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Op-Ed: Ugandans Stand in the Face of Light to Defend Democratic Values


Tukwatanise Musa

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In recent days, there has been considerable debate among Ugandans, particularly those holding significant government positions, regarding the democratic integrity of the country. This discussion has been sparked by the growing popularity of Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba, the first Son of Uganda, who serves as the Senior Presidential Advisor on Special Operations and chairs the Patriotic League of Uganda. Speculation has arisen about his potential ascension to Uganda’s presidency.

Over the past 27 years, Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba has served in various military capacities, rising through the ranks to hold the highest position in the UPDF as a “four-star General.”

Since the installation of the Ugandan constitution in 1994/95, which permitted partisan politics, Ugandans have actively participated in democratic processes, exercising their right to choose leaders. This period has seen the emergence of numerous political parties, including the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC), Go Forward, Alliance for National Transformation (ANT), JEEMA, and the recent National Unity Platform (NUP), alongside the longstanding NRM/NRA revolutionary party, Democratic Party (DP), and Uganda People’s Congress (UPC), which have been active since the early 1950s/60s.

Throughout the democratic journey, spanning from 1986 to the most recent 2021 general election, political parties have consistently fielded candidates at all levels of governance, from local to national, engaging in fiercely contested elections where Ugandans have continued to express their support for Mzee Museveni.

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Ugandans’ trust in the NRM and Mzee Museveni has been grounded in the revolutionary principles upheld by the NRM government, rooted in Patriotism, Pan-Africanism, Democracy, and Socio-economic transformation.

Despite the robust democratic process, concerns have arisen about the future trajectory of Uganda, particularly as Mzee Museveni’s leadership tenure approaches its limit. Ugandans are now contemplating the importance of upholding revolutionary principles as they look to the future.

Under their constitutional mandate outlined in Chapter 4 of the 1995 constitution, Ugandans are expressing their desire for Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba to assume the presidency from 2026 onwards. They cite his demonstrated patriotism, beginning from his decision in early adulthood to join the UPDF and his subsequent advocacy for good governance and anti-corruption efforts.

However, the prospect of Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba assuming the presidency has generated mixed reactions, both within the opposition and among prominent figures in the NRM. While some express concerns about potential job security or exposure of corruption scandals, others support the idea as a continuation of the NRM’s legacy.

In response to the groundswell of support for Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba, certain factions within the NRM have sought to sow doubt, raising questions about the implications of monarchy and inherited presidency.

Nevertheless, Ugandans worldwide are committed to upholding democratic values, pledging to support and vote for their chosen candidate, emphasizing the importance of respecting the rights of all Ugandan citizens to participate in the electoral process.

Written by Tukwatanise Musa, The Political Antidote,, 0760564166

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