President Museveni, Being army number RA/15611, I highly regret having been among the 20000 men and women whom you manipulated to bring you to power in Jan 1986. In this regard, I apologise to Ugandans who are oppressed by your brutal regime.
Throughout my military service, I served under Military Intelligence as an Intelligence Officer for different units before moving to the head office. I took charge of secretarial duties in the office of the Director of Military Intelligence and later in the Deputy Director’s office (then Aronda Nyakarima). Therefore, I had the privilege of seeing it all from the inside.
In 2000, I retired in protest after realising that what had taken place in 1986 had been a mere change of guards and not a revolution. Above all, I was lucky to have jumped out of the system before your security services contracted ‘rabies’ that have made them wreck the country with state inspired gross human rights violations.
I briefly served as a State Prosecutor under the DPP but had to quit for I couldn’t cope up with the police corruption. Later, I took charge of security and law enforcement at the Wildlife Authority. In October 2004, I undertook investigations into a ,3.8 ton ivory consignment that had been impounded in China after originating from Uganda and transiting through the Kenyan port of Mombasa. Already, I got leads that were linking the consignment to some key figures in your government.
Just a day after I had returned from Nairobi, I was kidnapped by your security agents and tortured in safe houses (secret torture chambers). Had it not been for the intervention of the ICRC, I would have disappeared without trace like had been the case with several others.
Later, I was transferred and detained at Nakindye military barracks without trial over fabricated charges of treason associated with the alleged Rwanda backing of the shadowy PRA rebel group that you linked to opposition leader Dr. Besigye. At one time I had to go on a hunger strike demanding for a trial but instead I was brutally tortured only to be saved once again by the ICRC.
During the 20 months of incarceration, I was greatly irritated by your reckless, irresponsible and unfortunate public statement to the effect that “I have put them in a secure place where they can’t escape”. Much as I wanted to regain my freedom, I also wanted to disprove you on this. Indeed, in June 2006, I left Makindye barracks on my own terms though amidst heavy gunfire from your lousy guards. At one time, you also escaped from Amin agents by jumping over a hedge though you had really sneaked into the country for anti-government activities.
Here in exile, your security services have made several attempts to get their claws on my body in total disregard of the fact that am under international protection. Sometime back your then Chief of Military Intelligence Brig. Mugira and Internal Security Chief Col. Roni Balya attempted to lure me into a trap. The two sent to me an email message suggesting that I write to you a letter confessing my alleges treasonous crimes and ask for forgiveness as a pre-condition for my return to Uganda. To me this was the highest level of arrogance and hypocrisy which I treated with the contempt it deserved. How on earth can a whole security chief expect a confession from someone who is in exile that could not be extracted under torture while in captivity!
By law, your powers are limited to pardoning convicts and not mere suspects. Similarly, though you had voluntarily walked into exile in the 1970s, would you have accepted a similar offer from the Amin government for your return?
Mr President, Iam totally opposed to your governance on the following grounds:-
1. You harboured childhood presidential ambitions. With this in mind, immediately after school you joined UPC government security services. To pursue this ambition, just a day after Iddi Amin took over power you voluntarily went into self-imposed exile in Tanzania. While in exile, you ran parallel clandestine hit squads inside Uganda that were responsible for causing a lot of mayhem that were attributed in part to the Iddi Amin regime. At the same time, in exile you undermined other anti Amin individuals and groups in order to shape your own position.
Iddi Amin was defeated by the main group of Obote’s Kikosi Malum under the able command of Tito Okello, Oyie Ojok, Bazilio Okello and others baked by Tanzania’s TPDF. Your much acclaimed FRONASA played an insignificant role in in the actual fighting. At the time of the invasion from Tanzania, and in major battles before the fall of Kampala in April 1979, your FRONASA existed only by name. Yes, immediately after the war entered Ugandan territory, you embarked on recruiting a personal army from western region especially from among Rwandese refugees.
2. After the fall of Iddi Amin, for fear that a stable post Amin Uganda would not favour your presidential ambitions; you contributed a lot to the instability that ensued. To achieve this goal, you used your strategic and influential positions as Minister of defence, Vice Chairman of the powerful military commission, and leader of your personal armed faction (FRONASA) that was part of the new Uganda army. As a consequence, two post Amin sitting Presidents were ousted within a period of less than two years. The killings in Kampala and your brutal suppression of protesters in 1979 are well documented.
Though you were opposed to the idea of a post Amin democratic election, you contested for the presidency as a UPM flag bearer well knowing that you miserably loose. You were out rightly rejected by Ugandans right from your home village where locals cut down your maize field. Indeed you were freely and fairly defeated right from your own constituency where you were genuinely defeated by DP’s Sam Kutees, your current permanent Minister of foreign affairs. Throughout the country, your party (UPM) secured only one seat in parliament. Though the elections took place at a time the country was governed by the Military Commission for which you were its Chairman, you did not resign in protest against the alleged election rigging. The two major contestants in the 1980 elections were the DPand the UPC and if there was any rigging it was against the DP and not your UPM. If anything, you were in favour of the DP loosing because the reverse wold have denied you an opportunity to launch your pre-planned bloody bush war from DP’s strong hold of Buganda region. Compared to the several rounds of sham and violent elections that have been held under your governance, the 1980 elections was a fairer exercise.
3. For almost two months following the conclusion of the December 1980 elections, you were a free citizen up to the time you voluntarily choose to launch a war against the one month old UPC government. Your guerrilla war had long been pre-planned and not precipitated by the alleged election rigging. As Minister of Defence, Vice Chairman of the powerful Military Commission, and leader of an armed faction (FRONASA) of the new national army, you had in advance made sufficient preparations in terms of logistics, intelligence and personnel. Before the elections, you had retained and set aside a personal army composed of mainly Rwandese refugees who had legally been excluded from the new national army. It is these Rwandese refugees who formed a core of your fighting group who in recognition of their serviced you helped to invade their country Rwanda culminating into the 1994 genocide. You opportunistically solicited financial and logistical support from Libya’s Gadafi though he a short while ago militarily supported the collapsing Iddi Amin regime. You mobilised former soldiers of the Iddi Amin government from the western and central regions and incorporated them into your ethnic guerrilla army.
Aware of Buganda’s historical political strength in Uganda, you chose to fight from Buganda territory. Your aim was to resurrect, foment and exploit the historical differences between UPC (Obote in particular) and Buganda. In the same regard, you opportunistically moved very fast to merge your armed group with that of Prof. Lule to form yout NRM. However, you tactically positioned yourself as the Chairman of the strategic military wing’s High command leaving Prof. Lule as a mere figure head just to hoodwink the Baganda. To further consolidate Buganda’s much needed support, you undermined and sabotaged other pro-Buganda/DP fighting groups notably Kayira’s UFM.
No wonder, after you had exhausted Buganda’s support, your NRM’s founding Chairman Prof. Lule had to die a few months before Kampala fell. By virtue of his position as the Chairman of your NRM, Prof. Lule was slated to become the President of Uganda upon the coming into power of your NRM in Jan 1986. To be sincere, even if Prof. Lule had not died you would not have allowed him to become President. Maybe, at worst, it would have been like the Alex Kanyerengwe/Bizimungu/Paulo Kagame kind of situation in Rwanda.
4. Though imitating the Chinese and Cuban revolutions, your armed rebellion never attracted a mass uprising. Instead, it thrived on building an ethnic army with a mission of dislodging the presumed Nothern region’s dominance of the army and government. People from the northern region were refered to as Anyanyas who in turn refered to those from the Southern and western region as Nyarwandas (Rwandese) because of the visibility of Rwandese refugees in your army. The army officer that you posted to the nothern region district of Gulu as the district administrator, Kayumba Nyamwasa, was later to head the army in Rwanda. This id what gave rise to successive rebellions in the northern and eastern regions that is now taking the form of secession demands.
During your armed rebellion, you applied and adopted very crude methods of committing atrocities designed to tarnish the then government image. This in turn gave rise to five different categories of people who joined hands with you i.e those like yourself who were driven by ambition of getting into power, those who were unsuspectingly compelled by the situation you had created and craved for change, those innocent peasants that you took hostage and turned them into fighters and supporters, those criminals escaping justice and the Rwandese refugees looking for an opportunity to invade their country. No doubt, such a combination lacked the unity of purpose and would not have managed to overthrow the UPC government had its own military not overthrown it.
Shortly after, you managed to dislodge the military junta only through treachery and manipulation under the guise of the Nairobi Peace Talks of 1986. You owe alot of credit to the Okkellos for having overthrown the UPC government.and handed over power to you. In appreciation, you have alwayd appointed Tito okellos son to ministerial position. If I may remind you, you have forgotten Col Julius Oketa who helped a lot to break the stalemate at Katonga Bridge that cleared the way for an easy march on Kampala in Jan. 1986.
5. Right from its inception, your army was designed to be and is indeed is a personal army. To achieve this goal, you have maintained a personal and historical controll of its recruitment, training, deployment, promotion, dismissal, retirement, procurement/ utilisation of logistics and formulation of its policy and doctrine. This is how you managed to deliberately keep the likes if Eriya Kategaya, Amanya Mushega, Kahinda Otafiire, and other historical members of NRM from the main stream military structure. In the same way, in the mid 90s,driven by ethnic considerations. You diverted Gen Katumba Wamala and Gen. Ivan Koreta to Police and ISO respectively in order to give way to the likes of Aronda and Kaziini to rise to the top office of Army commander. Yet, the highest Kaziini should have gone would have been to be a Sergeant in-charge of the mortuary in a military hospital.
Your army is a private security company funded by the state in the same way Capt FD Lugard raised tan army for the IBEA during colonial days. It is with this personal army that you set up a military government since 1986. Your army has been at the centre if national and regional politics. It is for fear of being linkened to Iddi Amin’s style of governance that you have been slow in in appointing army officers to local administration, parastatals and other government bodies.
In this regard, you have severally warned other national leaders to keep off your army. Amazingly, the then Vice President Gilbert Bukenya went ahead to enlist his son for officer cadet training. The poor chap died mysteriously before completing the Cadet course.
Your personal army arrests, shoots to kill, tortures and detains without trial in safe housed secret torture chambers. Now that the police has been fused with some army units have been fused with the police, it has taken a centre stage in the brutal suppression of dissenting voices. The recent elevation and appointment of your most right hand man and former army chief as Minister of internal Affairs, is a testimony to tougher times for Ugandans in the near future. You wrongly believe that with this personal army in place nothing can dislodge you from power. Thus, driven by the same belief, when NATO intervened in Libya, you contended thus; “….this is a new phenomenon, and if that is the case, we shall have another Vietnam”. To this end, you have always argued for “African solution to African problems” because you believe that without external military intervention, nothing can dislodge the African dictator from power. For the same reasons, of recent you have spearheaded the fight against the ICC arguing that it targets only African leaders.
Indeed, in preparation for another Vietnam, you have created a more personal army (SFH) within your personal army and placed it under the command of your own son. Your recent trip to Russia alludes to this Vietnam project.
For fear of losing grip on the army, you are the Commander in Chief, Chief of Defence Forces and Coordinator of Intelligence Services. All those that you appoint to such offices are mere political aides to you. Gen. Tinyefuza was not coordinating any intelligence services because he himself has been a subject of security surveillance for close to two decades now but unfortunately, he took long to realise this. What a relief to you now that he is very far from your army for you always believed that other than him, nobody else can carry out a military coup.
Of course, those who talk much about your son Muhoozi’s rapid rise on the army don’t know that even before Muhoozi joined the army you already had another son in the same army. You stated this yourself when you filled the Army’s Property Declaration Forms in the late 1980s. You have no intention of handing over power even to your son except that you are preparing him to take charge of the special force that will ensure that your life presidency project becomes a reality.
6. You fought and took over power during the cold war era and no doubt you were pro east. Your political indoctrination (political education) teachings emphasised that the struggle was against western imperialism while describing israel as zionists and the west as imperislists. These cadre courses were muddled along the teachings of Mao, Stalin, Fidel Castrol and Gadhafi among others as your role models. To win western suport, you have exploited the global fight against terrorism. Domestically, you have used the global fight against terrorism as a tool to brutally suppress dissenting voices. By having your personal army in Somalia, you have held the West at ransom. In 2011 as the world was waiting to see if you would seek another term in office, Kampala was hit by a terrorist attack allegedly by Al-shabab as if Kampla was a softer target than Bujumbura! Amidist the confusion that ensued, you embarked on election campaigns for a third term in office. When the recent UN report implicated you in supporting the rebel M23 in DRC, you shamefuly protested and threatened to pull out of Somalia. Initially, to ensure continued western support you had intended to deliberately prolong the Somali operation. Kenya’s intervention and rapid successes prompted your troops for the first time in many years to push beyond their traditional encampments at the airport and the presidential palace. As was he case with the Rwandese troops in the DRC’s town of Kisangani in the early 90s, I believe at some point your troops will clash with their Kenyan counterparts inside somali. You created and armed different militia groups in the DRC. It is you who made the ICC indictee militia leaders like Jp Bemba, Tom Lubanga, and Bosco Ntaganda what they became. Your army entered the CA Republic and and brutally suppressed the mutiny. You personally flew to the DRC’s northern town of Gbadolite to welcome back your victorious troops from the CAR. In appreciation, you ordered for them plane loads of fresh meat from Kampala. Instead, it is MLC’s JP Bemba who was acused of committing attrocities in the CAR.
You ordered then Col Angina to retrive all the UG (Uganda) enscrypted AK 47 assault riffles that had been supplied to the deserting militias in Ituri. Although the supposedly scapegoat Gen Kaziini mysteriously died, the overwhelming evidence against other key players is live and kicking. It is this impunity that has made you to once again indulge in the DRC’s internal affairs by supporting the M23.
No doubt, to futher attract western support, you would wish to forment and get involved in the Juba/Khartum misunderstandings. Driven by ethinic considerations in relation to the Luos of Northern Uganda, you were not in favour of Railla Oginga’s victory. Once the revenues from the oil production are in place, you will be able to finance military expeditions in the region.
7. Having come to power through treachery and high level political manipulation, you have continued to hold it fraudlently. You defiled the infant constituton toremove presidential term limits. Throughout all the sham elections you have conducted, you have never and can not win in a free and fair elections. In the last elections, you shifted from your traditional methods of violence, intimidation and ballot box stuffing. Instead, you ambushed the opposition by a last minute emptying of the national Treasury to bribe voters, polling assistants and a big section of the opposition polling agents. Thanks to your policy of delibarately keeping big sections of Ugandas in abject poverty such that a kilogram of sugar can influence the voter’s decision.
Now that you have exhausted all the rigging methods coupled by mounting pressure to relinguish power, what is remaining is to bend the legislature through intimidation, threats to life and bribery. Your NRM parliamentary caucus conveys your wishes to the majorty NRM members in parliament for passing on the floor of the house. You expell elected members of parliament who tend to tow independent thinking. Your recent elevation and apointment of your right hand man and former Army Chief to the Ministry of Internal Affairs is some kind of an indirect declaration of a state of emergency in the country. Ugandans should expect the worst in as far as civil liberty, justice and law enforcement are concerned. This is what you meant by the recent coup threat. Sincerely, a coup against who and by who! Your private army has invaded courts of law to influence and reverse court decisions. Your NRM Cadres are taking up strategic positions in the Judiciary. You have incorporated the police into the military. The colonial era law of Preventive Detention has been reactivated and enforced against dissenters. Your current efforts to spearhead opposition to ICC are designed to propagate impunity.
Your mentor, Tanzania’s former President Nyerere applied the above means to retain power. He only succeeded in having his countrymen succumb to oppression, economically destroying a naturally endowed country and creating an impression to outsiders that the country was peaceful. However, current figures indicate an alarming rate of citizens killing police personnel in broad daylight reprisal attacks.
When you took to fighting in 1981, the them President Milton Obote described your group as bandits. When you took over power in 1986, you promissed to cteate a middle class. Instead, a top class comprised of your family members and cronies has emerged from the 27 years of institutionalised baditry. Outright plunder of public resources, corruption, abuse of office, nepotism, secterianism and political patronage that the country is witnessing has never been witnessed before. Its a lasting legasy that you will be remembered for.
Though traditionally in the Defence sector whose accounts are not open to public scrutiny, swindling of public resources has in recent years spread to all the other corners of the Uganda society. Because the vice is a means of ensuring loyality and luring fence sitters into your NRM clique, your government lacks the moral authority to stop it. Because of pressure especially from the donor community, there is selective and inconclusive criminal proceedings. Once news headlines are made, the suspects are exonerated, set free, promoted, transferred, reinstated or reassigned. However, to please the donors, a few unlucky beneficiaries may face full criminal proceedings more especially those whose political clarity is doubtable.
The situation pertaining to your authoritarianism is expected to worsen once the oil production commences for you will not be listening to ‘lecturers from the west’ over democracy, human rights and rule of law. The country is more divided now along ethnic lines than ever before. Your advocacy for an East African federation is aimed at nothing else other than securing a regional military alliance that will intervene to avert any threat to your life presidency project.
Therefore, your senseless war following the ouster of Idi Amin was not a revolution but a change of guards. It retarded the country’s economic growth on equall footing. Currently, economic growth is a privilege your family and cronies who have unlimited access to public resources. Thank You
Member of UAH