Dr. Besigye assures Non-Violence in Ousting President Museveni from Power !
In a thought-provoking address at the Dr. Paul Kawanga Ssemogerere Legacy Conference held at Hotel Africana in Kampala, Dr. Kiizza Besigye, a four-time former Presidential candidate and key figure in Ugandan politics, called for a departure from the use of violence to remove President Museveni and his National Resistance Movement (NRM) party from power.
Besigye, who was himself a part of the rebellion that brought Museveni to power in 1986, emphasized the futility of using armed means to challenge the current regime.
Besigye, a former fighter in the NRA rebellion, highlighted the dangers of using violence to gain power. Drawing on Museveni's own history of using armed rebellion to take control in 1986, Besigye remarked, "Because those who are victorious by the gun become the new problem." He regretted the violent methods that were pursued in the past, acknowledging that while it was a form of engagement, it ultimately led to more challenges.
The legacy conference, attended by figures such as Dr. Ssemogerere's widow, Jemima Namatovu, his son Kaloli Ssemogerere, and the Archbishop of Kampala Archdiocese, Paul Ssemogerere, focused on Dr. Paul Kawanga Ssemogerere's belief in unity. Dr. Ssemogerere was known for advocating for unity among different political parties, even including the ruling NRM, to jointly govern the country. He actively pursued this vision through legal and constitutional means, attempting to form coalitions and encourage collaboration among political elites.
Besigye echoed this call for unity, emphasizing that even the opposition's unity behind a single candidate wouldn't be enough to defeat Museveni through the ballot. He asserted that "violent hold on power, using the means prescribed by those violent" would be counterproductive. Besigye stressed that common goals should transcend individual interests for the betterment of the nation.
Muwanga Kivumbi, a representative of the National Unity Platform in Parliament, acknowledged the challenge of political elites obstructing unity. He recognized that unity was crucial for confronting contemporary challenges and argued that even President Museveni needed such unity to effectively manage the economy and governance.
The conference paid tribute to Dr. Paul Ssemogerere, who passed away in November 2022 at the age of 90. Speakers commended his role in mentoring the younger generation in politics and his dedication to pursuing unity through legal and constitutional avenues.
As Uganda navigates its political landscape, the legacy of Dr. Ssemogerere's emphasis on unity and non-violent means of change seems to have found resonance among some of the country's influential political figures. However, the practical application of these ideals remains a subject of ongoing debate and discussion.
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