Main Menu

WHY MUSEVENI’S RETIRED SOLDIERS NO LONGER JOIN THE OPPOSITION (photos)

Want create site? Find Free WordPress Themes and plugins.
All images may be subject to copyright

All images may be subject to copyright

All images may be subject to copyright

All images may be subject to copyright

All images may be subject to copyright

All images may be subject to copyright

CHANGE OF GUARDS – When Museveni took power in 1986 he banned political parties. Instead, he imposed his one party political dispensation dubbed Movement (NRM) on every Ugandan. His army, the NRA, continued with its role of being the armed wing of the NRM. During that period, the army officers that would fall out of favor with Museveni would simply be arbitrarily dismissed with disgrace and would end up in oblivion. The likes of Brig. Tadeo Kanyankole, Col. Julius Chihandae and a few others were the earliest victims. Col. Kashilingi fled to Congo, then Brig. Moses Ali, Col. Matovu, Col. Oliver Odweyo, Col Kawuma and a few others were incarcerated over alleged treason.  A couple of Baganda senior army officers like Col. Drago Nyanzi, Maj. Kigundu and others were turned into jail birds before they rallied before Gen. Saleh to plead their plight to Museveni. Maj. Herbert Igongwa deserted and founded the short lived NDA rebel group. The Bahima senior army officers like Ikondere, Sikaji, the Kyatuka brothers, Muheesi, Tabaan and others who rallied around Gen. Ssejusa were grounded (Katebe) before Gen. Kaziini came in to neutralize their influence.

Up to around 2000, formal retirement from the army was non existent. Gen. Ssejusa had attempted to retire from the army in the mid 1990s but Museveni vehemently opposed it. It was Dr. (Col) Besigye who pioneered the formal retirement from the NRA in October 2000.  Even so, his retirement was a narrow escape from the ‘frying pan to the fire’.

In November 1999,  Dr. Kizza Besigye authored a hard-hitting dossier titled, “An Insider’s view of how NRM lost the broad-base” for which he was to be court-martialed until he “regretted” the controversy it created in a letter to President Yoweri Museveni. A strong delegation of his home people under the Rukungiri Development Committee had met and pleaded with Museveni not to court martial Dr. Besigye and to allow him to retire from the army.

Before Dr. Besigye was retired, he made another strong statement at the burial of the former DP Secretary General, Anthony Ssekweyama on October 3, 2000. The army threatened to investigate those remarks he had made thus making him a potential subject of court martial. Again, the Rukungiri Development Committee formed the National Task Force Besigye Rescue Group which issued a strong statement:
        “We now know that Besigye may be arrested anytime…and if anything like that happens, we are planning bigger action,” said Kwijuka who was also mobilisation secretary of Rukungiri Development Committee in 2000.

The media widely covered the  ultimatum thus;
“Besigye group now plans bigger action”…. The Daily Monitor, October 20, 2000. 

The statements enraged Museveni who ordered security agencies to decisively deal with people threatening violence in the name of defending Besigye.

In a memo to the then minister of State for Defence, Steven Kavuma, Museveni wrote:
     ” I continue to see newspaper reports quoting some civilians that are supposed to be defending Col. Besigye….working with the appropriate organs of the state, warn the leaders of those groups that they will come to grief if they are to disrupt public order in the defence of Besigye.”

Unknown to Museveni, the army had on the same date issued Dr. Besigye with a Discharge Certificate.  Those responsible for Dr. Kizza’s hasty discharge like then, Col. Kashaka who was the Chief of Personnel and Administration (CPA) and the then army chief, Gen. Jeje Odong were later to pay the heavy price for their actions. Dr. Besigye immediately declared his intention to contest for the presidency in a press release issued on Saturday, October 28, 2000. During the campaigns for the 2001 elections, Dr. Besigye claimed to have 90% of the army’s support. Museveni responded by threatening to send him ‘six feet under.’  Indeed, the events that followed have seen and continue to see Dr. Besigye six feet under.

Dr. Besigye’s initial presidential bid created uneasiness within the army. Officers whose loyalty was doubtable were sidelined while others were put on a watchlist. Capt. Makoko who would openly show support for Dr. Besigye was gunned down at his residence in Nateete. Then Capt. Shaban Bantariza, Capt. Nuwagaba Kashure and and a couple of other officers fell victim. Maj. Okwir Rabwoni (brother of Brig. Mayombo) who openly rallied behind Dr. Besigye was hurdled into exile.  Dr. Besigye fled to exile followed by senior officers like Col. Mande, Col. Kyakabale, Col. Muzoora, Maj. Muhindo, Capt. Kabali, Lt. Bakarweha and others followed suit.

In exile, they were alleged to have formed the rebel PRA which attracted a number of both serving and retired army personnel. Capt. Babu Mugira, Capt. Katabazi, Capt. Amon Byarugaba, Capt. Okalebo, Capt. Michael Opio, Lt. Asiimwe, Lt. Kyarisima Matsiko, Lt. Kashilingi, Sgt. Mate, WOII Atunga, Sgt. Agume.

Mindful of the target avenues that Museveni’s own NRA had used during his Bush War, Museveni put in place the notorious Operation Wembley to target army Veterans, some personnel in active service and suspected civilian robbers who were the potential recruits for the so-called PRA armed rebellion.  That is how the likes of Capt. Kabusene and others ended up being incarcerated to death. 

In the same regard, Museveni put in place the notorious Joint Anti Terrorism Task Force (JATTF).  A parallel General Court Martial under Gen. Tumwine was also set up not to try the JATTF and Operation Wembley suspects and yet to simply legalize their detention without trial. That is why no single suspect of the above two ragtag outfits was ever taken through a full trial. Instead, after years of incarceration they would simply be set free while others were coerced into applying for Amnesty.

When the army allowed the retirement of the likes of Gen. Muntu, Col. Mushega, Maj. Kazoora, Maj. Rubaramira, Lt. Mugarura and others, they all joined the Opposition led by Dr. Besigye.  Consequently, retirement from the NRA was informally suspended for many years. However, during the suspension period, a few officers whose so-called political clarity was not in doubt; Col. Dick Bigingo, Col. Bright Rwamirama, Col. Fred Mwesigye, Gen. Fred Oketcho and a few others were allowed to retire.

When Gen. Tumukunde showed signs of political dissent, he was incarcerated and later grounded for The next eight years. The officers who had fled into exile like Col. Kyakabale, Maj. Rabwoni, Capt. Kabali, Lt. Bakarweha and a few others were lured back from Europe. From exile, Col. Muzoora’s body was mysteriously found dumped at his country home in Bushenyi.

For those army officers whose services Museveni does not desire in the army but at the same time fears to retire them, Museveni devised a means of keeping them in captivity by seconding them to civilian institutions like Agriculture, Fisheries,  Public Works, Fisheries, etc. It is only recently that the country is witnessing formal retirement of military personnel in sizeable numbers. Even then, the selection criteria and qualification for retirement is a mystery.  It is just a few lucky ones whose political clarity has been thoroughly scrutinized that are allowed to retire.

Before the final retirement, those selected are taken through a rigorous Retirement Seminar where they are politically brainwashed and threatened with dire consequence should they dare associate with the opposition politics. The major weapon is that they are told that they are simply being transferred to the Reserve Force where they remain subjects of military law thus potential for court martialing.

Another weapon that Museveni has devised is ensuring strict recruitment of his NRM regime sympathisers through rigorous vetting by his communist spy network of LCs, GISOs and RDCs. He has also set up a special slot for the children of loyal past and present army officers and politicians.  That way, in the near future the country will witness exclusive hereditary military families. However, when the likes of the then Vice President Bukenya dared to send his son for Officer Cadet training, he suffered an irrecoverable shock of his life. The opportunist Maj. Juma Seiko recently suffered the same fate during the army recruitment in his home area. His two sons had appeared with documents purportedly from the army headquarters indicating that they should be recruited to join the army but were rejected.  He was heard lamenting;
        “I joined the forces way back in 1985 and we brought this government into power and I now wanted my children to pick up from where I stopped by joining the army and now they have been denied the opportunity,” Seiko said.

Unless the trend is reversed, very soon being an NRM regime party card holder will be the basic qualification for joining the forces.

Much as it looks like Museveni has effectively taken control of the army’s loyalty, incidents of plotting to overthrow him by sections of the military keep emerging. 

In March 2013, some soldiers plotted to attack Mbuya barracks to acquire arms. Lt. Moro and Private Odingkara were captured while another was killed in Acton.

In December 2013, the then MP for Bubulo, Hon. Tonny Nsubuga Kipoi, Sgt. Yunus Lemeriga, Cpl. Rogers Mweru, Sgt Adams Mawa, Sgt Albino Okeng and Pte Dodola Ijosiga, all soldiers attached to the armoured brigade were accused of plotting to overthrow the government.

In Early 2014, a couple of  soldiers from Museveni’s SFG were arrested over treasonous allegations linked to then exiled controversial Gen ssejusa. They were later convicted as charged.

In May 2014, Lt Col Philip Frank Eguma, Lt. Aleper,  Lt Ronald Waibi Mwavu, Pte Kenneth Sekajja, Rtd Capt John Bosco Rutwama, Ali Mukiibi (retired air force pilot) and others were arrested over an alleged plot to attack Kabamba barracks to acquire arms for overthrowing the government.

In June 2016, a number of army officers including a Colonel from the Airforce were arrested together with Hon. Kabaziguruka on treasonous allegations. The others were Captain Andrew Ojaa, Retired Private, Frederick Namara, Private Christopher Omony, and Assistant Inspector of Police, Ferdinand Obulejo.

In November 2016,  Lt. Col Deziderio Balidda 57, WOII Robert Wanyama, 39, and Pte. Ivan Asiimwe, 28, all attached to field Artillery division of the army were charged with treason for plotting to overthrow the government.

In June 2018, Museveni arrested his police chief, Gen. Kalekyezi and a couple of Kayihura’s top lieutenants in the police over allegations that they had been backed by Rwanda in plotting to overthrow the government.

In March 2019, Sgt. Evert Arinaitwe the laboratory technician at the general military hospital Bombo was arrested over links to a plot to overthrow the government.

There are many other similar plots that go unreported.

In an interview with The Observer in 2008, Dr. Besigye insisted that his following in the army had grown over the last couple of years to over 90% and that there was nothing illegitimate about claiming support of the army. During the last election campaigns, Dr. Besigye asserted that the army and police would abandon Museveni once the population asserts its authority. It is either by coincidence or by design that all the retired army officers who become politically active rally behind Dr. Besigye and the FDC. 

Therefore, much as the retired army personnel no longer openly join and support the opposition parties due to fear of persecution, there is an underground disaffection as demonstrated by repeated incidents of treasonous acts.

INFORMATION IS POWER AND THE PROBLEM OF UGANDA IS MUSEVENISM

—— AUTO – GENERATED; Published (Halifax Canada Time AST) on: January 28, 2020 at 06:29PM

Did you find apk for android? You can find new Free Android Games and apps.
Sharing is caring: