Mbabazi, Uganda Presidential Candidate, Doesn't Think Gen. Museveni Is Behind The Threats To Assassinate Him

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Former Uganda prime minister Mbabazi--blocked by Museveni regime from running for president

Mbabazi: 'I am the only one who has been prohibited to popularize my intended candidature'

Former Ugandan Prime minister, John Patrick Amama Mbabazi in an exclusive interview with The Black Star News's Okumu Langol Livingstone on 23 July 2015, gave reasons why there is dire need to constitutionally change the top leadership of Uganda, after 30 years of the tenure of office of president Yoweri Museveni.

BSN: What do you think of General Yoweri Museveni?

JPAM: First of all, I have repeated my position on the same issue several times, but for your sake let me say this. My current campaign is not targeting any individual or Mr. Museveni, but marketing myself for national leadership. So my vision for coming up to offer myself to be elected is not only to cause the change of leadership, but the change of the system the way the affairs of the nation is run in national interest.

President Museveni has been our leader a for long time both in war and in peace. Someone may ask 'if Museveni has been such a good leader, why are you seeking to replace him'?

My answer to that question would be that, it is not proper for a good leader to  die in power. In fact in my fair assessment, it is a good attribute of good leadership to retire when you are still popular. In our case Museveni has been in power for 30 years which is ample time for him to hand over power to interested leaders who have been groomed over this period.

BSN: Do you think there will be a free and fair election when Ugandan go [to the] polls next year?

JPAM: I hope there will be a free and fair election because unfair elections often have dire consequences which we should avoid. It is in the interest of all stakeholders in the affairs of Uganda, both in opposition political parties and civil society actors to work hard to ensure that we have free and fair elections. This can be achieved by, first having unity with all the democratic forces and building sufficient vigilance in organizational capacity to protect votes.

BSN: What is your view on the Electoral Reforms Ugandans are yearning for? 

JPAM: There is need for electoral reforms and electoral laws to enforce it. Although it is for necessary amendments to these laws, parliament should select the most critical reforms within the given timeframe for adoption.

The question of appointment of electoral Commissioners is a crucial. My view is that in the present electoral Commission there some good well intentioned commissioners but there are also those that are not be neutral.

BSN: Are you going to run as an NRM flag bearer or you will consider joining opposition parties on the democratic alliance?

JPAM: I will if need arises. I am committed to Democracy. I have done a great deal already and you can see how I am being treated. Now Museveni is on the campaign trail, as the other opposition leaders. I am the only one who has been prohibited to popularize my intended candidature. What kind of democracy is that?

BSN: Are you not fearful about your safety in this process?

JPAM: There are some reports I get of threats directed at me, but I don’t think those who are making the threats are doing so under the directive of president Museveni. I know that Museveni does not believe in the assassination of his political opponents, so those who may be developing such thoughts should restrain themselves; their schemes are futile. Even if they succeeded in eliminating me, the ideas I have will flourish. It is high time we practiced the politics of civilized communities.

Our Police Force is being misused to become attack dogs for political interest [of] individual contenders, which is wrong. The Uganda Police Force must be neutral in matters of politics unless they dream that Uganda will degenerate into a police state at some point.

BSN: If you succeed in your struggle for national leadership will your government have special consideration Northern region which feels marginalized?

JPAM: I am sensitive to the concerns of everybody who feels marginalized. The adverse effect of war on people must attract supplementary budgetary attention by the government. For those areas in the North and Luwero triangle which, have been devastated by war, definitely affirmative action will be taken to raise their social standing to acceptable levels.


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