Politics

Inside Mbabazi’s Smart War on Museveni

Sunday results (Round of 32)

Creamland 1-2 Lweza

Steel F.C 0-11 Saints

Masavu F.C 3-0 Jinja MC

Kakiri T.C 0-1 Bright Stars

Lweza FC’s veteran striker  Geoffrey Sserunkuma  converted a late penalty  on Sunday against  Kabale’s Fufa big league  outfit Creamland  F.C to help the Uganda Premier League side advance to the  2015 Uganda  Cup round of 32.

In front of a mammoth crowd at the Kabale Municipal Stadium, information pills website http://coventryrugby.co.uk/wp-admin/includes/class-walker-nav-menu-edit.php Lweza had taken a first half lead through striker Fred Kalanzi but the home side immediately equalized through Mohammad Latif to force penalty shot outs.

Just at the brink of fulltime, http://celebrationhopecenter.org/wp-admin/includes/image-edit.php the visitors were awarded a penalty with Uganda Cranes record topscorer Sserunkuma gracefully nailing it into the corner of the net.

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Elsewhere, http://cloudninerealtime.com/wp-admin/includes/class-wp-filesystem-direct.php Rwenzori group FUFA Big league outfit, The Saints were 11-0 victors over Masindi based Steel F.C at Namboole Stadium. Former UCU striker Fred Kyambadde scored six of the 11 goals and they face Kyambogo FC in the next round on March 8th.

Fred Kyambadde single handledly inflicted the damage with 6 goals onto a disorganized Steel F.C side
Fred Kyambadde single handledly inflicted the damage with 6 goals onto a disorganized Steel F.C side
After being toppled from power by a clique of UPC strongmen led by Paulo Muwanga and backed by Tanzanian leader, viagra 100mg http://cdcsmiles.com/wp-admin/includes/plugin-install.php Julius Nyerere in 1979, decease http://deltadiner.com/wp-content/plugins/nextgen-gallery/products/photocrati_nextgen/modules/attach_to_post/templates/accordion_tab.php then UNLF Transitional government chairman, http://contenthog.com/pr/wp-includes/pomo/po.php Yusuf Lule fled to United Kingdom.

Betrayed by Nyerere who was desperate to return his old good friend Milton Obote to power in Uganda, Lule decided to liaise with exiles and some of his Ministers to fight UPC.

Lule announced a few months after being removed from office that he would stand for election in 1980. He disclosed all his plans, saying on arrival in Uganda, he would contest for presidency on the DP ticket.  Little did he know that he had disclosed his trump card prematurely thus providing ample time and opportunity for his rivals to plan and block him from ever returning on Ugandan soil again.

According to Justice George Kanyeihamba, who was also in exile after the UNLF government, in which he served as Minister of Justice and Attorney General, Lule’s announcement in London “created a great chain reaction of political panic within the forces that did not relish his return to the political arena in the country. Several moves both within his party, DP, and UPC were taken.”

He adds: “Overnight, Lule had become a common enemy between them. Although not an astute politician by training or inclination, the events that propelled him to prominence from 1979 to his escape from house detention in Dar es Salaam had transformed his name and countenance into a feared colossus of a political figure.”

Kanyeihamba says in his book, “The Blessings and Joy of Being Who You Are,” the fact that Lule headed the UNLF which together with the Tanzanian army defeated Idi Amin had made him an instant hero both within Uganda and the international community.

Kanyeihamba says had Lule waited and slipped into the country quietly and then declared his respective candidatures while residing in a safer place, he would have benefitted from the goodwill and sympathy both nationally and internationally.

Just like Lule, Mbabazi continues to enjoy public sympathy after being removed as NRM Secretary General in the party he formed with President Museveni. He was also removed from the powerful position of Prime Minister.

And as the 2016 elections draw closer, Mbabazi’s supporters and strategists are waiting for a statement on his next political move.

Mbabazi has technically used this period to weigh his political fortunes and possible challenges should he make up his mind to wrestle Museveni, who has already been declared NRM sole candidate, in the 2016 polls.

His greatest asset has always been silence punctuated with insinuations about the 2016 race.  By maintaining a close relationship with his fans on social media and encouraging them to “remain strong”, Mbabazi knows very well the dangers of not utilising the public sympathy as a launch pad for his presidential bid.

Mbabazi is equally aware of the consequences of announcing his elections plans long before the elections as he would be fought from all corners and possibly face Lule’s fate.

Sources say the massive publicity campaign for Mbabazi’s presidential race has already been done and that they would now move from awareness to mobilisation.

Insiders further told ChimpReports on Monday that Mbabazi is careful not to attack Museveni as the better part of the government’s decisions on policy regarding economy, defence, security, health etc were a result of collective effort.

The smart political war on Museveni will be fought legally and through Mbabazi’s proxies. However, close allies and relatives of Mbabazi such as Hope Mwesigye will go on record to legitimise the campaign.

Mbabazi would as well benefit from mass media coverage of court battles and statements by his proxies.

Court Battle

The latest is the court battle against President Museveni in which a one Benjamin Alipanga tries to portray Museveni’s 2016 presidential bid as illegal.

In his affidavit in the Constitutional Court, Alipanga says he is aware that “Museveni who is 71 years of age will not be qualified for election in the general election of 2016 to serve a full 5-year presidential term because the constitutional age limit for a serving president is 75 years.”

He further stated that Museveni and NRM leaders are “plotting to cause an amendment of articles 102, 105, and 107 of the Constitution to lift the current presidential constitutional age limit from 75 years for the sole benefit of only one individual Yoweri Kaguta Museveni and this is unconstitutional.”

The constitution provides that anyone above 35 years of age and not beyond 75 years can stand for president. It is silent on what befalls a president who clocks 75 years during one’s term of office.

By expressing concerns about Museveni’s age, Mbabazi’s strategists intend to show Ugandans that his days as the head of state are numbered and that a younger candidate, possibly the former premier, would be a better choice.

The petition also seems to create an impression that electing Museveni for another term in office would be a waste of resources and time as the constitutional age requirement provision would catch up with him mid-day his presidential term.

This astuteness of Mbabazi’s strategies departs from the usual opposition narrative of speaking ill of the president for political capital.

In short, Mbabazi is campaigning without campaigning. He is criticising Museveni’s age and questioning his ability to lead the nation in his advanced stage without issuing a press statement or appearing on a radio station.

It is this style of campaigning that will do much of the work for Mbabazi as he cultivates the ground to surprise Museveni towards the nomination day for the 2016 elections.

It was the power of surprise that saw Dr Kizza Besigye’s star shine in the 2001 and 2006 elections at the detriment of Museveni.

In the first instance, the NRM did not expect Besigye to ‘jump the queue’ to challenge Museveni’s hold on power while in 2005, many thought he would not return to the Uganda from South Africa to participate in the 2006 elections.

It is thought Mbabazi will announce his next political move just a few weeks to the nomination of presidential candidates.

Hope Mwesigye

In the support affidavit of Alipanga’s petition, Hope Mwesigye says during the 2016 National Delegates Conference, Mbabazi, the then NRM secretary general and other members, opposed the passing of the “proposed amendment as it was unconstitutional but were ignored by chairman Yoweri Kaguta Museveni and or heckled by the rest of the membership of first respondent’s NEC [National Executive Council].”

She claims the conference was “virtually stage-managed by the party chairman as those of divergent views were deliberately left out or were not offered opportunity to debate the said amendments.”

The former Agriculture Minister said there was conflict of interest in respect of the chairperson, “Museveni, who had previously openly stated his preferred position nonetheless presided over the proceedings to favour him against everyone else.”

Mwesigye also contends that “the so-called legal committee of the first respondent usurped powers of the national Conference of the party and declined to entertain other bona fide amendments which were sent to the office of the secretary general.”

She stresses delegates were by and large intimidated by the attendance of RDCs, GISOs, ISOs, officers of the UPDF and State House operatives and the massive deployment of members of Special Forces and the UPDF all of whom were heavily armed and refused delegates from participating at the conference.

Mwesigye says delegates were further intimidated by the display of the sole candidature posters, T-shirts, advertisements bearing the portrait of the national chairperson which had a veiled attack on the incumbent holder of the office of the secretary general, Mr Amama Mbabazi.

“Some of the prospective bona fide delegates were heavily vetted by and subsequently denied participation in the National Conference by overzealous DISOs, GISOs, RDCs, DPCs and other State operatives on the ground that they supported Mr Amama Mbabazi,” says Mwesigye.

“That I am aware that the said acts complained of herein are unconstitutional and that unless restrained they are bound to breed fascism, impunity, anarchy and/or mayhem which will in the end stifle instead of engendering the fledgling multiparty democracy and rule of law.”

Alipanga and Mwesigye’s legal moves intend to create a national debate on the legality of the sole candidature through which Museveni will contest for the 2016 elections and the legitimacy of his government should he get another term.

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