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Rebel MPs and tragedy of Uganda politics

Events unfolding rapidly in Uganda as our beloved country prepares for elections in February 2021 confirm what I have observed before that, Ugandan politicians never cease to amaze, amuse, disappoint and offend in almost equal measure.

Who could have imagined a few days ago that NRM ‘rebel’ MPs whom many Ugandans hailed as heroes, for resisting temptations and rejecting attempts by the corrupt and decadent ruling clique to bribe them to support the removal of the age limit in 2017, would go and kneel before the sole beneficiary of that treacherous act and beg for forgiveness from him!

As a friend reminded me, “this is Uganda” where anything goes and nothing is off limits for politicians who treat the noble profession of politics as an activity whose primary goal is to make lots of money quickly and grab many properties.

These contradictions raced in my mind after reading a story in Saturday Vision of July 18 titled, “How NRM rebel Members of Parliament sought President Museveni’s pardon.”

According to the story, 16 rebel MPs met Sabalwanyi at State House, Entebbe, on July 15 to beg for forgiveness from the chairman and sole candidate of NRM. The team leader of the prodigal children, Kumi Woman MP Monica Amoding, told Sabalwanyi on behalf of the 16 MPs, “We are here as your sons and daughters. We request you to forgive us and we move on.”

Why should anybody seek forgiveness for doing the right thing? It’s ridiculous and akin to a scene from a theatre of the absurd.

The meeting was organised by the NRM secretary general, Ms Justine Kasule Lumumba. That such a meeting took place at all is a sad commentary on Uganda politics, but especially on Ugandan politicians, some of who are fundamentally political mercenaries, hyenas and vampires who have exploited and plundered Uganda for many years without mercy!

One of the 16 who had absolutely no business to be there is Workers MP Sam Lyomoki. He had the audacity to tell Sabalwanyi, “Without your revolution, we would not be in that Parliament; so thank you for this opportunity and please forgive us.”

NOTU and the workers of Uganda should demand Lyomoki’s immediate resignation, with a public apology, for embarrassing the gallant workers of Uganda whose struggle for a minimum wage has been frustrated and blocked by the NRM regime. Shame on him!

No wonder Sabalwanyi treats the toothless and spineless Parliament of Uganda as his rubber stamp and doormat. He implicitly said so in his remarks to welcome the rebels back to NRM.

Sabalwanyi told the MPs that what should preoccupy them was the future of the Black race, which is frankly laughable. He claimed that he “joined leadership to support Black people to survive and prosper. It is not a career” and stressed the need for the MPs to focus on the four principles of NRM, patriotism, pan-Africanism, socio-economic transformation and democracy.

Sabalwanyi’s wanton invasion of DR Congo in 1998 and his blatant interference in the internal affairs of South Sudan contradicts his false claim that he is a pan-Africanist and a man who supports the struggle of Black people to survive and prosper in the world.

The just, patriotic, peaceful and relentless struggle of Ugandans for freedom, justice and peace must and will continue until oppression, nepotism and tyranny come to an end. I tell you, the verdict of history on the 16 unprincipled MPs will be harsh and merciless!

Mr Acemah is a political scientist and retired career diplomat.

This article was published by Daily Monitor.


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