Open Political Space And End Corruption -- U.K. Lawmaker To Museveni In Address to London Protesters

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MP Williams addresses Ugandan Diaspora and U.K. media at London protest today. 

Increasing pressure on the Ugandan dictatorship, a British Member of Parliament today called on the government of Gen. Yoweri Museveni to open up political space for dialogue, end corruption, and to stop suppressing freedom of the press.
 
The lawmaker, Dr. Paul Williams, addressed Ugandans protesting outside Parliament in London.
 
The Museveni regime last year reportedly received about £100 million from the British government, which is about $140 million. The U.S. also sends more than $1 billion in financial and military support to Uganda. Museveni has been in power for 32 years now since he marched into Kampala by force of arms in 1986. 
 
In 2012 U.K. aid was cut after widespread reports of corruption by the Museveni regime. U.K. media also reported that Gen. Museveni used forreign aid money to purchase a $50 million Gulf Stream jet for his personal use. 
 
When he seized power, Museveni had promised to restore accountable governance and democratic rule to Uganda in addition to elevating the country to Middle Income status. Today, Uganda lags far behind both Kenya and Tanzania in economic development. Politically, it has retrogressed; both Kenya and Tanzania, which together with Uganda are the original East African Community members, have presidential term limits in their constitution. In Uganda, Museveni shredded the constitution when he forced Parliament to remove term limits in 2005 and last year to remove the 75 years age ceiling. He will officially be 76 by the next election in 2021 although it is believe he could be as old as 80 by then. 
 
In Uganda the dictator is derisively referred to as "president broken promises" on account of his long-list of false pronouncements over the last 32 years. Gen. Museveni is currently in London attending together with other leaders the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) which brings together the U.K. and former British colonies and associated members. 
 
Dr. Williams, who spoke to Diaspora Ugandans this afternoon at Parliament Square said he was "fully committed" to working with Ugandans and friends of Uganda to ensure that "meaningful democracy" is restored to the country. Dr. Williams recalled with fondness his work, for over five years, as a physician attending to the rural communities in Uganda. He said he would work with Ugandans to ensure that issues of political oppression, human rights violations, and the continuous muzzling of the media, are addressed. 
 
MP Williams highlighted the United Kingdom's concern over lack of political space in Uganda and called on the Museveni government to open dialogue to ensure that all Ugandans are included as well as prioritized in the country's development agenda.
 
Last week on April 19, Dr. Williams' comments set of a firestorm in Uganda when, addressing Prime Minister Teresa May's government officials on the floors of the U.K. Parliament, he said: "Will the government use CHOGM to give a message to Uganda's President Museveni that after 32 years in power he's become a barrier to his country's development and that good governance includes leaving office?"
 
Those were perhaps the most potent 34 words ever uttered publicly in a sentence, addressing the Museveni regime, by a British lawmaker on the floors of Parliament. 
 
The regime responded with invective from Museveni's spokesperson; but most Ugandans welcomed the comments as evidenced by reactions on social media platforms. 
 
London reporting provided by Dr. Vincent Magombe, Secretary Free Uganda Leadership Committee and Press Secretary FU.
 
 

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