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The Politics Behind Among’s Loot of Public Funds – Part 5 – The Speaker’s Iron Grip on Parliament


Among's Power
97.8 Kazo FM Omushomesa

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Critics of Speaker Among often overlook a crucial aspect of her character. Despite facing criticism for her lack of subtlety and sophistication, it’s precisely these traits that constitute her most potent weapon. Employing a blend of incentives and punishments, she exercises authority with finesse. Known for her swift temper and inclination towards vengeful actions fueled by bursts of emotion, she also possesses the ability to swiftly cool down. In moments of clarity, she resorts to her area of expertise: bribery. Where intimidation falls short, financial incentives prove persuasive. Numerous parliamentarians have experienced both her wrath and her generosity.

Among initially entered parliament as an independent candidate aligned with the FDC, making her, like her polished deputy, Thomas Tayebwa, an opposition figure. Familiar with most opposition MPs on a personal level, they often confide in her their deepest concerns, many of which revolve around financial matters. Both opposition and NRM MPs turn to her for assistance, which she readily provides. However, it’s implausible that she could finance such parliamentary dealings with personal funds. Official embezzlement becomes the means to facilitate her actions.

This dynamic has notably resulted in a manageable parliament for Museveni, avoiding the headaches his predecessors faced. Among has effectively subdued parliamentary dissent. Contrary to what Ugandan social and traditional media commentators might perceive, much of the opposition in the country is integrated into the power structure rather than excluded from it. This integration is exemplified by instances such as the former leader of the opposition, Matthias Mpuuga, receiving a “service award” of Shs 500 million. Among extends benefits to several opposition MPs. From Museveni’s perspective, Among stands as a more favorable Speaker than her predecessors, successfully reigning in a potentially unruly parliament.

Characteristic Description
Speaker’s Tactics Speaker Among employs a combination of incentives and punishments to wield power effectively, swiftly alternating between anger and generosity.
Opposition Relations Having initially entered parliament as an independent aligned with the opposition, Among maintains personal relationships with numerous opposition MPs, often assisting them with financial matters.
Financial Management Among’s ability to resolve parliamentary issues through financial means suggests the use of official embezzlement to facilitate her actions.
Impact on Parliament Among’s leadership has resulted in a more manageable parliament for President Museveni, minimizing dissent and ensuring a smoother legislative process.


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Next Part — Read the Conclusion in Part 6.

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