Uganda is a country with a long history of conflict. Our last civil war ended in 1986, with the rise to power of Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, who in his inauguration speech wrote: “… I want to emphasize that the first point in our political programme is democracy for the people of Uganda. It is a birthright to which all the people of Uganda are entitled. […] Therefore, the security of the people of Uganda is their right and not a favour bestowed by any regime. No regime has a right to kill any citizen of this country, or to beat any citizen at a road block.”
It has now been thirty-four  years since Mr. Museveni took office, a period during which the People of Uganda have struggled to find the freedom promised to us in 1986. The people of Uganda have been stripped of their rights, their peace and their power.
We are witnessing an escalation in the violence against Ugandans by the government — from the August 2018 murder of People Power mobilizer and driver Yasin Kawuma; to the kidnap and torture of Honourable Robert ‘Bobi Wine’ Kyagulanyi, Honourable Francis Zaake and over 30 others in the same period; to the regular abductions and detention incommunicado of citizens thought to be a threat to the regime; to the arrest and sentencing of Dr. Stella Nyanzi for cyber harassment and annoying the president; to the murder of innocent citizen Roland Ssebulime by state forces claiming an attempt on Minister Idah Nantaba’s life; to the assault by police forces on pregnant activist Nalongo Nana, which led to premature labour and the loss of her uterus; to the abduction, torture and murder of People Power mobilizer Ziggy Wyne; to the brutal assault and arrest of students protesting a 15% rise in fees, to the persistent brutalization of people who identify with the People Power movement.
The freedom to which Ugandans, Africans and all humanity are entitled, has in Uganda, been eroded over the past thirty-four years.
As we approach what will be a very hotly contested election, the junta is now dropping all pretenses at democracy and is openly attacking those who dare to stand against them.
On 24th February 2020, 28 year old People Power activist Ritah Nabukenya was run over by a Police Force vehicle. The driver knocked her off her motorbike and then ran her over a second time. They then refused to release her body from the morgue for hours as activists and loved ones tried to get her body home.
I write this letter at 6.30pm on Tuesday 25th February 2020; news has just broken that yet another Ugandan citizen by the name of Daniel has been killed by a shot to the face by Uganda Police.
Daniel was part of the crowd accompanying Honourable Kyagulanyi’s vehicle from Ritah Nabukenya’s funeral.
This violence is only going to escalate; the Museveni regime is a murderous, ruthless one.
Of great concern is the foundations the Museveni regime is now laying as what can only be interpreted as preemptive rationalizing of the increased violence they intend to unleash on the People Power movement and other opposition bodies. A few recent instances listed below:
– In a recent interview with the BBC, President Museveni called Hon. Kyagulanyi an ‘enemy of progress’, claiming without basis that Hon. Kyagulanyi has been undermining foreign investment in Uganda.
– Security Minister Gen. Elly Tumwine has stated that they are investigating links between a ‘hybrid terror group’ called the Red Movement and the People Power movement (whose colour is red).
– The Secretary General to Museveni’s party the National Resistance Movement (NRM) has stated in an interview that Hon. Kyagulanyi should be sued for allegedly ‘peddling lies against government’.
It is in the spirit of Pan Africanism and in the belief that a united Africa is a strong Africa that we call on Ghanaian President H.E Nana Akufo-Addo and the People of Ghana to stand with their sister Uganda as we call for the following:
– An immediate end to the human rights abuses being perpetrated against the People of Uganda.
– The release of all political prisoners currently being detained in prisons or being held incommunicado for opposing the Museveni regime.
– The immediate closure of all safe houses [where citizens are held without charge and often tortured] around Uganda.
– The cessation of all actions intended to intimidate or crush any individuals or bodies exercising their inalienable right to determine the future of Uganda.
– For the leaders of all member states under the African Union to honour the aspirations listed in Agenda 2063, making it clear to Yoweri Kaguta Museveni that his crimes are unacceptable and that he must step down on grounds of abuse of office, bringing the office of the President into hatred, ridicule, contempt or disrepute and incapacity as outlined under Article 107 of the Ugandan constitution; that he must no longer obstruct efforts by the People of Uganda to begin the long process of restoring our nation to democracy.
Towards a Liberated Africa.
By: Namata Serumaga-Musisi|Namata Serumaga-Musisi
People Power Diaspora Coordinator – Ghana