UK: A Statement from Ugandans in the Diaspora

By United Ugandans Pro-democratic Forum (UUPF) – We Ugandans in the Diaspora condemn in the strongest terms the brutal attack on FDC leader Kizza Besigye, the imprisonment of DP leader Nobert Mao, and the constant harassment and killing and maiming of their supporters by the Uganda police and UPDF. We also condemn the NRM government and President Museveni in particular for the intransigence and arrogance towards the people of Uganda. Never before have we witnessed scenes like we saw last week,not even in the dark days of Idi Amin.

Uganda is a signatory to The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (1966) and The International Covenant on Social,Economic and Cultural Rights (1966). It is also a signatory to The International Convention against  torture  and other cruel,degrading and inhumane treatment or punishment as part of the Human Rights instrument. We think the current Uganda government has breached all the above conventions and should therefore face trial before the international community and be held to account.

Comments and statements  coming out of state house,cabinet ministers and Mr Museveni himself continue to inflame the situation. There is no doubt there is economic hardship,but this is not the best way a government in power with 68% of the national vote should behave. Instead of tackling the root cause of the problem,government is only fighting the symptoms,perhaps knowing very well that the root cause is of its own making and is now beyond reversal. The opulence spending,the never ending corruption and the printing of money to steal the recently concluded election have distabilised the fragile cash economy leading to double digit inflation and hence the ‘Walk to Work’ campaign.

What did Museveni and his central bank governor Tumusime Mutebile think when the dished out cash and emptied the national treasury? This is the consequence. Instead of fighting the inflation with pen,paper and policy to stabilise the Uganda shilling on the dollar market,they are using guns and teargas on unarmed civilians and opposition politicians for highlighting the problem.The explanation offered by the government blaming factors outside the country is pathetic and weak. Most countries have experienced a hike in the cost of crude oil but their inflation did not double overnight. Mr Museveni and his ministers are taking Ugandans for a ride. The Ugandans in the diaspora who remit every spare cash they earn are deeply unhappy ,angry and upset by what is unfolding at home and at a government that doesn’t seem to care about the welfare of its people.

We strongly condemn comments by the interior minister Kirunda Kivejinja,the information minister Kabakumba Masiko and president Museveni himself which comments lack not only sensitivity but also human feeling. Killing the opposition will not kill the problem. Think.  Your negative contribution to Uganda has exceeded any positive contribution so far made for the country.

Given what has happened in the Arab world ,Museveni’s government is fearful and guilty of its own position given its bad track record on issues that directly affect the man on the street. The government knows people are unhappy with Museveni for manipulating the national constitution through bribery to make himself   life president , for overseeing rampant corruption and dilapidated public services like hospitals.

The only reasonable option for Museveni and his corrupt government is to leave office or face the rath of the population.