UGANDA’S STRUGGLE FOR DEMOCRACY
As Ugandans, we inherited a fragmented system, founded on the principles of divide and rule. Our political parties are either based on religion, culture, or ethnicities. Despite the diverse cultural background, and political fragmentations, Ugandans have stayed true to their cultures and continue to live in the spirit of brotherhood.
Unity overthrew the British Empire
Ugandans united in the past when they came together and threw out the British empire in 1962, they did not do it as Baganda, Basoga, Langi, Acholi, Madi, NO, they did it as one collective People, as Ugandans. In Unity there’s Strength, so if Ugandans could throw out the British Empire, it’s obvious that they can get rid of dictator general Yoweri Museveni who’s ruined the country for the last 34 years, so Ugandans come together, throw general Museveni out by the ballot box or if necessary, the constitution does allows other measures, in fact the constitution obligates Ugandans to get rid of tyranny.
Benedicto Kiwanuka, leader of the Democratic Party, became Uganda’s first prime minister during the transition period between March 1 and October 9, 1962.
Milton Obote became the first prime minister after independence and the Kabaka of Buganda, Edward Mutesa II, became the first president. After a political falling out between these two leaders, Obote used army commander Col. Idi Amin to oust Mutesa who fled the country and died in exile. Obote resorted to dictatorial rule and later arrested Kiwanuka in 1969.
Idi Amin, who seized power in 1971, appointed Kiwanuka Chief Justice in 1971, but then arrested and brutally murdered him in 1972.
Nationalist leader Archbishop Janani Luwuum, was archbishop of Church of Uganda from 1974 to 1977 and a leader of the modern church in Africa. He was arrested in February 1977 after he denounced Amin’s tyranny and brutally murdered by Amin who later fabricated a car accident in a crude attempt to cover up the crime.
During the struggle for independence, nationalist leader Otema Allimadi helped smuggle Ugandans out of the country during the 1950s to study abroad. He was arrested numerous times by the British colonial regime. After independence, he served as Uganda’s ambassador to the United States and the United Nations, and also served as foreign minister and prime minister. He died in Uganda in 2001.
Nationalist leader Boniface Byanyima, was a teacher and leader of Uganda’s Democratic Party and Member of Parliament during the 1960s and 70s. He was a major force in Uganda’s politics and a relentless critic of its successive undemocratic leaders. He died aged 96 in 2017.
Unfortunately, the dreams that independence would bring liberty, democracy, and economic development soon faded.
In 1971 the chickens came home to roost. Amin, whom Obote had used to depose Mutesa, overthrew Obote. Uganda went from autocracy to murderous regime under Amin.
Here are some dictators who have fallen:
Mobutu Sese Seko of Zaire
He deposed democratically elected Prime Minister Patrice Lumumba in 1960, and then seized power in 1965. He was overthrown in 1997.
Hosni Mubarak of Egypt
In power from 1981 until he was driven out by the Arab Spring uprising in 2011.
Blaise Compaore of Burkina Faso
Seized power after he assassinated the popular leader Thomas Sankara. He was driven out of power in 2014 by a youth uprising.
Yahya Jammeh of Gambia
Seized power in 1994. Driven out by popular protests in 2017.
Omar Hassan Bashir of Sudan
After 30 years as dictator, in 2019, youth protests, with women in the forefront, drove him from power.
Much work needs to be done before the people of these countries can build enduring democratic institutions.
This film is Dedicated to Barbara Allimadi
Barbara Allimadi was a Pan-Africanist and Ugandan nationalist. She was the daughter of Otema Allimadi. She was spurred into political activism after she witnessed a Television news broadcast of the brutal public humiliation of IngridTurinawe, a prominent leader in the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC).
Turinawe was violently grabbed and pulled by her breast by Museveni's police while seated inside her car. Barbara led a protest outside police headquarters with other young women. They opened their shirts and exposed their bras to highlight the violation of womanhood by Museveni's police and demanded the resignation of the notorious police commander Gen. Kale Kayihura. Barbara’s protest inspired other women activists, including Stella Nyanzi, who became a close friend. She and others were arrested.
Barbara later became the International Diaspora spokesperson for the Alliance for National Transformation (ANT) party under retired general Mugisha Muntu. The freedom struggle in Uganda suffered a severe blow when Barbara died suddenly under mysterious circumstances in April 2020.
Barbara was destined for leadership in Uganda.
What people say
Words from Kyagulanyi Robert Ssentamu about the Documentary by Patricia Namyalo. Another sentence about the Documentary.
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