News of a proposed new Bill to let members of parliament elect the next president as opposed to the whole country voting has set social media ablaze.
Members of opposition have expressed dissatisfaction about the bill taking to social media.
Known for targeting the members of the first family, the opposition is using this bill as an opportunity to further their agenda. In the cross fires this time around their focus is on Lt Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba.
While commenting on the proposed law to change the presidential elections from the current universal adult suffrage to a hybrid parliamentary system, the National Unity Platform party president, Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine, argued that President Museveni having been ’roundly defeated’ in the last election, now wants to take away the right of the people of Uganda to elect their President.
“Of course, he plans to do this in order to impose his son on us, well knowing that he can’t even get 5% of a popular vote,” Kyagulanyi said in a tweet on Thursday.
But there is no evidence of this bill is coming from either the president or the first son who holds no office in the NRM party. In fact, a section of the National Resistance Movement (NRM) party cadres also have clarified that Lt Gen. Muhoozi Kainerugaba is not the brainchild of the proposed law .
The Transformer Cadres’ Association Uganda is a group of NRM parliamentary candidates that lost in the 2020 party primaries. It is led by Felix Adupa Ongwech, the former Kioga County parliamentary contestant in Amolatar district.
“One thing we must admit and understand is that Gen. Muhoozi is the commander of land forces. He hasn’t yet retired from the army and the UPDF (Uganda People’s Defense Forces) Act is very clear that a serving officer cannot engage in politics,” Ongwech, who stood as an independent after losing the NRM primaries, told journalists at Kati Kati Restaurant in Kampala on Thursday.
“But we have retired Col Sebastian Cherotin (from Kapchorwa) who is now in politics, we have retired Lt Mugisha Magufuri from Ntungamo, we have retired Maj. Geoffrey Mugweri (from Iki-iki in Budaka); I have not seen Muhoozi here talking about politics,” he contended.
Ongwech, also added that: “Every Ugandan has a Constitutional right to contest for the presidency but we are not a Muhoozi project.”
The group was responding to earlier claims by opposition politician Robert Kyagulanyi, linking the proposal to the First Son.
Former coordinator of intelligence services, Gen David Sejusa, stirred up a storm when he claimed that there was a plot to assassinate senior government officials and army officers opposed to a future Muhoozi presidency in 2013.
However, Muhoozi, who is also President Yoweri Museveni’s senior advisor on special operations, denied these allegations.
“Uganda is not a monarchy where leadership is passed on from father to son. This so-called ‘Muhoozi project’ is a people’s creation,” the then Brigadier said in a statement released by Special Forces.
He said that the power to choose how Uganda is governed lies with Ugandans and not a single individual as some people would want them to believe.
In an interview with France 24 international television network in September 2021, President Museveni said people who allege that he is grooming Muhoozi to succeed him are not serious.
“They are not serious. Why should I groom my son? The people of Uganda are there; they will select whom they want,” he said in his response to the claims.
The opposition in Uganda lacks what to tell the population and focus on hate speech on social media, Miria Obote the widow to the fallen former president of Uganda Apollo Milton Obote contested for presidency in 2006 and Jimmy Akena the son to Milton Obote is the president of the Uganda people’s congress.
Aspiring for the presidency should all be about someone’s credentials and Uganda as a democratic nation always organizes elections and at one time if General Muhoozi aspires to lead this country, he will pass through the same criteria.
Muhoozi is one of the best-trained army officers and has served in different command capacities and participated in battles inside and outside the country.
Whether this bill is presented or not Ugandans should know that there is no harm in reviewing the constitution through a participatory consultative process. The population is the one to decide through their Members of Parliament.
The opposition should stop looking for relevancy and focus on presenting policies that will bring better service delivery in the different sectors and institutions of government.