How the US made Museveni pay heavily for his mistakes

President Museveni at the recently concluded US-Africa summit in Washington DC
President Museveni at the recently concluded US-Africa summit in Washington DC

By Eric Kashambuzi

When Museveni became president of Uganda in 1986 riding on the crest of a guerrilla victory, he was showered with praise as an intellectual that had picked up the gun to save Uganda and her people. He soon became the blue-eyed boy and darling of the West, especially of the United States of America.

He was showered with money and invitation to attend the annual G8 Summits of industrialized countries for boldly launching “shock therapy” stabilization and a structural adjustment programme (SAP) that was shunned or amended by governments including Chile, Ghana and Tanzania. Against this backdrop, Museveni began to speak and write with confidence without realizing that a spoken or written word never dies; to make and break promises without worrying about the repercussions and to behave as though he had won permanent glory no matter what he subsequently committed or omitted.

Sadly, while recently attending the historic U.S. – Africa Leaders’ Summit, Museveni got a rude shock of his life. He was marginalized and even attacked for his reckless remarks and broken promises that did not sit down well with many people in the United States. People who had followed Museveni develop a special relationship with the United States of America especially the anti-terrorism collaboration, expected a warm welcome notwithstanding signing the anti-gay bill.  Museveni’s actions had gone against American values in some respects.

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