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{UAH} Mr President, this is not the Uganda I would wish my grandchildren to live in.

By Prof George W. Kanyeihamba

Mr President, this is not the Uganda I would wish my grandchildren to live in.

Imagine a country where the President declares publicly that his ministers are corrupt and the engine of the economy, the ministry of Finance, is managed by thieves. The President is reported to have also confirmed that there is rampant corruption and mafia in the police.
The Chief Justice, head of the Judiciary – the temple of justice – has publicly acknowledged that judges and magistrates are corrupt or incompetent, but sadly he has no powers to discipline them. In response, the Inspector General of Government (IGG) says she will no longer pursue "small fish" and wants to prosecute only the "big fish".

Then the Speaker of Parliament not only declares decisions of some judges stupid, but from time to time warns Members of Parliament for their unlawful acts and behaviour. Then a Cabinet minister is allegedly caught red-handed receiving solicited bribes. Mr President, would you wish to live in such a country or your grandchildren to grow in it?
Since the NRM came to power, there have been numerous commissions of inquiry and internal departmental probes appointed by the government to investigate corruption, abuse of office and mischievous behaviour in public institutions and bodies.
Resulting reports have been published and physically delivered to the disciplining authorities including the President, Speaker of Parliament, Chief Justice, Judicial Service Commission, IGG and the Inspector General of Police.

These reports have been widely published. Surprisingly, the authorities directly concerned with cleaning the system and disciplining, removing and punishing the culprits have either been toothless, apologetic or protective of those accused of these serious crimes.
Some of the workers in the government institutions who publicly make solemn promises to act correctly and refrain from acting criminally or refrain from violating the rule of law and the Constitution change their minds thereafter and benefit from the betrayal of their oaths and pledges.

Not beyond 75
In a May 2012 interview with NTV's Patrick Kamara, President Museveni said he would not lead Uganda beyond the age of 75 years. Museveni gave scientific reasons for his decision which many experts may not agree with.
The country is waiting in anticipation to discover whether the President will abide by his decision. Unfortunately, Mr President, many Ugandans believe rightly or wrongly, that our President will not recall or adhere to his own decision.

Several years ago, it was reported that Museveni defended the widely-criticised use of his presidential plane to fly his daughter and daughter-in-law to Germany to give birth because he does not trust Uganda doctors.
Recently, the nation was shocked by the assassination of AIGP Andrew Felix Kaweesi, his bodyguard and driver. As if this was not enough, the facts and evidence so far disclosed show that some security officers were implicated in the assassination. According to the minister of Security, the assassination was a professional job.

This brings us to the bizarre behaviour and detention of Dr Stella Nyanzi. Some time ago, she stripped naked at the Makerere Institute of Social Research apparently because she had been locked out of her office.
At that time, she uttered and published sexual obscenities, indicating to many Ugandans that perhaps she needed medical help rather than punishment.
Recently, she published the similar obscenities against certain government leaders on the basis that they had failed to honour their political pledges to the nation when they were soliciting for votes to be elected.

Many Ugandans believe that she should not be arrested, detained or charged with questionable criminal offences. They believe that her alleged indiscretions are less grave than those of those the President brands corrupt and thieves or those the IGG has decided should be exempt from criminal responsibility of bribery and theft.
It may not be easy to live outside Uganda just as it is difficult to obtain justice, medical treatment and social service in it, but the adage "please, stop the world. I want to get off" has a credible ring about it.

Prof Kanyeihamba is a retired Supreme Court judge.


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