What you need to know:
- Gen Muntu’s statements come after Mr Gawaya Tegulle, a lawyer, on May 5 sued Gen Muhoozi in the Constitutional Court for expressing interest in the Presidency.
The national coordinator of the Alliance for National Transformation (ANT), Maj Gen Mugisha Muntu, has criticised Gen Muhoozi Kainerugaba, a serving officer in the national army, for indulging in politics without first retiring.
“Gen Muhoozi has got a legitimate right to run for any office he wants, but it must be done in a clear, transparent manner. What he does in military uniform should be what any other serving officer could do, but because it is improper that a uniformed officer can get involved in certain activities in which other officers in uniform cannot,’’ he said.
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Gen Muhoozi, who is also the commander of the UPDF Land Forces, last month kicked off a series of fetes to celebrate his 48th birthday, with speculation rife that it is a launch pad for his quest for power.
The celebrations, which were flagged off at Kololo Independence Grounds, and later crowned with a state dinner at State House, Entebbe, at which President Paul Kagame of Rwanda was in attendance, have since spread to other areas.
Speaking at the launch of the Shs5b Buwama Seventh Day Adventist Church, Vocational School and Health Centre at Buwama Village in Butagaya Sub-county, Jinja District at the weekend, Gen Muntu said UPDF officers are rooted in the sacrifices of people, so they cannot allow “opportunistic” and “deceptive” methods to propel someone because of a biological relationship with the next President.
“They should not play around with sacrifice of so many who are dead and retired; we are 45 million people, pay taxes and cannot accept to be manipulated by one human being who has got blood like we do.
“Nobody is saying Gen Muhoozi cannot run for presidency. He can if he wants, but he should get out of that (military) uniform,’’ he added, calling upon Ugandans, including Members of Parliament and religious leaders to condemn it.
He said the current political situation is not good because “we see deception as a method of governance and when you have deception, it creates a problem within the politics of the country”.
“Right now, when you look at the deception and manipulation that is being used to project Gen Muhoozi, it is not correct,’’ the former army commander said.
On March 8, Gen Muhoozi through his Twitter handle announced his retirement from the army, but never formally filed a letter with his employer.
On March 13, the UPDF spokesperson, Brig Felix Kulayigye, told Sunday Monitor in no uncertain terms that Gen Kainerugaba was still an active duty service member with the Force and was “working normally” as “he is neither sick nor arrested.”
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Gen Muntu’s statements come after Mr Gawaya Tegulle, a lawyer, on May 5 sued Gen Muhoozi in the Constitutional Court for expressing interest in the Presidency.
Gen Muhoozi was jointly sued with the UPDF Chief of Defence Forces (CDF) for being an overseer of the military and the Attorney General, who is the government’s chief legal adviser.