Throughout August, the National Unity Platform headquarters in Kamwokya had become a beehive of activities. The revolutionary red base has undisputedly become a political Mecca of sorts with politicians grappling to associate or be seen to associate with the NUP party flag, writes PATRICIA SSEWUNGU
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Earlier in July, a delegation from the European union paid a courtesy call on the NUP Party President perhaps to have a ground check on what constituted the NUP ambition surrounding the youthful Kyadondo East legislator, Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu. For an average Joe, the visit comes off as an endorsement by the west on Hon.Kyagulanyi’s presidential aspirations. Some politicians ignorantly have labeled him being a ‘Western puppet’ and that he is being used by the whites to advance their sinister agenda. However, this is not the first time a European Union delegation is visiting an opposition leader. In 2016, at the height of the election season, a delegation from the European union visited Dr.Besigye at his home in Kasangati where he had been confined by the state under the then famous “preventive arrest” provision of the police act. There was excitement among his supporters who thought the white man had come back this time as a liberator and not a conquerer.
I don’t read too much into these gymnastics after all these fellows do not vote so the impact of their visit in the final has always been picked wrongly. However looking at it with other lenses, you can not help but admire the story of Hon.Robert Kyagulanyi.
Just a few years ago, he was looked at as a drug addict and he was not an option for any parent looking for a role model for their children. To see that he is now in contention for the biggest office in the land and he is rubbing shoulders with everyone that is anyone in the world, deserves applause- He simply looks the CHOSEN ONE to a nation that’s crying out for a Messiah.
And more still at the Kamwokya based Headquarters, a group of Demoractic Party members under their pressure group christened the “DP BLOCK” officially crossed to NUP. It should be noted that these members have for a long time been at loggerheads with the DP president Norbert Mao and have always accused him of throwing the party down the drain through his rumoured un ending attachment to the ruling NRM Party. This exodus spells doom for DP as historical as it is the party looms large with failure. And it’s a sigh of relief to many in the Opposition to do away with Norbert Mao. He claims the antagonists are gone but this remains to be seen because in the recently concluded Youth elections, DP performed worst with just a meagre 1%. In his usual arrogant words of Norbert Mao, “yabikwasizza Kyagulanyi” and feels the heat more than before. This crossing of members from one opposition party to another opposition party is in the best interests productive to the efforts of unseating the self appointed grandfather of the nation, Gen. Yoweri Museveni and the vigour is high.
Some claim it’s like changing money from one pocket to another of the same trouser but this appears to be the only solution in beating the Leopard to his game. Who knows NUP and other opposition parties soon will attract members from NRM as the seeds of their struggle are sown the harvest will loom large.In this way NUP is doing its best to influence the Parliament. To build a critical mass in Parliament Kyagulanyi is doing his best to put questions in the minds of the opposition that it needs at least 180 MPs just to block any government project that they don’t agree with.
However, with the creation of new constituencies in a classic case of gerimandering, this task almost seems insamountable because the tricks of the Old man are again out in influencing Parliament.This does not mean the opposition should resign to fate because they still have the best chance in changing ideologies and this can only be achieved if they stop engaging in petty fights with one another and pull all their resources towards fighting the common “enemy”.
And so even as we fight for freedom and liberation today, in a moment when we are far more divided in the opposition than in the KY/UPC day, when we are once again debating the critical issues of our time in this struggle and debating them sometimes fiercely — let us remember that we are doing so as servants of the same flag to stop this NRM dictatorship, as representatives of the same suffering people, and as stakeholders in a common future of Uganda.That is the most fitting tribute we can pay to our fore fathers and the most lasting monument we can build for the future of our Children.