“Our position, however, has always been clear. If you play tricks with us, we shall play tricks with you; if you are honest with us, we shall be honest with you; If your violent against us, we shall be violent against you” – Yoweri Kaguta Museveni excerpt from inauguration speech from the 29th January 1986
We are all seeing the gleeful celebration. The smugness of the National Resistance Movement (NRM). The Party that took over the Republic 34 years ago on the 26th January 1986. The history has been written about this and the last victor writes it the way they like. While were never getting the answers for all the skulls of the Luweero Triangle. Clearly, there are some murky past of the bush-war, that hasn’t been released.
Still the NRM wants this day to bashed in glory. While I have found some pieces of articles from the same year. That shows how they did it. Even if the all the promises, the pledges and the supposed liberation haven’t been followed. Unless, internal peace is the only real thing to celebrate after 34 years. Because, the 10 Point Programme haven’t been ushered in.
Because, Museveni promised a mere change of guards. But he just became another tyrant, than the ones in the past. He might want to think well of himself. However, the next history writer will see the blood, the pain and suffering he has caused. The cronyism and the grand corruption, the systematic “high above” order. Where people are directed to the President and State House before things are happening locally. That is the Republic after 30 years under his reign. The promise and hope has been distorted, one day at the time and in 2020 there is no return.
Here’s a few out-takes from some articles:
“KAMPALA, Uganda — Rebel forces seized control of parts of the capital Friday in fierce house-to-house fighting with government troops, and Western diplomats said Kampala is on the brink of falling to the insurgents. “I think we will have a change in government soon,” one diplomat said. By nightfall, the National Resistance Army guerrillas had managed to silence the transmitters of Radio Uganda–the East African country’s national radio–but failed to dislodge all government units in the downtown area after a full day of fighting” Los Angles Times – ‘Fall of Kampala Reported Near as Troops Fight House to House ‘ 25.01.1986).
“Uganda’s rebel commander, Mr Yoweri Museveni, ‘whose five-year bush war culminated with the capture of Kampala last weekend, was sworn in as Uganda’s President. A s Mr Museveni finished the oath of office from Uganda’s British-born Chief Justice, Mr Peter Allen, thousands of onlookers cheered loudly. Life is returning to normal in the Ugandan capital following the overthrow of General Tito Okello’s military government by well-disciplined guerrillas. Kampala residents rejoiced at the takeover, which took place just six months after the last coup, and they appeared generally, confident the New National Resistance Army rulers offered real hope of ending the turmoil that has wracked Uganda for the post 20 years. NRA guerrillas captured Kampala on Sunday and western diplomats said they had also taken the country’s second largest town, Jinja, after a fierce lunchtime battle” (The Nambian, 31.01.1986).
“Museveni asserted would represent far more than “a mere change of the guard.” The absence of looting on the streets of Kampala after the takeover— in marked contrast to the aftermath of earlier coups— provided striking evidence in his favor. Young NRA soldiers guarded buildings and provided civilians with assistance. Intensive training while in the bush instilled in them The belief that they are to be “servants of the people.”rather than tyrants” (Africa Report – Volume 31, Number 2 P: 37, March-April 1986).
We can see, that people had a hope in 1986. We cannot take away from that. They had hope in Museveni and his cause. They had hope his rebels and their discipline would make a difference. However, that has been squandered.
The NRM didn’t become the servants of the people, they became the new tyranny. The ones whose rigging like the ones they overthrew. They are using “safe-houses” like the predecessor. The NRM are using arbitrary arrests, colonial laws and methods of past regimes to hold an iron grip on the opposition.
The NRM haven’t gotten rid of poverty, neither have they developed the nation in a fashion, which they have promised over the years. They should be sky-rockets to Mars by now, by all the pledges and promises. The state haven’t delivered the hope of 1986. Instead it has betrayed it and betrayed the ones dying for that cause.
That’s the worst thing. The ones who fought on the sideline of Museveni. The ones risking it all in the bush-war. Would be horrified by what has done. The other NRA historicals, and cronies now. Are acting as they are above the law and entitled to riches. Even, if they are supposed to serve. Instead, they turned the same tyrants they were supposed to get rid off.
That’s why the bashing in glory today is distasteful and disgraceful. The Republic deserves better. This was a false liberation. One man got liberated, his cronies got liberated, but the ones daring to play tricks on him, they will play tricks you too. Peace.