Opinion: Nangalama forgets the grim reaper

There are one of those days, when you let your anger strike you too hard and you write something in an infuriating state. Where you mind boggles the facts and deeper understanding of the things. What the Ugandan blogger based in Canada did was very easy microwaving the message without considering the implications of it. Like, the Opposition should react, instead she said it shouldn’t campaign or shouldn’t even try create change. If she got her will, the demolition of opposition would be fixed. Mzee, Bosco or Mr. Sunday would be very happy, because people listened to Nangalama. They put down their swords and became silent like graves. 

Here is an out-take from Red Pepper, which has resurfaced on social media:

Ugandans should be demanding from their opposition leaders why their kids are being killed. Opposition leaders should not be taking the killings as political capital. They should suspend all their rallies, consultations and kwekalakasa to demand justice for the dead and imprisoned. You surely do not think we have opposition in Uganda. Here is the BIG News, there is no opposition in Uganda” (Martha Leah Nangalama – ‘People Power Movement Should Not Use Death for Cheap Political Capital’ 29.02.2020).

All of this happens because People Power Movement (PPM) are seeing their activists killed and associates being murdered. She is initially stating that Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine is wrong and doing it badly.

As she started her piece like this: “Bobi Wine should sack his media team and hire a professional.  Capitalizing on the death of two young people is not my cup of tea. Those two kids are in the same age group as my kids so I fly to Toronto, Canada to capitalize on deaths!! With a poster like this. Who is gonna raise their kids? The opposition needs to learn from Gen. Mugisha Muntu” (Martha Leah Nangalama – ‘People Power Movement Should Not Use Death for Cheap Political Capital’ 29.02.2020).

It is like this have never been done before, all political movements has had their martyrs, especially the ones who fought against a junta or a miltiary dictatorship. Because, the junta will use their force, because they have no other methods of control of dissidents. That is why the opposition is so split and attacked by the authorities. All means are used against them, even killing by trying to stop the opposition from gathering or even assemble in public. This is something Nangalama knows, but doesn’t care to dig into. Maybe, that isn’t important to her?

She just want friend sheep like Mugisha Muntu, whose loved by the NRM and whose so pragmatic, that he cannot even pass a street without asking authorization by the local RDC. That is how it seems. This from the lady from ‘Peril of Africa’, the lady who always goes hard. However, here she went a bit left. Especially, if she yearns for change or more of the same?

It is like she wrote in rage, I understand and we both agree. That no one should die because of politics. Each life taken is one to much. However, the brutal reality is that the army, all security agencies and so-on use all means to shut-down the opposition. They know everything, because the opposition needs to notify and spell out their activity to the authorities. Therefore, they got no way to hide or escape the armed forces, either if they like it or not.

In that reality. She wants a compromised leader, a leader who doesn’t dare the authorities nor the structure itself. A man whose not honest in his approach to his start-up party Alliance of National Transformation (ANT). She accepts this, because, she wants that easy-picking approach. Not even use the ills against you. However, Muntu like anyone else uses burials and funerals as rally grounds for political messages, but that is cool right?

I understand her frustration, as the dead is named and put on like martyrs. No one wants to have that. No movement wants that, but when your fighting the powers to be with all their forces. They use all means to stay in power. They are not redeeming or a forgiving organization. No, they come with bullets, tear-gas and prison. This she knows, but wants them to silent and not speak up about it.

Only lay-down and die. Not speak out, not address it or continue. She wants suspensions and not civil disobedience. If you think that works, then you will give life to the Movement for a few more decades and a Muhoozi Presidency when Yoweri “calls it a day”. Because, why fight them or undress them at all?

When you want men like Muntu? Why even use time to blog or speak of the ills of society? Only when it doesn’t cost? Should the opposition suspend it all and really die? In your eyes, they are dead anyway?

I am sure Kizza Besigye and POA will disagree with that. The same will Bobi Wine, who you disagree with. There are opposition, but nearly impossible to do party work or assemble. If they do so, there is costs, there is pain and suffering. Unless, people stand up against that. The cycle of violence, arrests and misuse of power will continue. However, the stance in her piece. Isn’t creating anything positive. It is neither showing any will of stopping of it, but instead giving ways to the authorities who is sanctions this actions towards the youths who dies for their political affiliation.

Even if I believe it comes from a true place, that Nangalama means well. It doesn’t serve anyone. Except for the ANT and Muntu. Who easily speaks with everyone, but is of no concern to the State House. That is why his out there. However, the ones who is a of a concern and who creates fire is dismissed and said to lay their tools down.

How will that generate change? It will not, especially, if the ones whose new and who has the youth behind them. Suddenly, supposed to suspend their actions and be silent. Not even try to be relevant. That is reality of what she wrote. Because, of the deaths and the usage in public. The PPM and Bobi Wine should lay their tools down and not do anything.

With that sort of thinking, Bobi Wine is never winning. It is just the matter of which ways he looses. He looses if he acts and looses if he stands down. He cannot even participate without someone saying his actions are wrong.

Wonder if Nangalama thought of that? I didn’t think so. Peace.

Mwenda’s recent Illusions of the ‘FDC versus NRM’ doesn’t make sense!

There are certain members of the media atmosphere, that is so deluded and so paid-off by the National Resistance Movement, that their vision is blurred. If someone would believe that this fellow was drinking or even lack of memory, than people would have believed that, since his reasoning is so far fetched and forged together. So, that the elitism and the favorable view is so in the open. That no matter what the Opposition would do. It would be wrong, anyone standing in the way of the NRM. They are vicious people and vindictive to be supporting the cause of toppling the dictatorship. However, that is the vision of Andrew Mwenda, the Independent Magazine owner and writer. The man whose lost his way, today. I will take extract of his two recent rants on the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC). I just have to scrutinize them, as they deserve.

First on disintegration of the FDC:

Besigye himself did not start out as a radical extremist. However he adopted this position in order to keep the loyalty of his base. These radical extremists believe in a politics of blackmail, insults, lies and intimidation to get their way. They represent a worse alternative to President Yoweri Museveni’s politics of corruption and patronage. For all his faults, Museveni represents a more enlightened politics than Besigye and his extremists. He is to some degree liberal democratic – to a good extent – he has some tolerance of and respect for free speech and other liberal democratic values. But the radical extremists are fascists” (Mwenda, 2018).

This little extract shows how narrow-minded Mwenda has become, if that is in his own high esteem or his lack of vision. That he has to figure out a way to narrowly escape the perjury of his own mind. What we can see, is that no matter what Museveni does, it will be better than Besigye. Even if Museveni has all powers and made a crappy patronage system, that will be better than the FDC and Besigye ever will be. Even if no one has ever tried or succeeded in doing so. Therefore, just by this mere impasse, his reasoning are falling flat.

Secondly, how can liberal democratic values turn into fascists? Where in his right mind does this work out? It is just like reading political voodoo again. The mismatch of political in a petri-dish and use of tools to create an imaginary Nessie in the midst of Lake Albert. Because that is what Mwenda here does. If your members and supporters of Besigye, your fascists, by his reckoning, which is in itself a disgrace. As the Besigye supporters aren’t violent brown-shirt or ethnic cleansing individuals, even the P10 in diaspora isn’t supporting an armed struggle against the Museveni. So where in the mind of Mwenda makes these ideas. He surely need therapy or more schooling, because this doesn’t make sense.

FDC’s radical extremism:

Here has been the tragedy of the struggle for democracy in Africa. Claims by any group opposed to a dictatorial government to be fighting for democracy are taken on face value. Its internal operations and the behaviour of its leaders and members are rarely questioned. And in many cases these groups have captured power and produced governments that are worse than those they overthrew. The lesson for Uganda is simple but fundamental: denouncing Museveni’s dictatorial tendencies is not enough to make a political movement liberal-democratic. Its modus operandi is more critical. FDC is the best positioned party to capture power from NRM. The radical extremists are its strongest faction in FDC. Hence a capture of power by FDC would be a victory for radical extremism and a danger to democracy in Uganda. Whatever the democratic deficits manifest inside NRM, Museveni individually and his party and government generally are fairly tolerant and liberal-minded. I built my career as a journalist exposing the rot in his government alongside its dictatorial tendencies. Yet throughout this period I frequently visited Museveni at State House and we argued over our differences. He would come to my radio show. He would telephone me to express disagreement over opinions or facts I had written. The same applies to NRM and UPDF leaders. They were regular guests on my radio show and my major sources of information” (Mwenda, 2018).

It is weird again that someone would be danger to democracy, while the other one are keeping a narrow hold of power in the State House. That is why someone whose been into power for 32 years are no problem for democracy, but the ones in opposition will cause havoc. That even without proof of it. This is just peddling lies and deception. That Mwenda says NRM are liberal and tolerant minded, why does everyone has to follow the guidance of Museveni and the ones who doesn’t get demoted.

If the NRM was so liberal and tolerant minded, why the NRM rebels get demoted? Why did the leadership throw out Mbabazi, Bukenya and others because of their ambitions? Mwenda, why doesn’t you mention that? While the FDC has had three Party Presidents by now since its inception since 2005, while the NRM since 1986 has had one in command from the State House. There has been lack of control from others.

So, therefore it is special, that ones ordering the army and police to be able to control power, have trouble with supporters of the opposition. This is just weird, that the NRM are okay with its mistakes, but the FDC will become fascists and extremists, but the armed military government of NRM are fine and dandy. If you don’t see flaws in that reasoning, than your right and Mwenda is off the chains.

We can clearly see the brilliant mind or the wacked head of Mwenda. His own head must be a battlefield, as the lack of reasoning and mental breakdown of the defense of Museveni is in the open. It is just like accepting the dictator and making the opposition criminal hoodlums. Not complaining about the ones ordering the killing, but saying the ones reporting the killings as the ill of society. That is what Mwenda is doing these days.

If you know, you know. Peace.

Reference:

Andrew M. Mwenda – ‘The likely defeat of FDC’s radical extremism’ (13.08.2018)

Andrew M. Mwenda – ‘The disintegration of FDC’ (11.08.2018)

Uganda Police Force: Clarification on allegations made by Bweranaho Charles against the Flying Squad (09.05.2018)

Yumbe Riot: Conflicting reports, but seemingly authorities created the havoc and it got public reactions!

What can we can conclude is that the Police Force in Yumbe District has arrested about 60 people and two individuals seriously injured (some reports dead) after bullets hit the scene. The Police Force statements and the Uganda Revenue Authority statements doesn’t add-up. While the Police are saying the URA had an enforcement operation there, the URA counter-claim it and says there was none.

However, there has imports of illegal rice in this case, that created the havoc seen today in Yumbe, as both statements refers to it. The URA legal team, who encountered the boda-bodas with it, who was stoned for interfering with it. While the Police Force are not addressing directly the illegal rice, but that URA was looking at the number plates and lack of tax on the motorcycles.

Before the crowd and masses of people rioted, burning both motorcycles and a car belonging to the Danish Aid in the town. The end of the statement clarifies that the URA was there to collect taxes on the imported rice, and that the motorcycle drivers has to pay the state. Also that URA will continue this operations in the West Nile region.

The Police has said they will engage with the Boda Boda Industry and community, as of this incident. What is special, is one saying it was not paid for the motorcycle, the URA saying it was because of the lack of taxes on imports on the motorcycle. It is a small difference, but still one. We can wonder what was the truth.

What we do know, is that the Police has arrested a dozen of people and two killed, some say they were just hurt. Hard to know what is the fact. 103.2 Open Gate FM reported this earlier in the day: “Two people are reported dead in Yumbe District following a protest by youth in the area against operations of the Uganda Revenue Authority-URA. The protests were sparked by a URA operation against unregistered bodas bodas, in the event apprehending residents in the business. The operation became sour when the URA vehicle knocked down a bodaboda cyclist, making bodabodas to become rowdy by burning several vehicles prompting police to fire bullets. URA Manager Public and Corporate Affairs, Ian Rumanyika said the Authority was cracking down on unregistered boa bodas as well as those smuggles from South Sudan without reverting tax” (103.2 Open Gate FM, 28.03.2018).

So it wasn’t a peaceful initiating, as the URA Management followed and tracked the Boda Boda down. Knocked it and the Police intervened in the operation. The report of Open Gate, also say the URA was doing both, not just stopping the smuggling from South Sudan, but also look into the tags, which hadn’t paid tax. Secondly, they are saying that the URA team drove after the Boda Boda and actually knocked one down. That isn’t just fining and taking the tags, not only checking the products or rice, but actually nearly impounding it. This has been done without forewarning or local knowledge. If not this wouldn’t have happen.

So the URA are now combating illegal imports and also unregistered boda boda’s. Clearly, there have to be better methods, since this became violent, and the following after and knocking down. Was a final spark, since the URA Management created havoc on the way and than the Police intervened with guns, as the youth was throwing stones. When the violent activity transpired they addressed it with throwing stones and also burning cars.

Whatever it was, it shows the lack of oversight and the lack of basic understanding. It is natural for a state to tax imports, also serve taxes on plates, yearly pay for being able to drive on the roads. Both actions are normal, but if the URA Management did the right thing, if the Police Force did the same. Can be questioned and should be.

What should also be asked, would there be a better way to collect the missed tax and also secure the porous border points, so the Boda Boda can pay the levies when entering into Uganda again. Secondly, the URA should be able to notify the drivers of their missing payments and not knock them down for doing so.

We will see with time, if the stories are changing or if they will stay the same. However, this is worrying sight of the state of affairs. When collecting taxes becomes a stand-off, you know something is wrong. Peace.

URA: Clarification on Riot in Yumbe (28.03.2018)

Opinion: Today Mzee said he will have the Crime Preventers as a reserve army, what will he use it for?

October 26, 2015 – Crime Preventers

Democracy is not simply a license to indulge individual whims and proclivities. It is also holding oneself accountable to some reasonable degree for the conditions of peace and chaos that impact the lives of those who inhabit one’s beloved extended community.”Aberjhani, (Splendid Literarium: A Treasury of Stories, Aphorisms, Poems, and Essays).

After the hectic usage of the Crime Preventers in the run-up for the General Election in 2016, they are suddenly relevant again. Even after the state are failing with funds and such. The National Resistance Movement, still seems to need several more guns and soldiers out there walking in the streets of Uganda. That is how it seems, but however now it has changed from being part of the Uganda Police Force, into a brigade from the Uganda People’s Defence Force (UPDF). That means the Generals will control it and order it, not the Police. That is very different animal if this happens.

Reported by 411UG today: ““I now regard you as a reserve army for UPDF. My idea is to have a small army which is equipped but with a big reserve”, Museveni stated in his address at Lugogo Arena. However, before saying so, President Museveni refuted rumours surrounding ‘who owns them’ he said; “Anybody who had an idea that this was a Kayihura project, please, get it out of your head. But Kayihura was an active cadre who executed that aspect and I congratulate him.” (411UG – ‘I now regard you as a reserve army for UPDF — Museveni tells crime preventers’ 28.03.2018).

What President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, is distancing himself from the statements the Uganda Police Force did during campaigns of 2015, when the UPF stated this: “Uganda Police Force has learnt with profound disappointment that a Facebook group called Team JPAM 2016 has referred to ‘Crime Preventers’ as a militia force, as if that was not enough, they have also drawn comparisons of it with the infamous Rwandan genocidaire group called The Interahamwe who were responsible for some of the most heinous crimes against humanity in the history of mankind. Amid this outrageous ill-motivated accusations, we thought it was important that Ugandans understand that the concept of community policing has always been there and contemplated for implementation, as way back as 1990. It is a metamorphose of the ‘Nyumba Kumi’. Those who are old enough will remember that Nyumba Kumi works on the premise that each community must be able to be self-reliant on security matters. In fact though Nyumba Kumi means ‘ten houses’ in Swahili, the concept is not rigid in its implementation. Again those of pertinent age will remember that visitors and or any new person in a given community was required to register and deposit their IDs with the chairman or the police” (Uganda Police Force – ‘CRIME PREVENTERS ARE NOT A MILITIA FORCE’ 22.03.2018).

So if they are reserves to the UPDF, that means Amama Mbabazi was actual going forward, because the accusation is now true. That means the Crime Preventers will become a brigade, another force under the UPDF. They are militia under the army, they are secondary army and brigades when in need. That means they shouldn’t be involved in policing, but national security. That is if the difference between the police and army is respected. This also means, that the Police Force getting less extra officers, since the changes of program should come swiftly, also the change in mandate of the Crime Preventers.

This is also not in line what he himself said in 2016: ““In all modern countries, there is an Army and Police Reserve. Crime Preventers are a Police Reserve. They do not have any political affiliation. Anyone who wants to become a Crime Preventer should join,” he said. Mr. Museveni reassured the country that there will be no violence during elections. “The law guarantees a peaceful election. It says what is wrong and should not be done during elections. If you do what should not be done, we will arrest you. Soldiers are not yet deployed but they will soon be,” he said” (PPU – ‘ President Museveni: Crime preventers are a Police Reserve Force’ 14.02.2016).

So two years ago, they we’re a Police Reserve, now it has changed, the army needs reserves, the army needs to be bolstered for apparent reasons unknown to mankind. The UPDF needs the extra personnel, that the UPF cannot pay for, the UPDF has budgets for extended personnel and firepower. Certainly, there is something underlining the will of the President. That he is willingly using the Crime Preventers as military reserves. That means, they will follow orders from the military and not from the new leadership of UPF. Meaning they are going from one security organization into another, where the mandate and meaning is different.

This means the Police are now having less people associated with it, this is winging the organization and establishing another norm. We can wonder if the brigade and that the National Crime Preventers Forum (NCPF), that was established in 2013, meaning that the mandate and will of this organization too, needs to change if it supposed to make sense. The Community Policing will not make sense, if they are a military brigade, unless he want to show military force and spread fear. That tehe soldiers will be with guns and ammunition in the streets, to show that the NRM has big enough force to continue their rule, therefore, you never know when you meet a UPDF Crime Preventer. The former Community Policing officer who coordinating directly with the Police. Should now be in direct line with the military. That is because their mission changed.

We can wonder what the need for a military reserve, how come? Is there a war brewing the world doesn’t know about? Does Museveni plans to invade the Democratic Republic of Congo, again? Does Museveni plan to intervene with soldiers in South Sudan, again? What is the use of extra and more soldiers in reserve, that was previous community police officers through the Crime Preventers Program.

Because, it doesn’t make sense to conduct fighting internal policing and being military at the same time. They are two vast different approach to both organizations within the community, the army to secure the borders and people from outsider invading, also being a securing element. That stops the neighbors from wanting to cross the borders. While the police who has the allowed space of investigating and combating crime within the territory, they are also securing the safety directly in the territory. Therefore, seeing the Crime Preventers becoming part of the army, means that the mandate change.

This means that Museveni is up to something. I don’t know what, but it smells fishy. I just don’t know what. Peace.

Uganda Police Force Press Release: Riots in Yumbe District (28.03.2018)

UPF want clarify about the closure of Nalufenya (23.03.2018)

Minister Jeje Odongo’s MPS on the NCIC is revealing!

Minister of Interior Jeje Odongo own Ministerial Policy Statement of 15th March 2018 are very standard sort of document, but certain statements from there is telling. Especially on the Vote 120 on National Citizenship and Immigration Control, what it is, is apparently, reasons for why it need to be addressed, because it is a real lack transparency and not taking care of the Republic.

The NCIC is compromised of: “Deployed 300 Immigration Officers and Immigration Assistants at the borders and regional offices. This recruitment and deployment has improved border control and post entry management of aliens. This has improved representation of the ethnic groups of Ugandan and staff gender ratios” (…) “Insufficient funds to undertake constructions: Immigration offices are in very small single room measuring less than 8ftX8ft which accommodates more than 5 immigration staff. Furthermore, the Headquarters is housed in what was formerly a warehouse with some services provided under tents. Limited Staff accommodation. Some borders operate in wee hours which necessitates presence of accommodation for staff. This limits space for offices, e-services and board meetings. The Directorate requires UGX25.8bn for constructions. Porous Borders: Uganda has 52 gazetted border points along 2729 km borderline operationalized through the cluster approach. This leaves part of the borderline unmanned which compromise security and revenue generation. The Directorate requires extra UGX1.9bn for border operations” (MINISTRY OF INTERNAL AFFAIRS – MINISTERIAL POLICY STATEMENT FOR THE FINANCIAL YEAR 2017/2018, P: 62, 71, 2018).

It really is showing that something is lacking when you have 52 borders and staffed three hundred officers. That means that each border post would have about average 5 officers. Just think about that, when the border needs to be open 24/7 and there would be more on certain border-posts, also at Entebbe Airport as well. Since lots of the ones entering Uganda come by planes, not only by foot. Therefore, the NCIC is underfunded, but also understaffed.

The 300 officers are not only keeping track of the foreign workers, visitors of the Republic, but also issuing passports. Therefore, the NCIC is even more important to be staffed, because of the need of control of the borders. The republic cannot have open borders and have control of the revenue and neither also population control. It is seemingly bad planning and at random. But the porous borders and the gazetted borders should have officers. Since they are issuing in the last year over 65,000 passports last year. The Officers are really busy doing and not only looking into the ones moving across the borders.

If this body is supposed to control the migration, register and secure that no-one overstays their welcome. They need bigger funding, more officers and more training. Since that must be lacking, when the borders are seen as porous. Peace.

Uganda Police Force: Police Message – “Ref: HRM/141/225/01(.) Force Re-Organization Order” (18.03.2018)