African War Criminal
Kampala, Uganda, 04/03 - Uganda has alleged that there was an organised international hate campaign against President Yoweri Museveni and his ruling National Resistance Movement who have ruled the East Africa country for 19 years.
Government spokesman and Information Minister James Nsaba Buturo pointed his accusing finger at the media, saying that "there is a growing bad international press against President Museveni orchestrated and organised by sections of the international community with local collaborators aimed at bringing him down."
"This campaign is designed to whip up resentment against the leadership of President Museveni," he said.
Visibly dismayed, Buturo retorted that "it should be realised that the president enjoys massive countrywide support and that his vision for Uganda could transform the country."
Buturo targeted the New York based Human Rights Watch and international and local journalists as the promoters of the hate campaign.
"Neither HRW nor anyone else has the moral authority to teach Uganda how to fight HIV/AIDS. Our record in fighting HIV/AIDS is well known to the whole world, except the HRW," Buturo told a weekly news conference here.
"The hate campaign against Museveni and the NRM started in 2003 when the government supported a proposal to lift presidential term limits," he said.
Dutch Minister for Development Corporation, Agnes van Ardenne, said she had cautioned Museveni against the third term during her visit to Kampala in February.
Last week the US government joined a growing list of donors and international figures criticising Museveni`s ongoing campaigns countrywide to lift the presidential term limits so he could remain in power.
In its 2004/2005 report on the US support for human rights around the world, the US State Department warned that "democratisation could suffer a setback if the NRM succeeds in removing presidential term limits from the constitution."
The Department had earlier criticised the country`s human rights record, accusing security agencies of carrying out torture and illegal detentions.
A British Minister recently questioned Uganda`s democratisation process while Irish rock star and anti-poverty campaigner Bob Geldof criticised Museveni for aiming to rule for life.
The comments sparked off two pro- and anti-third term demonstrations in Kampala last week.