house in Naguru, a Kampala upscale suburb arguing that there is alleged vote rigging taking place”. Kizza Besigye have after the arrest by the Police in Naguru, been taken to Kasangati Police Station. That is currently detained.
“Video footage of an FDC raid on a reported safe house in Naguru being used to allegedly tick ballot papers led by Rtd. Col. Dr. Kizza Besigye in which he was also later arrested for trespassing” (NBS TV Uganda, 18.02.2016).
Shawn Mabiru says this about the detaining of Besigye:
“He was in his home district where he voted when he got information that there was an illegal tally centre manned by the NRM and police” (…)”He walked in and saw them pre-ticking ballot papers. They arrested him and took him to an unknown place”.
In Lira yesterday:
“Lira Magistrate Court today released on Court bail seven people who were arrested over the weekend on allegation of defacing posters belonging to NRM Presidential Candidate Yoweri Museveni. Willy Omodo Omodo the GO Forward Candidate for Oyam North MP, Ibrahim Olong who is contesting for Lira Municipality Mayor and Abura James Walter Youth Councillor for Lira Municipality. Others are Mungu Richard Jakisa the News Editor at Radio North, Otim Innocent , Tile David and Patrick Awongo (Radio Wa 89.8 FM, 17.02.2016).
In Kihihi yesterday:
There was reports that the locals “delivered” and got a 100 Rwandan nationals ferried to vote in the election the 18th had come to Kihihi district to vote for President Museveni. They all stayed in Kihihi Police Station. As they wanted them to ship them home and let Ugandans vote in their election.
In Kayunga County yesterday as the government was kind yesterday:
“Kayunga District distributed more 66 heifers worth 102 million shillings to farmers under the Luwero Rwenzori Development Programme” (17.02.2016); the Government all of sudden share their funds just the day before the election, nothing suspicious about that at all…
The magic is that President Museveni has gotten over 3000 votes while the original papers from the Electoral Commission are saying the total voters are 2098!
Rushere Primary School:
The tally shows another magical result for President Museveni he got 760 votes, Kizza Besigye 2 votes. The magical part is that the School and Polling station has 437 votes!
Fear level at certain places:
As the results are pouring in and the tallies are counted. The Army is deploying heavy forces in Luwero and Nakaseke!
Amama Mbabazi message during the elections today:
“I ask all voters in this election to keep vigilant and report any suspicious incident. I would like to thank the team from Karamoja that is vigilant and have reported the following anomalies. In Abim district, the District Registrar is withdrawing a Presidential booklet (50 ballots) from each polling station and taking to unknown destination claiming that some polling stations were in short supply/under served. We question this logic because it is not only President being voted for today but all Members of Parliament as well. There are 60 polling stations in Abim and this amounts to 3000 votes being taken away. South of Amudat in a place called Karita subcounty, our agents with polling agent letters and supervisors have been chased away by Crime Preventers who are armed. Tell us what is happening at your polling station” (Mbabazi, 18.02.2016).
There will come more in the coming days as the ministers, local council men and all the elections results will come and people will react to the new 10th Parliament and who will become the new president in Uganda, as the results hopefully get rid of President Museveni as his rigging time should be over and let the people’s will shine. Peace.
As President Museveni lost with no swagger in 1980 he later returned twice with armies to become the president in 1986. The 1986 where NRA took the power; that story knows all of Uganda well; what Uganda has forgotten is the tactics and ways of rigging the elections of 1996. Even Dr. Kizza Besigye was ready for somebody else in 1996. That says something as the NRM tactics was using levels of fear and tell the general public: “if you vote for somebody else then the Obote-Dictatorship will return!” There is something wrong with that picture as this should be the ushering of democratic values that was installed and promised in the 10 Point Program from President Museveni. This was also the Election that ushered in the Universal Primary Election (UPE) while has done certain things with educations and spreading schools around the country, after many years to many of them has been neglected and has shown that the promise and reform was easier then actually achieving quality school education under the NRM-Regime.
The democratic values and fair elections were not achieved in 1996. As the countless reforms says. The Western nations and International Organizations accepted the result as a positive move for Uganda, even with the malpractices and also because still at this time the world saw President Museveni as the new breed of leadership. He would go away from all the things he might have built later in his presidential career. 1996 Elections was “No-Party” election with a new Interim Electoral Commission who was far from impartial. Kind of what the Electoral Commission proves without any subtlety in today’s election climate.
Besigye against Museveni candidature in 1996:
“Though Besigye was a National Political Commissar, minister and Museveni confidant, by 1996 – as his 1995 decision, and that of other officers like now Lt. Gen. David Tinyefuza and the late Lt. Col. Serwanga Lwanga to oppose entrenching the Movement’s monopoly of power in the constitution and the near-banning of political parties – the differences were public” (…)”However, it has now emerged that Besigye and other people in the NRM and army in 1996 were opposed to Museveni running as the Movement presidential candidate” (…)”In 1996 Besigye relented at the last minute to go and campaign for Museveni in Rukungiri. He appeared at no more than two rallies, and spoke at one. The very personal and acrimonious face off between the two men last year therefore arose from a feud that had been simmering for about 10 years” (COO, 2002).
How not to vote for Ssemogerere:
“The Constant refrain during Museveni’s 1996 presidential campaign was that a vote for his opponents would cause a return to the past, the former dictator Milton Obote was waiting in Zambia to return to power if Museveni was defeated. One of Museveni’s presidential election poster featured a picture of skulls and bones besides a mass grave in Luwero with the caption: “Don’t forget the past. Over one million Ugandans, our brothers, sisters, family and friends, lost their lives. YOUR VOTE COULD BRING IT BACK”; another campaign advertisement stated bluntly: “A vote for Ssemogerere is a vote for Obote” (Bouckaer, 1999).
How the sentiment was during the campaign:
“Ssemogerere seems to have hugely underestimated the depth of fear and hatred for Obote and his party among the majority of Buganda. Virtually everyone interviewed who had voted for Museveni emphasized that they had voted in part to avoid any chance of a return to the violence and anarchy of the early 1980s. The effect of Ssemogerere alliance with UPC, however, does not seem to have been intimidating. Most people felt shift in sentiment against Ssemogerere in the last two months prior to the election. The Museveni campaign strategy of increasingly emphasizing the UPC and Obote connection towards the end of the campaign period was felt to been effective” (IFES, 1996).
Museveni used the laws to stifle Ssemogerere campaign:
“The Ssemogerere camp tried to set up branches in the country. This ran foul of the law against setting up party structures. The police constantly frustrated this method of trying to reach the voters. There was a simpler and more effective method used by the Museveni camp. It is simply to announce campaign task forces and groups for given locations. While Ssemogerere was attempting to organise by “structure”, Museveni was organising by “process”. The former violated the existing law; the latter did not. The task force approach recognises the criticality of patrons who mediate the delivery of the votes of their peasant flock. In this approach it is not direct contact with voters, which is not feasible in backward areas with all forms of barriers (language), but contact with the patrons who go through lesser nested patrons to reach the final voters. Yoweri Museveni set up a more effective patron–client campaign network than Ssemogerere’s party structure approach” (Kotorobo, 2000).
How it ended:
“Hours after the Interim Electoral Commission (IEC) led by Stephen Akabway had announced provisional results on May 10; the IPFC candidate Ssemogerere dismissed them as false at a press conference at IPFC headquarters in Kabusu, Kampala. Ssemogerere said: “I cannot accept these results as valid”. The New Vision, The Monitor, as well as the Crusader newspapers of the following day, quoted him as having said. “I have been a patient person in public life. I thought this was the best thing for this country. I have spent time with people I don’t agree with for the sake of democracy. I have not known time before or after independence, when people of different political beliefs, religions and nationalities have come together for once. Now all this has been shattered by the stubbornness of [Yoweri Museveni] wanting to cling to power,” he added. During the press conference, Ssemogerere also revealed 54 cases of malpractices recorded by DP across the country. The 64-year-old DP stalwart said rigging of votes included intimidation of voters by the State, use of pre-ticked ballot papers, use of fake voter’s cards and doctored voter registers” (Mugabe, 2016).
Questionable freedom of speech during the 1996 campaign:
“The Government controls one television station and the radio station with the largest audience. There are three local television stations, three local radio stations, and five stations available by satellite. Uncensored Internet access became widely available through three commercial service providers in major cities, although its price was prohibitive for all but the most affluent noninstitutional users. Freedom of speech did not fare well in the context of the transition to constitutional government, including the presidential and parliamentary elections. Guidelines imposed by the Ministry of Internal Affairs prevented members of the former constituent assembly from addressing groups outside their constituencies. Electoral rules prohibited “campaigning” by presidential challengers until the official start of the campaign 39 days before the election. However, in their official capacity, President Museveni and senior members of the Government were free to travel throughout the country for months prior to the election. Rallies in support of all three presidential candidates suffered varying levels of harassment from thugs, in some cases resulting in physical injuries. It appeared, however, that such incidents were particularly directed at President Museveni’s opponents. Yusef Nsubuga Nsambu, a leader of the Conservative party and a supporter of presidential challenger Dr. Paul Ssemogerere, was arrested in May and charged with sedition for his unflattering descriptions of President Museveni. He was released unharmed 2 days later” (U.S. Department of State, 1997).
Celebrating the victory:
“KAMPALA, UGANDA — Thousands of President Yoweri Museveni’s supporters drove through the capital honking car horns and chanting “No change” Saturday to celebrate his first electoral victory” (…)”When Museveni was declared the winner on national radio Saturday, tens of thousands of his supporters poured onto Kampala’s streets, chanting “No change” in the local Luganda language, blasting car horns, and waving branches and flags” (Bashor, 1996).
One reason why he won the 1996 Election:
“Not all NRM successes showed the system’s popularity. The government manipulated small constituencies to gain beholden candidates in many special interest seats created by the 1995 constitution for women, youth, workers, the disabled and the army” (ICG, 2012).
Reports of malfunctions during the 1996 elections:
““The election drew a lower turnout than expected and suffered some logistical problems, but Ugandans generally avoided widely feared violence” (…)“Many of the country’s 8.4 million voters stayed away from the polls, and in many districts, turnout hovered around 50 percent. Logistical problems also hampered voting. At numerous polling stations, Ugandans complained that their names were not on the list of registered voters. “We have waited for hours, and we cannot vote,” said Patrick Nuwgaba, 20, surrounded by about 20 people who said they had been barred from voting. “We have our voter cards, but they say the numbers we have don’t match the numbers they have for us.” Despite those problems, calm prevailed around the country. Election observers reported, however, that in some pro-Museveni districts, especially in western Uganda, Ssemogerere backers had difficulty voting because of hostile crowds” (Buckley, 1996).
Questions about the victory:
”Within 24-hours of voting — and while the ballot papers were still being counted — the Inter Political Forces Cooperation (IPFC) backing the main opposition candidate Ssemogerere, announced that the constitutionally imposed “no-party” elections had been rigged” (…)”We have left it up to individuals to decide whether to stand,” Ssemogerere told IPS. “The electoral process is wrong and its going to be wrong again. If anyone stands they should know it will be with those disadvantages.” (…)”The IPFC’s compromise decision was reminiscent for some people of the 1980 elections in which the UPC are widely believed to have cheated the DP of victory — leaving Ssemogerere open to accusations of legitimising the government when he then took up position as leader of the opposition” (…)”Museveni was backed by, and represented his Movement “no- party” system of government while Ssemogerere was supported by the DP and UPC alliance and represented a return to multi-party politics — a return which would have required a change to the constitution” (Bozello, 1996).
As we see about this Dr. Kizza Besigye and other opposition candidates get the same treatment that Dr. Paul Ssemogerere of Democratic Party in 1996. The vote-rigging, the issues with meeting people, with consulting the party members in the districts, the time for campaigning which apparently happens also before the pre-election period in Uganda in 2015. President Museveni doesn’t only recycle pledges his Police acts similar in 2015 as in 1996. That should be thought of as he talks of that the Movement brings progress. If progress means the same structure that doesn’t offer people freedom or liberty to discuss politics. Then it is NRM for you tomorrow. As the 1996 experience shows; there is a multi-party elections tomorrow, but the signs of 1996 looks strikingly similar, and the Police Force and Governmental institutions is structured to facilitate for the ruling party and funding his campaign while the opposition struggles with unleveled campaigning field that has been all through to the 18th Feburary polls. There is a certainty that Dr. Kizza Besigye has used smarter tactics than Dr. Paul Ssemogerere, but them both has fought the same monster which used the same style of campaigning in 2015-2016 as before the 1996, as he then gave 40 days campaigning as the districts was less, and the same now to the other candidates.
The fear used to intimidate candidates has been used in 2016. As even the security outfits has been deployed and both the army and Special Forces Command; they have been there following opposition and the police has target their trail as the Electoral Commission has given okay to their campaign trail in the start of the campaign in November 2015. This here shows the levels of fear and strong militarized politics that President Museveni feeds on; that has occurred through the whole campaign in the same way it did in 1996. That 2016 and 1996 looks so alike is staggering. The names of the other “actors” are different, but the end-game is the same. Though we hope that the people who are ready for change will see it as the old-man with the hat will do what he can to keep power; even if the people are ready for something else then his empty promises. Peace.
Bashor, Richard – ‘In First Direct Election Since ’62, President Wins Overwhelmingly’ (12.05.1996) – Chicago Tribune.
Bouckaer, Peter – ‘Hostile to Democracy: The Movement System and Political Repression in Uganda’ (August 1999).
Borzello, Anna – ‘UGANDA-POLITICS: ‘Where-To-Now’ Conundrum For Opposition’ (16.05.1996) – Inter Press Service
Buckley, Stephen – ‘INCUMBENT LIKELY WINNER IN UGANDAN PRESIDENTIAL VOTE’ (11.05.1996) – Washington Post
Katorobo, James – ‘The Uganda Presidential and Parliamentary Elections 1996’ (2000)
Mugabe, Faustin – ‘How free and fair was the Uganda 1996 election after 10 years of rule by the political party of the National Resistance Movement?’ (30.01.2016).
International Crisis Group (ICG) – ‘UGANDA: NO RESOLUTION TO GROWING TENSIONS’ (05.04.2012).
International Foundation for Election Systems (IFES) – ‘Uganda: Long Term Observation of 1996 Presidential and Legislative Election (May-July 1996).
Onyango-Obbo, Charles (COO) – ‘Besigye Opposed Museveni’s Bid in 1996, And Set Off Movt Demons’ (15.12.2002) – Daily Monitor
U.S. Department of State – ‘Uganda Country Report on Human Rights Practices for 1996’ Released by the Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, (January 30, 1997).
The National Resistance Movement Bus Company Limited started its operation on the Presidential Nominations Rally on the 3rd November 2015. The buses was used from the districts and picking up ‘Crime Preventers’ to the Campaign venue. As the successful launch was not without defects as the Company stranded the people in Kampala instead of ferrying them home.
The NRM Bus Company has verified the actual value of their “car-park” as they have 168 buses. Which is being used to serve the company and make sure they deliver people to the campaign venues; the people themselves don’t want to show up without being payed and getting a free ride there. The people who usually doesn’t attend the rallies as the villages and small towns to get to the main venues to see Bebe Cool, Jose Chameleone and the Executive Director of the NRM Bus Company Honorable Yoweri K. Museveni. The one man who has used some of his funds to start the company!
In the November 2015 alone the Bus Company used UGX 140m on the expenses on the company side (Alliance for Campaign, 2015).
Operational Launch of the Company:
On the initial launch of the company for the nomination rally the Company used the NRM Secretariat UGX 45m to have enough funds to get people from Lyantonde and Mubende to Kololo Independence Grounds on the 3rd November 2015. From the Area the Company had promised to send 15 buses, but only 9 showed up; so the Company did not deliver that day to expectation in the area. Buses from Kololo were also using the service of the Company from Kabale to the campaign venue.
To the Luweero rallies the Buses was pre-occupied to get the people from the villages to the venues on the 9th November 2015. They ferried Crime Preventers that was stranded after the Kololo break-down to the rallies in Luweero.
On the 25th November the rally in Kotido town, where people from the villages had been ferried to; but the Company had also engagements in other parts to secure attendance for the party that owns the Company, though the delivery was sub-par in Kotido as the people we’re stranded as the Company was not prepared to facilitate people home on that occasion.
The Operation on 12th December the Company had a successful business as they used 30 buses from Mbale to Bududa. The ones that took the opportunity that day in Mbale got UGX 5k and free yellow t-shirt.
The Company suffered a big set-back in Mbale at 12th December as the truck-drivers was not fairly compensated or the former pledges of the NRM Company was not being kept. Even when a Government Official in the Region District Commander (RDC) was going to negotiate with the Company men, they still refused.
On the 18th December the Company had a sufficient delivery as the Campaign in Tororo was filled to the brim with no locals and that people from all corners was payed to attend the rallies that day. The people came the day before and Company surely did get people to the event on the 19th of December.
On the 4th January in Kabale towards the main rally at the Kabale Stadium, from all around the villages in the district buses was travelling and giving money to attend the campaign rally. The amount of cost for this rally was expected to cost the company UGX 500m.
They had operations at the 6th January in 2016 to get people from Ntungamo to Rukungiri to make sure that the people arrived safely to the Rukungiri campaign venue. The worst part of the delivery was the village people who had joined and taken part of the services on the 6th January in Kihihi, was stranded at the Kihihi Police Station; so the Bus Company did not live up to expectations.
On the 10th January in Isingiro the Crime Preventers was the one who was attending the Campaing Rally, while the locals walked home, successful in the way the Company got Crime Preventers to the venue, but the locals did not use the service.
In January they had a central in Mbarara while making sure the affiliations and hired extended companies like 11th January the Global Buses to ship people to the Campaign venues. As the 13th January hired another buses to make sure they got people from the districts around the area to get people to Bushenyi.
On the 2nd February the Company fixed trucks and buses to get people to the Sembabule rally of the owning party, but did not facilitate to get people home, as they we’re stranded, the Company was off to other engagements and rallies; was also not ordered to get people back home after the rally.
On the 4th February the Company used it resources and got people as far as Kalangala to be a part of the rally at Masaka. They used rented and owned trucks from the long distance areas to make the full with people.
On the 8th February to be able to have enough people for the rallies that day, the Bus Company had operations in the Busoga Region, giving T-Shirts and UGX 20k and the ride to the campaign venues of the day. As the locals that day would not attend on the rallies there.
On the 10th of February the Company had troubles with the arrangement and buses where in the shop so the service delivery was substandard and therefore the amount of people at rallies in Entebbe as the mechanical problems destroyed the result of the company that day.
On the 11th February the Company had hired Global to be successful again getting people from Mbarara to Kampala to attend the venue graced by the company.
Today (12.02.2016) in Kampala the NRM Bus Company have been busy with offering ferrying services from Central Parts of city to Kawempe main rally, as the operations drops UGX 5k as the Bus Service was in operations in Kampala.
Basic Part of the Operation of the NRM Bus Company Limited:
As we see the operations since the beginning has not been perfect, but that is to blame for the mobilisers who has not address the central organizations as Mike Ssebalu as the NRM Campaign Task Manger or Gen. Tukumunde “the money man” who hasn’t fixed the money from the owning party. As the NRM Bus Company is not yet a fully functional enterprise or limited company as it will be after the 19th February. Then the NRM Bus Company Limited will both dissolve and sell the buses, so they can be customized for those who want the buses that have tested the worst roads of the country while driving from village to village. Our main spokesman in Ofwono Opondo who will delegate the issues that you have through the Uganda Media Centre, while Jim Muhwezi and his men in the Ministry of Information and National Guidance, as they take the questions you may have on the NRM.ug as that is in their working title. So the Press if they have issues should either address Hon. Opondo or Hon. Muhwezi. The Executive will just address the bus-matter if the participation is fully in his hand and not set standards by anybody else. If you have issues with procurement or allocations as the party sometimes as owner delivers the payments slow, be assured the Dr. Ruhakana Ruganda will come with the necessary facilitation to make sure the venue and people have the money that they deserve for being a part of the Bus Company, A customer and also a citizen at the same time. Peace.
Alliance for Campaign – ‘MONITORING CAMPAIGN EXPENSES DURING THE PRE-ELECTION PERIOD’ – PROGRESS REPORT NOVEMBER – DECEMBER 2015