The rule of a Tyrant

For the past 35 years Yoweri Museveni has been the ruler of Uganda. In the space of 35 years he has
asserted himself as the law and order of the nation.

However, Uganda is currently at a possible cusp of a political transformation. This is as a result of
Robert Kyagulanyi is commonly known as Bobi Wine, who is Museveni’s main competition at this
year’s elections. Kyagulanyi has gathered the support of many young Ugandans who want change.
However, these young people have been met with violence from the police as they delineated their
support for Bobi Wine. These acts of violence have currently sparked protests led by Bobi Wine’s
supporters as a form of retaliation. This is one of the many incidents that are indicative of the fact
that Museveni or his loyal supporters are willing to use any resource to destabilise a revolution. In a
democratic society, people should be allowed to express their political affiliations openly without
fear. However, freedom of expression and desiring change has become grounds for punishment. In
his 35 year rule, Museveni has placed himself on a pedestal of superiority, by striking fear and
intimidating those who dared to speak up or be different.

In 2014 Museveni signed an anti-gay bill that guarantees life imprisonment for gay people. This
means he signed a bill that punishes an entire population for merely existing. This goes to show that
he has used the Presidency to perpetuate his antiquated viewpoints. This predisposition amongst
some conservatives to be judge, jury and executioner towards other humans is appalling. This
attitude is even more cruel and insensitive when it derives from world leaders charged to uphold the
values of a democratic society. While speaking on Africa live he said ‘’ this is my house, I know how
to run my house’’. The idea that he thinks he owns Uganda, has allowed him to commit human
rights violations with absolute impunity. When Museveni challenged a constitutional law which
limits the age of presidency to 75, it became evident that he had planned on staying in power for
many years to come.

While tensions rise in Uganda in relation to the upcoming elections, Museveni has resorted to
intimidation in order to keep running Uganda like his house. As a result, Bobi Wine was arrested a
few weeks before the elections, he was charged with encouraging his supporters to incite violence
on Museveni’s vehicles, and Bobi Wine’s supporters have been at the receiving end of attacks from
law enforcement. As a consequence, journalists live in fear and opt to stay anonymous whenever
they have to do their job.

Furthermore, According to Aljazeera, the Ugandan Communications Commission’s Executive told
internet service providers to close down all social media platforms. This was in an effort to discredit
Wine’s strategy to use social media as a means to rally support. This proves the lengths that
Museveni or his loyal supporters have resorted to in order to secure a victory and stay in power. This
goes to show that the political space is more convoluted than one could possibly imagine. These
actions prove that democracy is a privilege in Uganda and it is only awarded to bigots. The idea of change is clearly a point of contention. However, the young people of Uganda clearly want change at
any cost.

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