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Museveni’s Launches Seventh Term Amidst Opposition Infighting


Museveni's Launches Seventh Term Amidst Opposition Infighting
PHOTO — Murungi Ada

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President Yoweri Museveni, leader of Uganda’s ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM), recently launched the update of the party’s voters’ register, hinting at his intention to pursue a seventh term in office in 2026. The move, marked by his renewal of party membership and signature on the register, aims to bolster the party’s existing 11 million members.

During the launch, President Museveni emphasized the party’s commitment to understanding and addressing the needs of the people. This significant step solidified speculations surrounding his potential candidacy and quelled uncertainties about backing his son, Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba, for the presidency.

Hajat Hadijah Namyalo, a senior presidential adviser, rallied support for Museveni’s reelection bid among party leaders and officials. Additionally, Dr. Tanga Odoi, the NRM Electoral Commission chairman, affirmed President Museveni as the sole party flag-bearer for the 2026 elections, dispelling any speculations about alternative candidates.

Richard Todwong, the NRM Secretary-General, expressed the party’s dedication to upholding Museveni’s legacy and urged him to continue his leadership beyond 2026. These declarations underscored the party’s unified stance in endorsing Museveni’s continued presidency.

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Concurrently, within the opposition, a clear challenger to Museveni’s dominance has yet to emerge. Dr. Kizza Besigye, a four-time presidential candidate and former president of the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC), is contemplating forming a new party. Besigye’s decision hinges on consultations at the grassroots level, scheduled over the next two months.

The FDC, under Besigye’s leadership, faced internal strife following allegations of receiving funds from President Museveni to undermine the party during the 2021 elections. This discord fractured the party, hindering prospects of reconciliation.

Meanwhile, the National Unity Platform (NUP), buoyed by its electoral success in 2021, faces internal rifts. Party leader Robert Kyagulanyi, also known as Bobi Wine, clashes with Mathias Mpuuga, the former leader of the opposition in Parliament. Kyagulanyi accuses Mpuuga of impropriety for accepting a monetary award, while Mpuuga defends his actions and challenges Kyagulanyi’s leadership.

Despite the opposition’s internal struggles, President Museveni remains poised for another term, leveraging the political disarray to reinforce his image as a stalwart against perceived leadership deficiencies. As Uganda’s political landscape simmers with contention, Museveni’s prospects for a resounding victory in 2026 appear increasingly promising.

Table: Overview of Uganda’s Political Dynamics

Actor Position Actions/Comments
President Museveni Leader of NRM, Eyeing Seventh Term – Launched party’s voters’ register update – Signaled intention for reelection – Garnered party support – Positioned as stabilizing force amidst opposition discord
Opposition Leaders Fragmented, Internal Discord – Besigye considering new party formation – FDC plagued by internal strife – NUP facing leadership clashes
General Population Observing Political Developments, Discontent with Status Quo – Monitoring political landscape – Experiencing frustration with leadership dynamics

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