Uganda political elites should stop acting like we’re in a democracy, and address the matter not the periphery. The comments made by Anite, that the “Maggye” read “army” would support (meaning enforce) or crush political/civilian opposition to the amendment of article 102 (b) to remove presidential age limit from the constitution, such comments are not mad or unfounded. In-fact, in fact they are nothing but bitter truths which Ugandan political elites pretend not to know. The NRM government came to power, not by its leader being elected into office but force of arms. It has kept power that way by now turning the arms to the civilians with opposing leadership ideas. So at what point does Anita become the problem.
Ugandan so called elites, either out of cowardice or disillusionment, try and deflect the problem, and pretend not to understand the reality they are in.
The comments are real, bitter truth with countless examples and precedence of using military force as and when the NRM is cornered in debate and politics.
An article last year appeared in Foreign Policy, published under the title: Is the U.S. Military Propping Up Uganda’s ‘Elected’ Autocrat? in which the writer noted clearly that Ugandan security forces totally disregard democratic rules.
So why is local media focusing on calling her out and trying to get her to dismiss her remarks, yet they are backed by facts and Uganda’s army has never left politics?
Ugandans should discuss the subject matter and call out the NRA cum UPDF itself, because its officers are on camera actively engaging in politics in favour of the regime.
Most security organs of the state, including police, intelligence agencies, land forces, air forces, reserve forces are not lacking full-time regime ‘cadres’, doing political work both within the military and with the public. Kakooza mutable, for example a high ranking officer in the army, who was seen on national television, training militias to fight for the regime in the last election, and giving warnings to opposition politicians.
So, please media and elites discussing this matter, it is not Anite the problem. It is that ever since the country fell to the NRA army and it took over government, keeping the power became the new mission of the armed former rebels. They see it as their right to do so because they did not get the power by ballot in the first place. All the resulting, concocted forms of government preferred by the regime have been quasi-military. Stop confusing yourselves. You’re not in a democracy. If you’re going to remove the regime, then you must contend with its military as well. Without a plan for winning over or dealing with the regime’s military, the plans are incomplete and subject to fail, because the regime will call in the military in as if it is a national service, to protect it from civilian takeover.