Musevenocracy: A Peculiar, Coarse, Cruel, and Wicked form of “Democracy” in Uganda

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Worn man, worn ideas. Gen. Yoweri Museveni--his own brand of "democracy". Photo: Foreign and Commonwealth Office/Wikimedia.

[My Free Thoughts]

I think Uganda is not ready for western democracy copied and pasted in caricature--we need our own brand called Musevenocracy. It beats my understanding whenever dictator Museveni stands on his feet- in oversized shirts hanging on his careworn body like a scarecrow in a garden of beans, the brimmed hat hiding the old age and haggardness on his face- starts lecturing about democracy! 

The septuagenarian dictator in his known staccato belches that Uganda is a “democratic country” and that he doesn’t need lectures on the same. What a joke from the senile man in the hat. This is the dictator who moves across the country in a motorcade of a hundred armored vehicles, mobile toilet, bullet proof cage, bags of money dishing out to whoever comes to him kneeling and ready to move under his malodorous armpits. 

Whoever swears an oath of allegiance or subservience to him and promises to vouch continuously for his impunity walks away with a sack of money. This is the same person who incarcerates his opponents during presidential campaigns and releases them on the day of elections and again arrests them when vote counting begins—as he did with Dr. Kizza Besigye.

Just last week as many as 40 Ugandan civilians were mowed down by Museveni's security forces while protesting the arrest of presidential candidate Robert Kyagulanyi Sentamu—a.k.a. Bobi Wine.

So one wonders which type of “democracy” this knackered dictator talks about. This dictator whose age is not known—officially it’s claimed as 76; neither his origin is determined. He bribes Parliament, which has a majority of his ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM) party members, to create laws that keep him in power. Is it not ironic that a man who preaches “democracy” bribes his stay in power? 

When he saw that he had exhausted his terms in office, Museveni bribed members of Parliament and they amended the constitution to remove presidential term limits in 2005, and paved away for him to seek another term in office. When age caught up with him—our constitution prohibited anyone above age 75 from vying for presidency—he again bribed his Parliament and members amended the constitution and removed the age cap in December 2017, opening the way for him to be in the 2021 race. 

It’s despicable for someone to preach “democracy” while practicing demo-crazy. Museveni likes mocking what he calls “Western” democracy and calls for his own Ugandan brand of “democracy”—we must call it Musevenocracy. The inventor is Yoweri Kaguta Museveni Tibuhaburwa.  With Musevenocracy introduced in Uganda officially, the opposition parties will not complain when they are denied a voice. It will be fine for Patrick Amuriat, presidential candidate of the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) party, and Kyagulanyi, candidate of the National Unity Platform, to be arrested whenever they practice their constitutional right of having opposing views against impunity. 

With the Musevenocracy brand of democracy, no opposition member will be hosted on television and radio talk shows around the country. Only members of the NRM ruling party are allowed to move around the country freely and to speak on radios and carrying out regular campaigns. You know that a dictator has outlived his usefulness when he starts arresting whoever criticizes his madness, or whoever becomes popular and is on the opposing side. Yet, he is surrounded by thieves and murderers who have terrorized Uganda for decades. 

Whenever a Ugandan dies due to a shortage of medicine in the hospitals, we must blame the regime. Why should hospitals lack medicines because the thieves steal them and sell them in their private hospitals and clinics? When I and others in the fraternity of writers—Dr. Stella Nyanzi, Robert Shaka, and Joseph Kabuleta—critique such madness, we are arrested and imprisoned. 

In every democracy, people must have freedom of expression and assembly. It is a social contract where we hire leaders through an election and when they do otherwise, we must criticize them unsparingly. 

We must light fire on their butts whenever they do contrary to our legitimate expectations. It must be clear to any leader—no citizen anywhere in the world should pay taxes and watch the public coffers raided by a small clique of thieves posing as “rulers.” 

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