By Mike Ssegawa
Dear Evelyn Anite, Minister of Investment. I am one of the Ugandans who follow political developments in our country because it is a duty of each one of us, Ugandans, to know and take part in the political, social and economic development of our country.
It is a fact that the biggest political debate in the country today is about succession.
There are people like you who believe President Museveni, who has been a leader of this country since 1986, should keep in the driving seat. And since the constitution which Mr Museveni worked so hard to make, does not accommodate him to run in 2021 since he will be above 75 (age limit for president), there are efforts to amend that provision in Article 102 (b) to give him an uninterrupted run.
There is also another group that believes the president has worked so hard for this country. Three decades is not a short time. This group believes it is selfish of him to run this country ad infinitum and a new driver should come to breathe fresh air into the country. Despite his good run, there are a number of things that have honestly eluded Mr Museveni, including the fight against corruption. The economic recovery which was part of his successes alongside security is now in decline.
There is also the issue of fatigue in the country. This country used to be one for optimists, now, everyone is getting deluded, seeing no end in sight. A new captain could ensure the things that have failed Mr Museveni, can be done using other mechanisms.
In political debates, people continue to talk until they put matters to a vote that they fail to get consensus about. The winners take the day; whether they are right or wrong. That is politics. And I will not fault you on that, Anite.
However, I have an issue that I want you to keep off. I am sure even your boss, Mr Museveni will not like it when you utter such rubbish, now or next time.
While addressing the press on Thursday, you said your party has the support of the “magye” (army) in case those opposed to the age limit continue to threaten you.
Isn’t it true that such matters you can refer to the police if they arise if the threat is actual, madam, and not the military?
Dear Anite, Ugandans, pro-NRM, opposition and independents like me, value our military. We have come a long way. We do not want our military to get involved in your political problems.
If you have not received the lecture on the history of UPDF, and other militaries before it, you need to return to Kyankwanzi one of these days and concentrate on this topic.
However in short, Ugandans love a non partisan army, whose interest is to protect the sovereignty of this land. And they are doing a great job.
The militaries of the past however hijacked the political processes of this country and that is how our history is littered with blood. We do not want blood to spill here again.
Anite, I am disappointed in you because as investments minister, you cannot appeal to the army to come and solve your political challenges. You know what that statement means, especially when it comes to the confidence of investors in the country.
So, I ask you to refrain from referring to UPDF again. For the first time, the UPDF is in the hands of people who were not part of Luweero, Amin or Obote problems. We have soldiers who are pro-citizens. And therefore, I felt so bad when I heard you make those absurd statements.
To our military, I ask you to refrain from this conversation in line of Anite. I know UPDF is a politically conscious military, and you know where to stop in involving yourself in affairs of these confused civilians fighting for their political lives.
In conclusion, I call upon President Museveni to restrain his people from involving our military in affairs civilians can resolve. Mr President, I will save this space because for you I don’t need to remind you what Ms Anite’s statement means. Let us keep our army out of of the murky waters of succession debates.
Yours, an ordinary voter from Masaka, Mike Ssegawa