Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | President Yoweri Museveni has responded in writing to MP Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine’s recent statements on the political situation in the country following the Age Limit debate.
“It is very good when the opponents of the NRM put in writing their views. We are, then, able to demolish them because the NRM, right from the 1960s as a Student Movement, is a solid force as far as both ideology and action are concerned,” Museveni said.
Museveni, who signed off his letter as “Jajja”, was critical of Bobi Wine’s recent statement that the NRM caucus took a decision on the Age Limit debate “at a time when our nation has been bleeding for the past 31 years. Our country’s former glory is all gone.”
“Bobi Wine, you are either uninformed or you are a liar, a characteristic you so liberally apply to me,” said Museveni, adding “Where was the ‘former glory’ of our country when people had no salt, no sugar, no paraffin, no security of life or property?”
“It is, actually, only in the last 31 years, especially after 2007 when we finally defeated the ADF in the Semliki valley, that Uganda has had peace for the first time in the last 500 years. ”
Crime not same as war
On crime, Museveni said it is true that there has been a spate of murders and other crimes some of whose perpetrators have not been brought to book. “However, crime is not the same as war and terrorism – both being the big problems the UPDF has defeated. Secondly, some of the murderers of the young women have been arrested and charged in Court.”
Social and economic issues
On Bobi Wine’s statement that “our children face an uncertain future where unemployment is the order of the day. The National Debt has turned us into slaves and the gun has become master,” Museveni said the NRM has laid out ways to resolve the issues.
“There are three issues here: unemployment; the National Debt; and the gun. Yes, there is unemployment but the NRM, long ago, laid out the way to resolve it. It is through the four sectors: commercialized agriculture; industries, services; and ICT,” Museveni said.
“What is amazing is the opposition, to which Bobi Wine apparently belongs, is always opposing new industries (e.g. sugar in Amuru, they delayed Bujagali dam in the 6th Parliament (1999) etc.) Recently, they have been opposing the Land Amendment Bill which aims at, on the one hand, quickening the process of getting land on which to build the very infrastructure (especially the roads, the railway and the electricity) that is crucial for attracting industries, services companies etc that are necessary for solving the unemployment problem and, on the other hand, stops the squandering of Government money in fictitious compensations.”
On jobs, Museveni writes, “what is amazing is that Bobi Wine does not refer to East Africa, does not refer to the Great Lakes, does not refer to Africa. He seems not to be aware of the vital crucialness of regional integration. We cannot sustainably create jobs if we do not create more market space for our entrepreneurs. To see young people who are oblivious of this issue but in positions of leadership is not good for the country. We had a Pan-Africanist stand when we were in our early twenties. That is how we were able to push Uganda so far and for so long.
Age limit debate
On the Age Limit ammendment bill that has been tabled in parliament to remove the 75 year limit for the presidency, Museveni said “the Age Limit Debate is starting. I will give my views at the right time. What is not acceptable, however, is intimidation and violence. Those are fascist methods. Let everybody speak his mind freely and without threats. We shall confront and defeat anybody who intimidates or threatens our peace.”
FULL MUSEVENI MISSIVE