“Don’t matter who did what to who at this point. Fact is, we went to war, and now there ain’t no going back. I mean, shit, it’s what war is, you know? Once you in it, you in it. If it’s a lie, then we fight on that lie. But we gotta fight” – Slim Charles (The Wire, S3E12, 2004).
The Head of Uganda Media Centre and Government Spokesperson Ofwono Opondo has caused lots of stir recently with his man-handling and violent behaviour that turned into an altercation on the set of NBS TV own ‘Frontline’ show on Thursday this week. That was deliberate actions after the spokesperson got heated and retaliated with force, instead of words, which would be more fitting to the surroundings. However, this case is pending and Lord Mayor Kampala, Erias Lukwago has petitioned a case against him for it.
This here shouldn’t shock anyone that this could happen. That a Minister Chris Baryomunsi just looking at it while OO calls for “reinforcements”. If that isn’t compelling. It just speaking high volume of the tribe in power and how they are entitled to their behaviour. However, for OO his gotten away with violence and theft in the past. So, if he gets away with this. It’s nothing new.
We are talking back in the day and when he had other titles like the Director of Information at the Movement Secretariat. Those days he was suspected to have shot and killed “thug” at the Kampala Parents School in September of 2004. While in April 2005 he was caught thieving underwear and a pen from Uchumi Supermarket.
There is even unverified incidents that people have been detained and locked in the dark offices of Uganda Media Centre after the high ranking officials has been provoked or questioned on the premises. That has been reported in the media too. So, his used to using force and getting away with it.
When you know all this and how his been part of the Movement all his career. OO is one of the untouchables. His been selected the President and carries his weight in the media. The organization his running is to make the President look good and dignify whatever that is going on. That’s his business and routine mission in life. Because, he does that.. the state forgives him for whatever transgression he may have.
That’s why his arrogant and entitled. He feels he has earned this stature and everyone should respect him as an elderly statesman now. Even though his far from it and haven’t build anything substantial. His the gutter press that he calls others from time to time. His making bold claims and achievements to make it seem grand.
However, when everything you have made is based on a lie and built around that lie. You will do whatever to defend it. OO will stand on the barricades and dance to the glory of that lie. Even if it never becomes true. Because, that’s all OO has and needs. He cannot live without the lie and prosper is impossible without it. OO needs and thrives with the lies and deception. That is his craft and that’s why the state adores him. This is why they keep him around and allow his actions.
OO is fighting for the lie and going to war for it. Just like his Master who still wears army fatigue at any given moment. That is what he does and how he operates. OO wants to remain loyal and be in the good graces. So, he does what he does. He fights on the lie and blatantly proud of the fact.
That’s why he lost it and became violent. He cannot accept that the lie is undressed and that his words is vanishing into thin air. OO just needs space and ability to peddle lies. That’s all he does and that’s his life purpose. Peace.
The government spokesperson and forever lingering subject of the Republic, Ofwono Opondo dropped a piece recently on Uganda Media Centre called: “MUHOOZI KAINERUGABA AND THE TINGLING POLITICAL FLAMES”. This piece is written like it’s still up in the air and in the open what the plan is. Like there haven’t been a “Project Muhoozi” and the machinery is behind his candidacy, even before he get dusted or even tested. That is evident, as his one of the owners and part of the inner-circle by definition of birth, rank and title at this very moment.
Lt. Gen. Muhoozi Kainerugaba is on the rise and is most definitely aiming for his fathers throne. As he speaks of winning the hearts, minds and all of the Republic. His brash and arrogant stances in combination with promises of a political program. Just shows how he intends to stand and be next in line. That’s National Resistance Movement (NRM) MPs have talked of a rebrand of the party to National Progressive Movement (NPM) and the NRM Youth League has already endorsed him. So, everything is on the table and it up in the open.
That’s why it’s striking that OO writes this: “Muhoozi’s admirers, who seem spread countrywide, and calculating possible windfalls, argue that the ‘MK movement’ is spontaneous although many people disagree and insist it’s well-calculated to give it a veneer of legitimacy so as to shield him from accusations of disregarding the constitutional provision which bars serving UPDF soldiers from involvement in open politics” (OO, 08.05.2022).
OO is writing like they are building up a momentum of sorts. That there is sort of organic traction to Muhoozi, which there is not. It is all artificial and OO knows that. It is within reason to be suspicious and question the legitimacy. When one man has held office since 1986 and suddenly in 2022 his son is aspiring to takeover. That is not organic or by the popularity of public opinion. This is another hostile takeover and not a peaceful transition. It is just a mere change of faces within the family and is suited for a monarchy, but not an elected position.
As OO continues later on: “The birthday carnival involving sports activities and merrymaking at venues across Uganda are indicative of latent mobilization which he has said is unstoppable. On his twitter account, Muhoozi has taunted his haters to watch the unfolding events saying “The enemies fought us for so long! They abused me with every name they could find! Now they can’t believe we have taken over the country! We will not stop until we are in complete control!” There’s no doubt, that Muhoozi, a disciplined professional soldier of repute, on his own merit, attracts great attention, and could as well upset the political alignment should he join the fray” (OO, 08.05.2022).
Well, the birthdays, the marathon and everything else is handled by paid performers and inner-circle officials. This is state sanctioned enterprises, which is reflected by the attendance and the need for free food and concerts to get people to show up. This is half-baked rallies to establish Muhoozi as a viable candidate and an aspiring as such. As his soon ticking 50 years old and still haven’t held any office or been active to prove himself. His only gotten advanced in the army and within the State House, because his the First Son of the President.
OO further says: “The widespread perception until evidence is adduced, is that Muhoozi, a serving officer, contrary to the Constitution and laws governing UPDF, is getting involved in what appears to be open politics and not being called to order. Muhoozi and many supporters present their acclaim as a generational shift to save the NRM revolution from decay among the restless young people who constitute over seventy percent of Uganda’s population whose aspirations aren’t being met” (OO, 08.05.2022).
Here is where OO must take people for fools. When everything is up for grabs. Everything is aligned and prepared for it. It is also very unique that a man close to his fifties is speaking and is tie to the youth. While all of his work is being an avenger and a man of ruthless violence. There is nothing in the past of Muhoozi, which is family friendly or of the sorts of peaceful mind. No, he comes to conquer, to destroy and avenge his father. That’s what he does with brutal results.
So, saying Muhoozi represents a generational shift… it is at least one lost generation plus the ones that is growing up today, because of his fathers lingering leadership. The lack of progress and regress is systemic. A part which Muhoozi a part of and is responsible for keeping alive. Muhoozi isn’t a voice of a new generation or of the decaying youth of the Republic. No, his just a continuation of his father with predetermined entitlement and arrogance.
The most ironic part was this: “There is need for NRM cadres to reinvigorate a culture of spirited debates in the marketplace of ideas because open criticism has declined, while obscurantism and dirty tricks become the dominant face of NRM politics. In this vision, ideological and intellectual exchanges should be unencumbered by personal attacks, harsh judgment, need for self-preservation or risk of occupational hazards. The main objective should be to preserve freedom of inquiry. Many leaders in NRM today seem more focused on curbing disagreements within and outside than finding and pursuing a principled ideological correct line to serve NRM and public interest. At the start of 11th parliament in 2021, NRM took its MPs-elect to the National Leadership Institute (NALI), Kyankwanzi for an orientation in liberation ideology, patriotism, commitment to national duties, political discipline, and humility in leadership” (OO, 08.05.2022).
The party of which is bound by the decree and orders from it’s chairman and the head of state. That one is supposed to get a new culture of spirited debates. The party of which all rebels and all dissenting voices has either been muted, banned or thrown out. The party that goes after the opposition with violence, pre-emptive arrests, torture and extra judicial killing. That party will suddenly become an open forum of ideas?
Who is OO kidding here? Not me… maybe a few gullible fellows who is sitting sideways on the porch. While the rest of us knows the gist. Muhoozi isn’t a man of free speech. Muhoozi isn’t a man of honour or bravery. No, his a man of brutality and an onslaught of violence. That sort of man will not come in peace and offer a new beginning. That isn’t happening. His not that kind… the leopard doesn’t change it’s spots. This is why the President called himself the “Leopards Anus” and said no one should “touch” him. Therefore, we are supposed to believe this? Now? After 36 years of the stalemate and one-man politicking? That his son will change that?
The ones who believe that must be deluded. The Lt. Gen. has been aspiring and wanting to takeover from his father. It wouldn’t be without a reason the Red Pepper and Daily Monitor closure for a week in 2013 and the exile of Gen. David Sejusa over nothing. That’s because this has been planned and is coordinated. Now the state and the government spokesperson tries to deflect and downplay it.
While it’s all in the open and the man itself is showing his plan on Twitter. His using social media to gain attention and show where he stands. If it is by the bullet or by the bible, which at times seems like both. However, hallow or shallow the faith is or as we all know.. that he swears to the gun and presumably prays for solace in church. Peace.
This week an anomaly happened. The ones supporting and actively supporting the National Resistance Movement (NRM) on Facebook got blocked by the site. The Online Company and Social Media platform has de-platformed several of NRM associated bloggers, pages and groups on Facebook. Some of them has lost their profiles and been suspended from there as well.
That says a lot. There been a sudden purge on their position on Facebook. A place where views, perspectives and spread of information is happening steadily. What is ironic here. The NRM is crying foul. The same supporters and activists, the same bloggers and associates of the NRM has had no issues blocking, hacking or violating pages of the opposition. The same NRM associated people have taken over opposition media houses pages and even deleted them. That has been during the campaigns. Therefore, maybe the same fellow breached “community standards” by inciting these acts and the opposition just notified the company.
That wouldn’t be shocking here as Ghetto TV and others been under fire on the same site. It is just a mention in the quest of things happening to the opposition. However, these sort of things doesn’t tend to happen to the NRM. The NRM is usually above these things and acting untouchable.
Now, the NRM SOMA, GCIC and Uganda Media Centre is losing its grip. As Facebook is an important platform on Social Media. They are not getting the venue for their space to spread their message in the final days to the polls. That is an act that backfire. Especially, if the NRM plans to act upon the “Scientific” campaigns. However, we know how that has worked of late.
I do feel sorry for the inconvenience, but they are just tasting the blunt action made towards them. As the NRM can easily block radio-stations, take away broadcasting licenses and stop publishing of newspapers in the Republic. That is if they are having high ranking opposition as guests on air or even getting their messages across for a long time. They are only lucky if they get short windows and limited space. While the NRM covers most of it.
This is why in the traditional media, the NRM and the President is covering most of it. His owning it in practice. Though on the social media and on newer platforms the opposition has an edge. This is why the recent actions of Facebook to de-platform the NRM groups, pages and persons are really hitting home.
What Facebook is actually doing is what the NRM does to the Opposition at home. They are blocking and making it impossible for them to speak. How many times has a opposition candidate tried to access a radio station and been blocked? Countless of times. The same is now happening to the NRM. In a manner, which they cannot control…
That is just karma in my view. They are tasting the same spirit, which they have delivered on a daily for years to the opposition. The men loyal to Museveni and his cause. Is now seeing the effects of their actions. These folks are tasting their own medicine.
Yes, they have a right to free speech. Yes, they have a right to express it and that is all justified. However, there is no human right to be part of Facebook. Secondly, if your part of Facebook. Then you have signed an agreement to uphold certain standards. However, if those is breached. The company can suspend or de-platform you, which they have done here. That is all natural.
The NRM apologists, activists and bloggers can find other avenues now. They can use other platforms and other places to spread their message. However, there are few sites who has more people connected and people accessing on the daily. Therefore, the blocking to the site is hurting them.
The NRM could start to mediate with Facebook. The NRM could try to talk and figure out how to get access again. What sort of amends and promises they need to get re-activated. I am sure they would let it happen. Alas, they rather cry foul and be victims.
Nevertheless, these folks aren’t that much of victims. These folks aren’t in danger of prison, abductions, arrests or torture even. No, these folk are in danger of house-arrests or fatalities. No, these folks are safe and surrounded by the elites. These people are eating. That is why it’s hard to feel sorry for them. Peace.
“This app will enhance the Presidents communication to the people. It will showcase achievements of NRM, profile of H.E. the President, and spread to the young people the knowledge that the President has been passing on including video messages” (National Resistance Movement, 28.09.2020).
It is really inspiring that the National Resistance Movement (NRM) launched the NRM App on 8th August 2020. That was clearly not enough, that is why the President and his team has launched a second one ahead of the General Elections in 2021. The “Scientific” ones, which is digital and that is why the governing party is doing all of this.
In 2018 the Republic introduced the Over-The-Top Taxes or the OTT Taxes. This was 200 shillings per day to access apps and social media. That means the same government that issued a high cost for digital content has launched two digital apps after that. Which the citizens has to pay a separate tax to the government to use.
So, if the citizens are supposed to access and use these “free apps”. They got to pay 200 shillings to use it. That is how misfortunate they are. To get the information in this way. They got to pay the state to get government information or access content, which is produced to praise the President.
Today on the 28th September 2020, they launched the Mzee NALO. Just like they launched the NRM APP earlier in August 2020. These both made to do the same, apparently. It is really ironic … because it is not like the NRM and the state doesn’t have a few avenues for information to the public already. They already have the NRM Social Media Team (NRM SOMA), New Vision, Uganda Media Centre, Various of Media Houses, Radio Stations and TV Stations too. Therefore, the President and NRM have plenty of places to spread their “vision” and “manifesto’s” to the world.
In 2018 the President wrote this about Social Media: “Social media chatting is a luxury by those who are enjoying themselves or those who are malicious” (Museveni, 04.07.2018).
Now, he wants to get the ones who uses that luxury and he intends to spread his message on these platforms. That is why he should make it free. Especially, if he wants the public to access to it. Since, some people couldn’t afford it.
For someone who says people are malicious on social media. The man surely uses lot of funds to promote himself there. Just like he recently “re-invented” himself on Instagram. We are just waiting for him to have a WhatsApp account and be on Tinder. That is what is missing.
The President should reconsider the 200 shillings of doom …. the OTT Tax and the Social Media Tax, which it is. If he believes everyone should be on the same page, then the platforms and apps should be free of access. Alas, that is not the case.
Yes, they are most likely propaganda … since they are praising the NRM and Mzee himself. We all know that, but propaganda should be free. Especially, if the ones it is intended to brainwash is supposed to read it or see the content.
Mzee should be proud of himself… OTT Tax and now this. Taxing people for propaganda. The man who called social media a luxury to begin with. Peace.
Last year in 2019, there was reports of a new Social Media Task Force for the National Resistance Movement (NRM), which had up to that point hired 49 people. The NRM already had their Social Media Activists (SOMA). So, they had two units work in co-ordination with each other. This is all attempts to steer the narrative and control the air-waves. Not new in that regard, but using modern methods to hit the public with information.
Just like all the other entities, which are government friendly press like the New Vision Group. The UBC, Government Citizen Interaction Centre (GCIC) and Uganda Media Centre to name a few.
In these COVID-19 lockdown times. The NRM together with the leader of the pack of the NRM Social Media Task Force, Duncan Abigaba have shown that they are feeding 245 bloggers. This is done through the kindness of Muhoozi Kainerubaga or the friends of him. They call them “Yellow influencers or bloggers” because that paint the picture. Even the blogger of Ashburg Katto is in the mix, so it seems its not far from the prison-cell to eating of the hand of the system.
These people will be instrumental to get the right vision ahead of the General Election of 2021. This is why they are even now doing deliveries and feeding them food. They are getting serviced by the state for a purpose. Because, these influencers can sway public opinion on social media and various of platforms. That is why Promoter Baalam and the Social Media Task Force of Abigaba is involved in this.
This is ensuring loyalty, as the payment of some rice and other foods during the pandemic. Will remind these Yellow Influencers whose their friends. They got to eat in the midst of it all, because hey are useful right now and in the future. Their platforms on the various of social media will be vital.
Its like 120 personalities on Social Media and about 120 bloggers, which is getting this treatment. This means these people are included and selected out, because of their writing and their content. This is because Duncan handpicked them and know what their up too.
That is what is striking is the amount of effort and to show their names on social media. These is our folks and comrades. Just go into Duncan Abigaba page on Facebook and the whole list will appear. It expose the ninjas writing and working directly for the NRM.
The Yellow Influencers if you may. The friends of Muhoozi is allowed to give these foods without any reinforcement of police nor any meetings with authorities. Because, they are working in-directly for the efforts for the state. This is partisan politics at its best. That information is being dropped on the day the UPF disclaim everything about Zaake whose healing after torture. That is the sort of state the Republic is in.
Where Yellow Influencers can get a food-drive by the Son-of-the-President. But opposition doing the same to his constituents are healing in the hospital after meeting the authorities. That is the double standard and the realities on the ground.
That Baalam and Abigaba is above Zaake is now clear as day. That the Yellow Influencers are important is clear too. They will be a tool into the elections and the campaigns, spreading the message of the “Yellow Bastard”. Peace.