By Father Anthony Musaala
The president’s vapid assertions that Buganda was ‘tribally motivated’ during the recent elections are rather pitiful and dangerous.
Pitiful because they show how rapidly a clever politician becomes desperate when his party fails, albeit in just one region of the country.
Dangerous, because his warped thinking has a darker, vengeful side to it.
The truth is that the NRM lost the elections in Buganda because of corruption,unequal distribution of wealth, endless brutalities on citizens, and the regime’s own tribalism.
The unseated Baganda ministers (all twenty seven) belonged to the ruling party which had become a ‘tribe’ in itself, serving its own interests.
Now these unfortunate Museveni cohorts havre become sacrificial victims deposed by NUP who comprise notably Baganda and non-Baganda in the central region.
So the president’s remarks are illogical but have provoked defensive reactions from different quarters in Buganda, even from the Katikkiro.
This reaction helps Museveni to gauge and ‘reset’ the Baganda, whose political leanings are sometimes unclear, and will also help him to tease out who is friend and who is foe in Buganda, after this ballot debacle.
His ‘tribal’ assertions, if believed, also help to recreate an old suspicion, that the Baganda either want to opt out of Uganda, or recapture the political heights.
If so, then his fulminations are a kind of ‘reverse psychology’, a diversion from the obvious ethnic biases in his own dysfunctional government, as he plants his ‘anti- buganda’ weed-seed into the national psyche.
Playing the anti-baganda card however, is nothing new in Uganda’s politics.
Obote did it in the years after indpendence.
It helped him to justify the abrogation of Uganda’s first constitution, which abolished the kingdoms, including the kingdom of Buganda.
Obote’s notorious saying: ‘A good Muganda is a dead one’ struck a chord with some non-Baganda who had been ruled by Baganda chiefs, who became agents of the British during the colonial era.
However, Obote’s anti-Baganda attitude sealed his fate among the Baganda, who massively supported Amin’s coup when it came, even though Obote’s government, like Museveni’s, had acheived some notable strides in development.
Museveni, to avoid a repeat of this, needs to reign in his uncontrolled ‘messiah complex’ – a delusional need to ‘save’ Uganda, when it needs saving from Musevenism.
These new calumnies against the Baganda, are a strategic attack on the NUP.
As the NUP gains national strength, the nonsensical tribal allegations by Mr Museveni will simply evaporate, and he will have to try a better ploy.
Of course, as always we wish our president success.
A New Ugandan.
Father Anthony Musaala is Irish- born of Ugandan heritage currently living in Kampala, Uganda where he ministers as a priest and evangelist through music, dance and drama.