Remember the Malwa Group? Back in the days before Togikwatako, there was the fierce opposition to lifting of presidential term limit to allow the visionary one extend his welcome. As the Opposition mounted resistance against the idea of scrapping term limits, they formed a group.
But noisy Charles Rwomushana, then younger and reckless declared that the likes of Gen Jeje Odongo, Adolf Mwesige and others opposing Kisanja belonged to a ‘malwa group’. The snide remark was supposed to mean a very unserious group.
The reference was hilarious. The third term opponents laughed at it in spite of themselves. They found it self-deprecating and happily embraced the reference, not least because sitting around a pot of malwa (local millet brew) is one of the best ways to tap into spirited discussions of whatever topic.
Maj Gen Mugisha Muntu was last week disarmed and stuffed in a blue ballot box in Namboole. Muntu was felled by, according to cadres from the other party who have been crying more than Muntu’s wife, a one Patrick Oboi Amuriat.
Now Muntu, had you made a stopover at a malwa joint long before the FDC polls, you would have gleaned enough knowledge on how to win an election without winning, especially when you are the incumbent.
Muntu, Amuriat wasn’t even armed with bows and arrows, for crying out loud! True, he could have been one of the arrow boys from yesteryear of Kony insurgency but at Najjanakumbi, POA was nothing but a suit and some funny smile.
Incumbent never takes chances
Muntu, had you visited the malwa group, you would have learnt that, in Africa, an incumbent never takes chances. You don’t blink. You don’t have shame. There was this time that you went to Iganga and unbuttoned your shirt to show the scars from the bush. The wananchi cowed at themselves for having done nothing compared to your feat. Precisely, you should have done that to the FDC delegates. Most of them only know kifeesi, they have never jumped over dead bodies in the bush.
After unbuttoning, you would tell the delegates that if they voted you out, you would go back to the bush. Your former mentor is a master of that art of coercive electioneering. He slings that AK47 over his shoulders and talks about the bush. But you, Muntu, what did you learn from him?
Muntu, the malwa group says you prepare every page of the book for eventualities. A tally centre here, a safe house there... If you can’t stomach the dirty tricks played by your former mentor—isn’t that why you fled from under his armpit?—then look further across the borders.
You could have postponed the polls citing togikwatako urgency like the K of the other country keeps doing. You keep pushing the date until the Congolese delegates in FDC have given up on the polls and retired to singing lullabies for their grandchildren.
The problem is that you took things for granted. No political office is too small for victory. You either win or win. There is no two-way about it. Post-loss news briefings are like boils in groin—painful to all parties.
Those guys who follow you with crocodile tears know what happened when Amama Mbabazi tried to ride on TDA, but they will still drag you that side.