By Bob Atwiine
Kampala: In 1986, President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni together with a group of like-minded patriotic comrades rescued Uganda from the tyranny of the past bad leadership. Since then he has embraced the audacious hope of promoting a more-inclusive, secure, industrialized and a prosperous Uganda.
Uganda’s history was not good because of the turmoil and political upheavals the country witnessed until the onset of President Museveni and all the heroes he was with in the jungles of Luwero to liberate the motherland.
The young Museveni inherited a country whose state had disintegrated and economy collapsed. The country had been plagued by political instability manifested in military coups and civil wars of the time.
In the seven years between the overthrow of Idi Amin in April 1979 and Museveni’s take over in January 1986, Uganda had seven presidents, an average of one president per year. Uganda was so ungovernable and the first Prime Minister of Singapore Lee Kuan Yew of Singapore in his speech of April 14th 1988 noted that “Uganda’s world had collapsed and could not be rebuilt even in 100 years”.
The coming of President Museveni was in fact a moment of great hope for the suffering Ugandans because blood had been shed, lives lost, educations sacrificed, careers abandoned, families left behind, and properties destroyed; all in the hope of building a free, democratic and prosperous country. This mood of optimism was reflected in Museveni’s promise that his government takeover was “not a mere change of guard but a fundamental change in the politics of our country.”
Even none Ugandans had been concerned about the country’s plight because of the long period of political turmoil. Surprisingly the country has managed to defy that negative defined path. It’s a huge achievement for the leader to turn around the situation of the negativity to what we are in now.
One of his credits is stabilizing the political dispensation. This is reflected in three critical areas where Uganda’s state fragility was most reflected incessant military coups and civil wars. To achieve this, the President has been able put in place control measures over the security apparatus and disciplined the army making it pro-people force and accountable to civilian rule.
Those who have tried to go astray have been caught up with the long arm of the law. Right now; you cannot anticipate better peace and security than what Uganda is enjoying under Museveni’s able leadership. The president has also been able to initiate economic growth and to sustain it over years. Uganda’s economy has grown at an annual average rate of nearly 7% during his presidency, making it among the best performing economies in the world. GDP has expanded from under US$4 billion to US$34 billion today. That is a performance few nations across time and space have registered over such a long period.
It is evident everywhere that when there is peace and stability, the citizens develop themselves. People cannot develop economically and socially in a turbulent situation as it is in Yemen, Somalia or Central African Republic. In Kampala for example, people have built schools, universities, hotels, hospitals, industries, shopping malls, filling stations, worshipping houses, beautiful mansions, etc, this has been done because of the prevailing peace and political stability in the country spearheaded by president Museveni.
The president has also done well in the areas of industrialization. Having our own industries has helped a great deal. Today a lot of industries like those in Namunkekera in Nakaseke district, Namanve industrial parks, Mbale Industrial parks, Mukono, Tororo, Mbarara among others where several products are manufactured locally while thousands of Ugandans both skilled, semi and unskilled get jobs. Initially, Uganda was merely a market for Kenyan goods but under Museveni’s wise leadership, the situation changed for a great deal. With these very many industries, this is a big step towards boosting local production in efforts towards imports substitution trough Buy-Uganda-Build-Uganda (BUBU) initiative to boost local production and consumption of domestically-manufactured products.
This is the entire legacy that is largely owed to President Museveni from the time he started with FRONASA and then the time he transformed to National Resistance Army (NRA) and finally to National Resistance Movement (NRM) which has transformed this nation to this far it has gone.
However, with this entire legacy, the enemies and detractors are hell bent on destroying everything he has achieved because they see him more to the nation than an individual. Some of those who joined him in the struggle to liberate Uganda should now be deeply concerned on how to protect this legacy. This is because many of these forces are planning to destroy even those who were part of the struggle which is very unfortunate. The legacy of President Museveni is a rich history that should not be squandered as a community or generation and those who are fighting this legacy should be strongly resisted by everyone who wishes to see a more prosperous and peaceful Uganda.
President Museveni should also be commended for performing very excellent in health sector ensuring that Ugandans are safe and protected from disease outbreak. For example, the Lancet a weekly peer-reviewed general medical journal which is also one of the world’s oldest and best-known general medical journals this month ranked Uganda among top 10 countries in the world in terms of suppressing the spread of COVID-19 as of August 2020.
The Commission said a country was able to curb the spread of the virus in August if it only had five or fewer cases per million populations a day, provided that it conducted “at least 20 tests per new case,” which is considered “ample” testing.
Yes, it might be still too early to jubilate but soon the world will wake up to realize that President Museveni was a great leader when it comes to managing this crisis of the pandemic. The country is not yet victorious but as yet but the president has made his mark.
All this is not only the Museveni legacy but also a legacy of the revolution, the movement and for the country Uganda. Those trying to destroy what has so far been achieved should think twice.
Bob Atwiine is a concerned citizen and a young NRM turk.
He can reached on +256753773775 and +256787778047