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Uganda - Page 13

  • Africa's Top War Criminal still at large!

    Virunga Mountains

    Yoweri Museveni is responsible for the death of 5.5 million africans- from Uganda, Rwanda,Sudan and Congo DRC. The people of Uganda and the world believe very strongly that Yoweri Museveni should be arrested as soon as possible. We also call upon the international community to impose a travel burn on Yoweri Museveni and his squard of killers. 

    "Justice in northern Uganda requires that the ICC thoroughly examine UPDF abuses of the civilian population as well as abuses by the LRA. The willful killings, torture and mistreatment, rape and arbitrary arrests and detention of civilians by UPDF soldiers highlighted in this report are serious crimes that may fall within the ICC’s jurisdiction.The ICC has jurisdiction over war crimes particularly when committed as part of a policy or plan or on a large scale.

    The government remains responsible for many of the hardships and abuses endured by the displaced population. Since 1996 the government has used the army to undertake a massive forced displacement of the population in the north and imposed severe restrictions on freedom of movement. While justifying the displacements on grounds of security, the government has forcibly displaced people without a lawful basis under international law and then has failed to provide the promised security. Many of those displaced, including almost the entire population of the three Acholi districts live in squalid conditions in displaced persons camps that are susceptible to LRA attacks. The Ugandan army has failed to protect these camps, compounding the harm inflicted by the original forced displacement."

    Museveni's criminal army has continued to abuse ugandans with no impunity see report

    Free Uganda
  • Uganda Gaming project

    Virunga Mountains
    This is a shout to all those interested in gaming and multimedia design.

    I thought we could redesign the following platform to an interactive game:

    THis game has 3 parts (how they got here and how they get to the parliament building from here)
    Dictator museveni has been defeated and he has decided to hide in the parliament building-from this point, the Presidential Guard are putting up fearce resistance.

    The new project is very flexible, and you only need the following skills to be on-board:
    1.story -scripting
    3.analytical / observation
    6.critical / journalistic
    7.Morale boosting/ cheering

    Time duration: 1month first part of the game-3months second part- 6months third part
    Software: Flash, 3D Max, Maya, etc.
    Location: Local & international collaboration
    Aims: To develop skills in teamwork building, confidence, multimedia design, political/social awareness

    This project will be of benefit to Makerere university students of both Social Sciences and Computing, High school & College students, political activists, NRM-O defectors and ofcourse the underground people-Salute!!
    What do you think the next move should be?

    PLayer, its your show!

    Your Guide Map

    Free Uganda
  • Call-out for anarchists

    Virunga Mountains

    * The Venezuelan anarchist movement invites you to participate in the Alternative Social Forum at Caracas in January 2006, a gathering of anti-establishment social movements, in response to the bureaucratic World Social Forum promoted by the Venezuelan government.

    Groups and individuals from the radical, antiauthoritarian left in Venezuela are promoting an Alternative Social Forum (ASF), in parallel with the "official" (and state-managed) World Social Forum (WSF) that will take place from January 24 to 29, 2006, in Caracas. In this initiative are involved the local anarchists, including the CRA (Comision de Relaciones Anarquistas), the CESL (Centro de Estudios Sociales Libertarios), the newspaper El Libertario and similar collectives. When discussing the defining characteristics of this ASF, we insisted that it should give wide room to the anarchist proposals and experiences for social struggle, which has been widely accepted by the rest of the event promoters, since certainly they have great interest in listening and debating what we have to say.

    At the moment of writing this, the call is being made -both locally and internationally- to participate in the ASF; there is also a lot of effort being put into creating a more precise schedule, since there is a wide spectrum of movements, groups and activists -both inside and outside of Venezuela- who perceive that the official WSF is not the space for exchange, promotion and empowerment radicals aspire to. In that sense, we already envision the ASF as a space where the anarchists who participate will find not only interested listeners and the opportunity to discuss our ideas, but also a chance like no other for indirect exchange between ourselves.

    And so, we want to invite anarchists everywhere, and specially from Latin America, come to Venezuela the fourth week next January. We call upon you to participate in the ASF, which will provide us an ideal environment, not only to exchange ideas and experiences with both our own and others, but also to seize the occasion for the anarchists to have that face-to-face contact that is neccesary for a better communication and initiating joint initiatives. It must be made clear that we are not proposing an Anarchist Forum or anything like that; we only intend to promote the interaction between those who participate in the anarchist scene in this continent.

    We are open to all suggestions and comments you want to make about this initial summons, particularly about ways in which we could benefit better from this encounter of anarchists from many countries in Venezuela. We also invite you to visit the ASF webpage, to stay informed about the event, the ways in which you can participate, the proposals, and the discussions it generates.

    Free Uganda
  • The Other Campaign of Zapatista begins

    Virunga Mountains

    On January 1, 2006, the convoy that accompanied Subcomandante Insurgent Marcos departed from the Garrucha Caracol to San Cristobal de las Casas. With that marked the first step in the new Zapatista political initiative known as The Other Campaign, which hopes to forge an anti-capitalist alliance of the non-electoral Left in Mexico. The journey culminated with a public rally in the Cathedral Plaza, known as the Plaza of Resistance, where members of Zapatista Command spoke. Nearly 300 people of the Highlands region of the state of Chiapas, who have signed on to the zapatista initiative gathered with subcomandante Marcos, now called Delegate Zero, in his first day of the Other Campaign.

    To all the compañeros and compañeras of the "Other":

    To the Committees, Coordinators (or however they are called) which are being formed in each state or region in order to help with the first stage of the EZLN's Sixth Committee national work

    To the Security Committees which have been formed, or are being formed, for the accompaniment and security of SubDelegado Zero during this first stage:Compañeras and compañeros:

    Greetings from our compañeros and compañeras of the "Other." We are writing you in order to propose some criteria for security at the meetings and activities in which SubDelegado Zero will be participating.

    First - It is always better (and more effective) to avoid arrogance and grandstanding. It is not about isolating, but about accompanying and protecting. A security team is effective if it does its work without being noticed. In no way will the EZLN's Sixth Committee accept any persons on their security team who are of any nationality other than Mexican.

    Second - The work of security and accompaniment is avoiding problems due to crowds (in the unlikely event that there are any), preventing (as far as possible) any bad acts by some "anti-otra," and, most importantly, seeing that SubDelegado Zero does not get lost while going from one place to another (for example, making a "mistake," with obvious trickery, with the door when going to the bathroom and going into the "ladies" instead of the "gents").

    Third - In the event that the bad governments attempt some repressive measure, do not put up any resistance (especially if there are shots), and step aside. In no way should you put your life or liberty at risk. Always have identification with you and the help of human rights, always maintaining the truth, that is, that you are exercising a legal and legitimate civil right. You will not be violating any law by being next to an individual with a ski-mask and an elegant profile (with the contribution of the tummy).

    Fourth - In the event of detention, SubDelegado Zero knows what to do and, above all, what not to do. And so do not worry yourselves by imagining what you will do in such and such a horrible event. The response is: run, take shelter, inform, disseminate, mobilize...send me tobacco.

    I am, in advance, not authorizing anyone or any organization to assume, WITHOUT MY EXPLICIT VERBAL AND WRITTEN REQUEST, the legal defense of my person.

    Fifth - Neither the EZLN nor its Sixth Committee will be asking for any guarantees from federal, state or municipal officials. We do not expect anything, nor will we ask for anything, from those who have always treated us with contempt and disdain. If any Committee or Coordinator from a state or region decides to request from their respective officials respect for the liberties of meeting, association and movement, which are the prerogatives of any citizen, we are respectfully asking that they do so in their name, not in ours. Even if they threaten us from above or promise us detentions, jails, clandestine cellars or cemeteries, we shall go out to do the work which we committed ourselves to in the Sexta.

    Sixth - In the event of any major mishap, public statements or not, and the decisions which our organization will take, are the SOLE AND EXCLUSIVE purview of the top command level of the EZLN.

    Seventh - Whatever happens, know that it is an honor, and it shall be, to have you as compañeros and compañeras in struggle.

    From the mountains of the Mexican Southeast

    SubComandante Insurgente Marcos
    SubDelegado Zero of the Sixth Committee of the EZLN
    Mexico, December of 2005

    Compañeros, compañeras, support bases of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation, brothers and sisters of national and international civil society, good evening to everyone.

    Today it is 11:50 minutes southeastern time. Welcome to our Resistencia Hacia un Nuevo Amanecer Caracol. Once again we are joining together, men, women, boys, girls, young people and old ones, to remember and to celebrate the 12th anniversary of the armed uprising, and we are also remembering our compañeros who fell in combat in 1994. Please be so kind as to accompany us in observing a moment of silence.

    There have been 12 steps forward in building its history and making a reality of its transformation of struggle. And for 12 years we have also worked to strengthen and to build what did not exist before. Now there is hope and dignity for men, women, indigenous and non-indigenous to continue struggling with rebellion. Our Caracol of Resistance is a name of dignity, but we are the ones who give it shape. We are the ones who struggle, live and die. We are those of rebel dignity. We are the ones who built it and work it and watch over it in its growth..

    Compañeros and compañeras, EZLN support bases, for 12 years we have been resisting attacks of all kinds. They have attacked us with bullets, with torture and jail, with lies, contempt and forgetting, but here we are, and we, the most small of this land, shall continue. And here we will continue being zapatistas, even though the bad government wants to do away with our Autonomous Municipalities, which they attentively listen to and watch. They do not want what they see. This struggle has begun, and no one can stop it.

    Brothers and sisters of civil society, our hearts are made glad today to share with you, and we give you greetings of hope. It is only by being together and only as brothers that we can really respect each other and help each other, shoulder to shoulder, demonstrating to the powerful of the color of money and to those who exploit that there are many hearts in the world which are joined together, who help each other, who work united together in things they have in common, helping each other in their struggles and respecting each other's differences in order to build that new world where many worlds fit.

    The true peoples have sown different works through autonomy, and they are working like the most first peoples. When it is the new moon, as it is now, they sow, in order to yield good fruit to feed themselves, through that, for the future.

    Autonomy has allowed the peoples to build their regulatory, political, economic, social and cultural systems by themselves. We want autonomy so that we are all of value all the time, so that the one who governs, governs obeying.

    They have named their different authorities and different committees for the operation of the Autonomous Municipalities and the Good Government Junta, so they will keep working. It is not necessary to be zapatista in order to be taken care of and respected by the authorities in any part of our rebel territory. We, the zapatistas, are not going to attack anyone, not those brothers who are not zapatistas. We will be respectful with all our indigenous brothers, without regard to their organization, their party or their religion, always and as long as they respect us. The people themselves decide when to change or remove a compañero from a position, but none of the compañero authorities can receive any salary.

    Brothers and sisters, the Good Government Junta is grateful to this zapatista village, La Garrucha, to everyone, men, women, boys, girls, young people and old ones who have helped us through their great efforts in giving us this space for the gathering and who are continuing to organize more in order to move forward with our revolutionary struggle by the zapatista support base compañeros and grateful also to national and international civil society.

    Brothers and sisters, we have nothing else to give you other than our seeds of hope, other than our rebel and indigenous dignified hearts. Take them in order to continue scattering more seeds among your different peoples of the world.

    Liberty, justice and democracy.

    Viva Compañero Sup Comandante Insurgente Marcos
    Viva the EZLN.
    Vivan the peoples in resistance.
    Viva the Resistencia Hacia un Nuevo Amanecer Caracol.
    Viva national and international civil society.
    Viva the people of La Garrucha.
    Vivan the Clandestine Revolutionary Indigenous Committees.
    Vivan the compañeros fallen in combat in 1994.
    Vivan the Autonomous Municipalities in resistance.
    Viva the Sixth Declaration of the Selva Lacandona.
    Viva the Other Campaign.


    Radio Insurgente
    Giving Voice to the Voiceless

    By Deepa Fernandes

    It’s dark—the kind of profound darkness that a lack of electricity ensures in a mountainous jungle region.

    A dull pulse carries through the night of the southeastern Mexican state of Chiapas like an old woman’s heartbeat. It’s 4 a.m., and one can hear what has been a regular soundtrack at this hour for hundreds of years: a steady pounding as creased and callused brown hands massage dough for the day’s tortillas.

    And for the past year, Chiapas has greeted 4 a.m. with another soundtrack.

    Fade in crackle, which quickly disappears, replaced by a clear and youthful female voice:

    “Muy Buenos Dias.”/“A very good morning.”
    The voice is that of an insurgent fighter with the Ejército Zapatista de Liberación Nacional (EZLN), perhaps one of the world’s quietest and most powerful rebel armies. The world knows them as the Zapatistas.

    “Estás escuchando Radio Insurgente, la voz de los sin voz./“You are listening to Radio Insurgente, the Voice of the Voiceless.”
    The voice is being relayed to nearby Zapatista autonomous communities from a makeshift and very clandestine radio studio. The Zapatistas have built egg carton-lined studios, erected transmitters and trained themselves to operate a radio station. Hundreds of years of media voicelessness ended in August 2003 with daily, 16-hour broadcasts.

    “...voz oficial del Ejército Zapatista de Liberación Nacional.”/ “...official voice of the Zapatista National Liberation Army.”
    She is the official voice of the EZLN on the Zapatista radio network. The intimacy and immediacy of this uncensored mass communication is something that the indigenous rebel army has never before had.

    “Son las cuatro de la madrugada.”/“It’s four in the morning.”
    Zapatista time. Daybreak. Fade in Zapatista national anthem.

    The EZLN has said that access to and control of the media are vital for its community’s survival. And while successive Mexican governments have surrounded Zapatista communities with armies and allowed soldiers and paramilitaries to unleash terror on indigenous peoples, the Zapatistas have worked quietly to build the capacity to speak directly to their people. So quietly in fact, that when the Zapatista broadcasts first hit the airwaves, playing popular music and reading saludos from listeners, even government loyalists unwittingly tuned in.

    “Radio Insurgente is a radio station that is completely independent from the bad Mexican government,” explains the network’s Web site, radioinsurgente.org. This past November 17, the day the EZLN celebrated its 21st anniversary, the station launched an Internet audio version of the clandestine network. From recordings of local indigenous musicians and story-tellers to political speeches by EZLN leaders, the Internet audio archive serves as a history of Mexico’s indigenous people.

    “… transmitiendo desde algun lugar de las montanas del sureste Mexicano.”/ “… transmitting from someplace in the southeastern Mexican mountains.”
    Stories circulate about the Zapatistas’ masked leader, Subcommandante Marcos, sitting in a mud hut in the jungle writing communiqués on his newly upgraded Dell lap-top. Indeed the Zapatistas have taken full advantage of new technologies.

    Mexico’s indigenous insurgents have kept close to the ground, expanding their FM community radio reach to between two and four radio stations and teaching radio skills to young women insurgents. Zapatista division of labor assigns men the technical roles and women the programming, on-air and reporting roles.

    “Las reporteras de radio insurgente estuvieron en el lugar de los hechos. Asi que podemos transmitirles un resumen de lo que grabaron …”/ “Radio Insurgente reporters were on the spot and we bring you this summary of what we recorded …”
    Radio Insurgente reports breaking news from Zapatista and indigenous communities, blending political education with on-the-ground reporting. Take the April 10 incident this year in the community of Zinacantan, when community leaders went to see municipal authorities to demand access to potable water for their communities and were attacked en route by thugs from the Party of the Democratic Revolution. Reporters from Radio Insurgente were on the spot. They transmitted interviews with witnesses and those who were attacked about both the incident and their opinions about the revolutionary peasant leader Emiliano Zapata, whose death 85 years ago was being commemorated in Zinacantan when the attack occurred. That program is now archived on the new Web site.

    While providing information on the Zapatista struggle for autonomy and acting as a lifeline to the world, the Web site also serves as the legal arm of Radio Insurgente. It is archiving for posterity what has been broadcast to the inhabitants of the Chiapan jungles just in case the Mexican army shuts down the daily radio signal.

    Mexican broadcast law, similar to Federal Communications Commission laws in the United States, requires that one have a license to send out a radio signal. Red tape and corporate control of the media make it next to impossible for anyone to succeed in getting a license. Yet, tiny low-power wattage stations exist all over Mexico—all subject to threats and harassment by the Mexican military.

    In mid-September an indigenous station in the neighboring state of Oaxaca was violently raided by some 200 soldiers and police. Equipment was seized and destroyed, and 14 people were arrested.

    Fear of reprisal, however, has not daunted the Zapatistas. Programming has blossomed. The new Web site makes hour-long news specials available for radio stations to download and play. It features public service announcements that educate the public about violence against women and advertise upcoming programs like a special on Che Guevara. The Web site also archives speeches and communiqués by EZLN leaders, blending everything with Zapatista liberation songs and local music.

    “Este programa va dirijido a todos los campesinos y tambien a los indigenas que luchan por una vida major.”/“This program is dedicated to all the farmers and indigenous people who are fighting for a better world.”
    By adding to the thriving landscape of independent media in Mexico, Radio Insurgente is fulfilling a long-held dream of El Sup (Marcos), who once noted that “independent media tries to save history—today’s history—tries to save it and tries to share it so it will not disappear.” One wonders if Marcos had any idea back in 1997 when he issued this communiqué that a Zapatista-controlled, internationally accessible public audio archive of its people’s history was only a few years away.

    “Ahora vamos a escuchar a Mercedes Sosa que nos canta Alcen la Bandera. …”/ “Now let’s listen to Mercedes Sosa singing ‘Alcen la Bandera.’ …”
    Some worry that the Mexican government may try to shut down the Web site and the radio stations. The insurgent women who are responsible for the bulk of the programming, whose voices grace the airwaves from 4 a.m. through the night, realize the signal could be squelched at any moment. But for now, with the eyes and ears of the world drinking in the MP3 sounds of Radio Insurgente, it seems like the Fox government may have missed its chance to silence the voiceless.

    “Mucho animos para sus trabajos y que pasa una buena noche.”/ “Keep up your spirits in your work and have a good night.”

    Free Uganda
  • Uganda Elections 2006

    Virunga Mountains

    Free Uganda
  • M7 should be in prison - Besigye

    Virunga Mountains

    Dr. Kiiza Besigye says it should have been president Museveni in prison and not him.

    Besigye has told journalists during a press conference at his residence in Mbuya that President Museveni’s was convicted by the International Court of Justice for illegally entering and plundering Congo.

    He adds that his detention was political intended to stop him from running for presidency.

    Besigye and Ssebaana have also hinted on a possibility for the opposition to front a sole candidate to run against president Museveni in the presidential race.

    Ssebaana had paid Dr. Besigye a courtesy call while he addressed the press at his residence in Mbuya.

    Ssebaana says discussions are going on for the opposition to have a sole presidential candidate.
    Meanwhile Dr. Kizza Besigye is headed for Kayunga district where he is going to address his maiden rally since his release from prison yesterday.

    Free Uganda
  • Besigye back on the road

    Virunga Mountains

    KAMPALA, 2 Jan 2006 (IRIN) - Ugandan opposition leader Kizza Besigye, who is charged with treason and rape, was freed on bail on Monday after the High Court in Kampala ruled that his continued detention was illegal.

    "The accused should be released forthwith unless he is being held on other charges," John Katutsi, the High Court judge, said.

    He said the defence's argument that Besigye faced separate terrorism and possession of weapons charges before a military tribunal could not be used as an excuse to keep him in prison.

    Besigye, 49, was released soon after the woman he allegedly raped in 1997 testified against him.

    He was driven out of the court compound accompanied by his wife, Winnie, as a crowd of his supporters ululated and sang in his praise. The police had earlier used tear gas to disperse a crowd that tried to gather outside the court house.

    Besigye, who heads the opposition Forum for Democratic Change, is widely seen as President Yoweri Museveni's main challenger in presidential elections scheduled for February.

    Besigye, Museveni's former doctor, was arrested in mid-November three weeks after returning to Uganda from four years of self-imposed exile in South Africa where he fled after losing the presidential elections to Museveni in 2001. He claimed then that his life was in danger.

    Free Uganda
  • Museveni's conspiracy plan to rule Uganda for 50 years minimum- Dr Kiiza Besigye is prepared to resist it!!

    Virunga Mountains

     Why is DR Kiiza Besigye resisting Dictator Yoweri's Sectarian plan? Very few, apart from the insiders, can really tell why that fight has reached such a devastating magnitude.

    The greatest rivals, presently, were once intimate comrades especially during their guerilla struggle in the 1980s against Milton Obote's administration. Besigye was Museveni's personal doctor, which precisely means for most part of the struggle, Museveni's life was in Besigye's hands.The 'medicine-man' worked in different capacities in Museveni's government until in the late 90s. Besigye also wed Winnie Byanyima, a former close ally of Museveni in the 90s.
      What is bothering the whole world even the Bush administration is why the two are at each other's necks?

    In 1992, about seventy two (72) prominent Bahima allegedly met at Rwakitura, Nyabushozi, Ankore. The notable component of discussion was to rule the country for a minimum of 50 years. The minutes of the meeting were later published in Entatsi, a Kinyakore newspaper in 2000. Early this year a replicate document of what was published was smuggled to Parliament for tabling. Unfortunately or fortunately, government blocked it. President Museveni's home is at Rwakitura. A very high ranking leader in the country chaired that meeting.
    The indigenous people in Ankore are Banyakore, who comprise of Bahima and Bairu. Bahima, who are the royal group in Nkore are historically pastoralists and the Bairu, the subjects are cultivators although the transformation of the economy has intertwined their livelihood.
    As the saying goes 'When you follow the path of your father you learn to walk like him'.  The 1992 meeting reflected, quite a lot, the traditional conflicts between the two groups. The attendants discussed widely on the strategies they would use to retain state power and in the same vein economically handicap the other groups.
      'To agree is to make progress' They (Bahima) agreed to have their children head all security organizations above all intelligence departments. It is over 10 years since that meeting was convened and the cream of all security organizations, now, is comprised of Bahima. To join the Presidential Guard Brigade, the security organ responsible for Museveni, priority is given to Bahima from well known families. The issue of excellence is secondary.
      They emphasized equipping their children with the best education skills. In other words they agreed to send their children to the best schools and institutions (at whatever cost). A project, headed by a former member of parliament for Nyabushozi County, was thereafter designed to send Bahima students abroad.
      Before Museveni's government, a good number of Bahima detested formal education despite owning several herds of cattle. It is after that meeting that they started selling off part of their herds to educate their children as a Hima policy.
      In addition, the controversial state house-sponsored bursary scheme was initiated. The scheme has been criticized to no avail. The critics claimstate house only identifies Bahima for sponsorship at the university. Two secondary schools; Kanyaryeru and Ngabo both in Mbarara district were exclusively established for Bahima students. The state aids those students.
      According to the same meeting, Bahima would gradually take over all sectors of the economy. The participants projected that Bahima in the shortest period would infiltrate all levels of the economy. Several other issues were pointed out.
       However, during the meeting, someone close to the first family suggested that only the Basiita clan among the Bahima should rule. Museveni's family is allegedly from that clan.
       In essence, only Museveni's family had the mandate to govern. That issue led to major disagreements. Actually, some sections claim it is the reason some of the attendants later defected to the opposition hence the birth of Reform Agenda, Besigye's pressure group-and subsequently the Forum for Democratic Change, whose current presidential candidate is Besigye, again.
      Before he fell out with Museveni in the late 90s Besigye had criticized the latter's government of nepotism and sectarianism among others. It is possible that Besigye identified the conspiracy at its earliest stage, and that could be the very reason he stands to be liquidated. Museveni could have known Besigye would spill the beans during the presidential campaigns.
      Even in his 2006 manifesto, Besigye says: "FDC will re-establish the culture of public service best practices, and ensure that all appointments to public offices are based on merit rather than on sectarian interests and political considerations." So it could be true Besigye knows numerous state secrets so holding him in jail is the paramount alternative to seal his mouth.
      At close analysis, the fight between Museveni and Besigye is a smokescreen of the ethnic conflict between the Bahima and Bairu that is yet to explode. Besigye, notable analysts insist, is just a scapegoat. The fact is that this ethnic conflict has not started with Museveni and Besigye. It is as old as mankind.
     According to research by Nelson Kasfir in 'Uganda Now' early class stratification in Ankore gave social and political dominance to a tiny minority consisting of cattle herders who were ethnically identified as Bahima and who ruled cultivators, the Bairu.
      However, the introduction of the demands of a cash economy undermined these arrangements. By the Second World War, Bairu owned as many cattle as Bahima and by the 1970s owned two-thirds of the cattle in Bushenyi (a district in Ankore).
      At independence Bairu leaders had effectively taken political power from the royal Bahima family and its followers though the new notables were themselves fragmented by religious and other factional divisions. The turbulence of post-independence Ugandan politics has resulted in the eclipse of one group of political notables after another.
      Before 1975 a relatively small portion of the land in each district could be bought and sold as freehold, which included native and adjudicated freehold. The former consisted of about 270 square miles of land that was given to the Omugabe (king of Ankore) and his chiefs as part of the Ankole Agreement of 1901, and later extended to reward various chiefs during the 1920s.
      Though the amount of land alienated in these schemes was relatively small, it reinforced important political and social conflicts between fractions of the rapidly forming dominant class. Each faction was doing what its members could to gain control of Ankole kingdom.
      In particular, conflicts over the schemes deepened the sense of identification and cleavage between Bahima chiefs who had been the recipients of the Mailo estates and their main opponents, the protestant Bairu political notables.
      Furthermore, the firm party control that the UPC imposed over the chiefs after 1980 ensured that patronage for notables would play an important role in determining who acquired control over the land. These chiefs were drawn from the small fraction of the Protestant Bairu who threw their lot in with Obote (deceased president) on his return to power.
       The competitive use of ethnic characters to gain advantage in control over land led to dominance by Bahima notables in the protectorate period, which then gave way to control by one and then another predominantly Bairu-defined fraction after independence.
      To lend credibility to this argument, Museveni recently warned the judiciary against 'biased' rulings over land cases. Of course one would wonder why Museveni should particularly be interested in land issues even though a whole Ministry of Lands in addition to district Land Boards and Land Commissions exist.
      'Suffering teaches the wisdom of the ancestors' is another saying Museveni must have taken heed of. In his "The Mustard Seed" he clarifies, in circumlocutory, that he waged a guerrilla war not because the elections of 1980 in which he contested as a presidential candidate were rigged but rather to liberate his 'people'. Bahima, as pastoralists, no longer had sufficient land for grazing. This was as a result of the interference of the Obote politics. During Obote's administration, Protestant Bairu were awarded large junks of land at the cost of Bahima because the former in return overwhelmingly supported the UPC government.

    As I have earlier stated that Bairu were cultivators, in December 1957, a cooperative union in Ankore was started to boost coffee production and marketing.
      Banyankore Kweterana, made up of over 40 cooperative societies in Ankore, was formed with the help of colonialists. It was the economic bull that the Bairu used to milk.
      Coffee farmers would harvest their produce and sell it to the cooperative. At times the farmers, even before the harvesting period, would seek financial assistance from the cooperative management in difficult situations like paying school fees for their children. The union would bail them out with promissory notes which were presented to school administrations. It is against this background that the Bairu, who were the cultivators of coffee, are the most educated in Ankole.
       Banyankore Kweterana was-even to date-associated with Obote's UPC party. Undeniably, Obote had overwhelming support in Ankole.
      In fact when he returned from exile in Tanzania (1980) to lead the country the second time, he came through western Uganda and first stopped at Bushenyi where he knelt down and said, "I will die here". 
       Bahima, as pastoralists, therefore benefited little from Banyankore Kwetarana. Majority of them, because of their Catholic attachment, supported the Democratic Party (DP).
      When Museveni came to power in 1986 it was obvious he would fight Banyakore Kweterana, anonymous staff of the union have persistently noted. After all, they claim, the union had developed the other fraction of Banyankore at the expense of Bahima to which he belongs.
      Either by design or default, Museveni's liberalization policy he introduced soon after he became president dismantled Banyankore Kweterana immediately. The Coffee Marketing Board, the apex purchasing body, started buying coffee direct from the farmers rendering the union useless.
      During the guerilla war, Museveni's National Resistance Army fighters, according to Banyankore Kweterana chairman, Kesi Kabakyenga, looted coffee stocks and destroyed factories and other property worth three billions (Uganda shillings). Museveni's failure to compensate the union led to its collapse in the late 90s. Later on Museveni's brother Salim Saleh bought off some of its assets at a give-away price.
    At a general perspective, Africans have adopted capitalistic consumption skills other than productive ones. Therefore, the fight for state power is juxtaposed with theft of resources that can sustain them in leadership. In that respect, which ever tribe or clan rules Uganda may be no exception to that sin.
       Museveni once said, "the problem with Africa is that not only has its society not metamorphosed, it has actually regressed."
       He went on to say that in Uganda, both the feudal and artisan classes after being wiped out by colonialism effectively regressed into an almost exclusively peasant society.
      One reputable Ugandan historian, Dr. Joshua Muvumba, has pointed out why classes in society have been created to amass wealth.
      "Nevertheless in a rapidly changing world, Africa's classlessness is not static; on the contrary, the overriding desire of Africans today especially among the elites, is to change as quickly as possible from being classless to a class society through accumulating, amassing and stockpiling wealth as instantaneous as possible; by any means," says Muvumba.
      Like the other saying goes 'Do not insult a crocodile before crossing the river. Probably Besigye has insulted the crocodile but a Mauritanian chips in with a different saying 'Dust on your feet is better than dust on your bottom'. So let the medicine man pursue the struggle, the end will justify the means. Otherwise the 50 year-rule by one group of people is unjust.

    Furuma’s brother narrates ordeal while in Uganda

    He stayed in the same safe houses with dissident Major Alphonse Furuma in Kampala, Uganda; and heard proposals of coups against Kigali by top Ugandan military officers...

    Egide Mupenzi, 30, a young brother to Maj. Furuma, returned to Rwanda early December from Uganda, where he says, he was held hostage in several discreet military houses better known as safe houses, for over two years. During his stay in the safe houses, he was not mistreated but was denied freedom and eventually succumbed to pressure, a sickness he had never had before, says the professional lawyer, who was a member of Rwanda Police Force at the time.

    His story
    Mupenzi, who left Kigali for Kampala in January, 2001, through Gatuna Border Post to visit Furuma over what he calls ‘family matters’, told The New Times on Wednesday, that on arrival, he was instead led to a safe house by Ugandan military intelligence agents against his wish.
    “I left in January, 2003, to meet my brother (Furuma), who had asked me to find him in Kampala. We had just lost a brother (Captain Theoneste Rutangwa alias Tallman) and thus we needed to sort out some issues.
    “While still in Kigali, I had called asking him to come but he told me that he had no plans of returning and instead convinced me to find him in Kampala. I went and when I called him on arrival someone told me to find him at a restaurant called Fang Fang. But when i reached, I didn’t find him there as I had expected, instead someone who seemed to be a military agent received me and drove me to a safe house in Ntinda (a posh suburb in Kampala),” Mupenzi said.
    He says the man who received him at the restaurant left him at the safe house with another soldier who apparently, was the housekeeper. “I started suspecting something then. I had not seen my brother yet, and it appeared that these people were expecting me.” Mupenzi said, adding that the next day he told the housekeeper that he wanted to see Furuma or be left to go on his own.
    “He responded that Furuma was around, but when I pressurized him, he made a call and the other man who had received me at the restaurant, came and drove me to another nearby safe house, also in Ntinda, where I found him (Furuma),” Mupenzi adds.
    But, he says, he met a brother who had completely changed heart on his motherland. “He had a new line of thinking; I did not share his politics.” He says the house was heavily guarded by soldiers from both Ugandan military police and the Presidential Guard Brigade (PGB). The environment was more militaristic, he recalls.
    “I asked him about the soldiers, and he told me that he disagreed with the establishment in Kigali and informed me that he wouldn’t return. He told me that he wanted me to join him, arguing that I would not be safe in Rwanda.
    “I disagreed with him and asked him to let me go back but he said he had no powers to release me. Apparently, he also had no control over himself,” Mupenzi said. He said his brother told him no precise reason for his decision.
    He said besides Furuma, he also met a Rwandan girl, one Fidelite Uwimana, then a student at the National University of Rwanda (UNR), who sources say, was Furuma’s girlfriend. He had already started a long journey in the hands of Ugandan elite military, which held him since January, 2001 until March, 2003, when Maj. Furuma was relocated to the US.
    “That is when my nightmares started. I spent countless sleepless nights; nobody was concerned and Furuma was a brother with whom we were at loggerheads. He knew I was opposed to his line of thinking and I would frequently tell him that I want to return home, to no avail,” recollected Mupenzi.
    However, some sources in Kigali dispelled Mupenzi’s assertions, saying he had deserted the Police to join his brother, who had expressed intentions to wage war against the Rwandan government. The sources added that Mupenzi’s decision to come back was known after by the collapse of his brother’s plot.

    High-profile visits
    He said while there, several people visited Furuma. Most were senior Ugandan military officers including Maj. Gen. Kahinda Otafiire (Minister for Lands and Environment), the then Chieftaincy of Military Intelligence (CMI), Brig. Noble Mayombo, Maj. Muhozi Kainerugaba (son to President Yoweri Museveni), one Maj. Nuwe, among others.
    He recalls that they made frequent visits and discussed with Maj. Furuma. Asked about the kind of talk between his brother and the Ugandan officials, Mupenzi said, he did not participate in the discussions but agreed he had overheard Mayombo asking his brother about a possibility of a coup in Kigali and establishing Ugandan spy machinery in Kigali.
    “He asked him whether a coup against the current administration in Kigali was possible, and Furuma responded that it was impossible because there was no internal dissent of a nature that could lead to a coup,” he recounted. He said all the Ugandan visiting officials discussed politics, but most of the time, wanted to listen to Furuma.
    He said Furuma instead suggested a political battle against the Kigali leadership elections, ‘but he did not have a practical roadmap to that’. “He used to say the government could only be challenged through elections. However, he had no concrete plans for that as well,” said Mupenzi, who is a lawyer by profession.
    While at Ntinda, he says, a friend called Steven Mbabazi, who was also a policeman in Rwanda at the time, joined him without knowledge of the situation.
    The quartet stayed in Ntinda until April the same year before they were shifted to another safe house in Bweyogerere, another Kampala suburb. After persistent pleas for freedom, Mbabazi one day jumped the fence. The soldiers ran after him, arrested and imprisoned him. But he was later released and he too, returned to Rwanda a couple of weeks ago. “Security there was tighter,” he added.
    Besides the Ugandans, Mupenzi said Furuma was also visited by a group of Western diplomats, who he said were brought by Mayombo.
    “I heard the diplomats, who I believe were British and other western diplomats, proposing to relocate him to a third country, and him trying to convince them that he was safe in Uganda. He sort of tried to make a case against Rwanda to them,” he said.
    Some Rwandan dissidents, who were in other safe houses, joined them. He mentioned Maj. Frank Tega, Maj. Frank Bizimungu, one Sasita and a pilot, a Second Lieutenant whose names he could not recall. He said the Ugandan military took away Bizimungu several months later.
    Later in October, 2001, they were again transferred from Bweyogerere to Makindye, where they stayed until March, 2003. While there, he said he developed several sicknesses including pressure. The Ugandan military, however, provided some medications to him. He says two doctors, a Cuban and a Ugandan lieutenant colonel, treated him.
    Furuma’s relocation to a third country was a result of a series of the UK-brokered talks between Kigali and Kampala. Similar relocations were held for Ugandan dissidents who had fled to Rwanda at the time.
    Asked about what he felt when his brother, Maj. Furuma bid him farewell, Mupenzi said, “There was nothing like emotion. We were no longer one. All I needed was to get out of the nightmare I had experienced for years.” He said he and Uwimana, who had then been abandoned by Furuma, took to different directions after they were released.
    After his release, he said he sought assistance from a relative in Kampala, who helped him rent a house in Ntinda and started arranging for him to return home through the Rwandan Embassy in Kampala.
    “It was a challenge to associate myself with Rwandans even in Kampala. They looked at me as a dissident, as someone who had joined Furuma’s line of politics,” he said. “However, I kept explaining my ordeal to them.”
    He says even after his eventual return to Kigali early December, 2005, he was greeted with suspicion by his friends. “It is still a daunting task to integrate in the community. But I am glad that I have reunited with my family. I am now at peace and secure,” says the man, who is the  last born in a family where Maj. Furuma is the first born.
    Mupenzi said many Rwandans are still holed up in Uganda’s safe houses, the largest being in Bweyogerere in Kampala which houses about 200 Rwandans including dissidents Colonel (rtd) John Gashugi, Maj. Tega, Sasita and one Captain Banga.

    Source; Rwa times

    Free Uganda
  • uganda Elections 2006

    Virunga Mountains

    Museveni a coward – Byanyima
    David Mafabi
    Ms Winnie Byanyima, wife of detained FDC leader Kizza Besigye, has described President Yoweri Museveni as a coward who even fears his own shadow.
    She has also accused the NRM leaders of being perennial liars and thieves. Byanyima was speaking at an FDC campaign here on Friday.

    She said: “The ongoing intimidation, harassment and imprisonment of opposition members shows that Museveni is a coward who fears even his own shadow. How do you fear fighting a person whose hands are tied up? This shows that Museveni, on a politically level ground can’t compete favourably and take the day.”

    Byanyima added: “This is a government of liars and thieves. For sure, how do you steal Global Fund money meant for fighting Malaria, TB and HIV/Aids at the expense of the patients for your own selfish interests? How do you go to Congo to protect Ugandans and plunder and loot?”
    The cheering crowd kept shouting agende, agende (Let him – Museveni – go).

    Byanyima said she was not shaken by Besigye’s imprisonment. “I have not shed a tear about it, because Besigye’s imprisonment has opened the eyes of most Ugandans that we are all prisoners.” She said Ugandans had been imprisoned in abject poverty, IDP camps, poor education, the LRA war and poor health.

    Bugweri MP Abdu Katuntu said whereas Museveni described him as poisonous mushroom, he (Katuntu), had discovered that “Museveni is like a jigger that is eating up Ugandans.” Katuntu urged Ugandans to get rid of him. He dismissed claims that Museveni is the only one who had a vision, adding that many Ugandans, including him [Katuntu] were more educated than Museveni - and better placed to lead thecountry.

    The FDC chairman, Dr Sulaiman Kigundu, amused the crowd by remarking:
    “It is finished, the man has gone Besigye like Kwame Nkrumah, Nelson Mandela and the late Jomo Kenyatta will come from jail and walk to state house.”

    Free Uganda
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