By Henry D Gombya, Managing Editor
Uganda is no longer a democracy but a military dictatorship where there is no hope at all for a free and fair election to choose a new leader. The country’s Electoral Commission that announces the winner of a general election is nothing but ‘a mouthpiece’ to announce those that the current regime want to be announced as winners.
This was the assessment made Wednesday by former Ugandan opposition leader Col Dr Kizza Besigye during his appearance Wednesday on the Voice of America chat show, Straight Talk Africa hosted by the programme’s Ugandan-American anchor Dr Shaka Ssali. Dr Besigye who in recent years has epitomised what it is to be an opposition leader in an African country, told the programme that it was public knowledge that his party, the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) won the 2006 presidential general election which would have seen him remove the still incumbent Yoweri Museveni from the post he has held since 1986. “I have defeated Museveni in elections and I have defeated him in courts but there is still no change of leadership,” he said.
Joining the show from the VOA studios in New York, Dr Besigye, who spends most of his time unofficially under house arrest in his home near Kampala, warned that despite all attempts by President Museveni to deny space for political parties to flourish in the country, he was optimistic that change in Uganda was inevitable. He charged that the current National Resistance Movement administration has turned the country into a military dictatorship that uses the military and other security forces to stay in power.