To my President HE YK Museveni,
For three months now, I have been analyzing views of many people in Uganda on mainly two issues;
1. Their Land
2. Their Constitution
1. Their Land – it may finally be done at parliament as before but your Excellency, the people of Uganda do not trust you on this amendment. Majority believe it’s a ploy to take away the only thing left under their control. They also believe that there is a lot at stake due to high levels of public servant fuelled corruption that no one is willing to put their resources at the disposal of a shamelessly corrupt elites. After all, majority of ordinary people do not have that much land left for them to sabotage government projects save for the vast communal land in northern Uganda. The corrupt public service officials and the fraudulent political class are the ones with vast land today. Over 20 years ago, majority of big land owners today did not have vast land and most public land was encroached on at the watch of government. Understand if people fail to put trust in you on this land issue overnight.
2. Their Constitution – to celebrate those who lost their lives in NRA war, the 1995 constitution was enacted to restore people power. Many Ugandans especially of my age believe that you should allow this constitution to work. Majority of the war children cast their first vote for you in 1996 with great joy along with many NRA supporters and they all deeply trusted that you would protect the integrity and fidelity of this precious document. Majority Ugandans feel that the constitution has been likened to a personal biography that can be amended anytime as the author wishes. People want the integrity and fidelity of the people’s 1995 constitution and the popular 2005 amendment that restored political pluralism to be preserved and freed of individual interests. The precedent being set is that the 1996 constitution is yours and NRM supporters now. They view majority of the proposed amendments especially those in the past as being not in the best interest of Ugandans.
Overall, none of the proponents of the land amendment bill and those in favour of scrapping the age limit are doing so with all sincerity. They are not children of the war and NRM era, they are the beneficiaries of all that has gone wrong and are dangerous to the country that you fought to liberate as a youth.
For God and My Country
Dr Muhwezi is the spokesperson of the Makerere University Academic Staff Association (Muasa)