President Museveni has dampened hopes of carrying Uganda carrying out substantial political reforms.
He said during the State of the Nation Address on Tuesday that Uganda had already carried out reforms.
“I have been hearing some circles talking of political reforms. Modesty is not always a virtue; when you are modest people take you for granted. The fact is that Uganda has already carried out the most advanced political reforms,” said Mr Museveni during the State of the Nation Address in Kampala on Tuesday, May 31.
Democracy is one area, Mr Museveni said, where Uganda does not need aid because “that is what we fought for here and in the rest of Uganda for many decades”.
After the February 2016 presidential elections, which, according to the Electoral Commission, Mr Museveni won with 60 per cent of the votes tallied, there have been calls by a section of Uganda’s development partners for the government to institute meaningful reforms of the laws on elections to ensure a level playing field.
Mr Museveni, whom the Chief Justice Bart Katureebe sworn in for another five – year term, has, however not shown any magnanimity.
He even kept mum when the Uganda Police Force on May 11 – a day before he was sworn in – arrested the Forum for Democratic Change 2016 presidential candidate Kizza Besigye.
The police charged Dr Besigye with treason, a crime that carries a death sentence upon conviction.
During the state of the nation address, the Mr Museveni did not at any time refer to Besigye’s imprisonment.
Instead, he said having followed closely world and historical events over the last 50 years, he is not aware of society in the world that is more democratic than Uganda.
Mr Museveni pointed to reforms and structures of democracy.
“How many other countries in the world have special representation for the women, for the youth, the disabled, the workers or the soldiers? We have also done away with the sub-colonialism of the colonial and the time following the end of colonialism, before the advent of the NRM leadership,” posed Mr Museveni.
To that, some Members of Parliament shouted, “Rwanda, South Africa, Kenya and South Sudan.”
The bit about army representatives and having a representative for the minority tribes such as Ik and the Tepeth people from Karamoja region drew cheers and murmurs from the MPs.
“Our democratic structure is comprehensive, thorough, and massive; it is not easily rivaled. The only pollution in this massive liberation movement has been the mistake of careerists introducing the use of money in electioneering,” added Mr Museveni.
On hearing this, murmurs spread through the pews at the Serena Hotel Conference Hall in Kampala, Mr Museveni was prompted to say, in jest, “I will attend court [proceedings] where I will be tried properly. You organise a proper court where I will be tried [on the matter]”.
Source: The Monitor