By Henry D Gombya and agency reports
Reports reaching our news desk from the Tanzanian capital Dar es Salaam say Tanzanian troops have been placed on high alert to be deployed to Goma at a moment’s notice to engage the M23 rebels who captured the city last weekend. The alert message to the Tanzania Peoples Defence Forces (TPDF) is a jolt in the ribs of what has been a dozing military giant famed for having evicted a man who, even after his death, remains Uganda’s most hated and feared dictator, President For Life Field Marshall Dr Idi Amin Dada, VC, DSO, MC, CBE.
In 1978, the TPDF led Ugandan exiles all the way from Mtukula, a small town in Misenyi District in the Kagera Region to Kampala the Ugandan capital, after Amin’s troops had attacked the area and roused the anger of then Tanzanian leader, Mwalimu Julius Nyerere, ending up in overthrowing Amin and inadvertently making Uganda ungovernable for the next 10 years until current leader, President Museveni, who had participated in that battle, upstaged his mentor Dr Milton Obote to assume power to this day.
According to a Tanzanian daily, The Citizen, Bernard Membe, the country’s Foreign Minister announced the East African state was ‘ready to send troops to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) to fight M23 rebels’. If any country is able to uproot the M23, that country surely has to be Tanzania. What is still confusing many, especially those in New York at the headquarters of the United Nations, is exactly what role President Museveni and his erstwhile student and leader of Rwanda are playing in the DRC troubles.
A UN report that has been vehemently denied by the two leaders states that there is evidence to show that both Uganda and Rwanda have been supplying the M23 rebels with the logistics and arms that have propelled them to overrun the DRC city of Goma in the last few days.
Uganda’s semi-official newspaper, the New Vision is reporting today that the embattled DRC leader Joseph Kabila will make a second trip in as many days to the Ugandan capital Kampala this weekend to ‘confer’ with both Presidents Kagame and Museveni over the continued presence in his country of the M23 rebels and the fact that a good number of them are already on their way to Kinshasa with the intention to bring to an end Kabila’s nearly 12 years in power.