Should the Constitution get ready for more gang rape?

Alan Tacca

What you need to know:

  • Mr Museveni’s critics say he is now so old and so unpopular he is scared of another campaign, even with rigged elections.

In his Impact FM/Dream TV conversation with his host and worshipper, Gyagenda Ssemakula, President Museveni’s media advisor, Tamale Mirundi, made an intriguing claim on January 7. 

He said in the whole of Uganda, there were only three entities ‘ababaza’. Okubaza means strategic thinking, and deploying the correct tactics to achieve a desired (but not always obvious) result.

According to Mirundi, the first entity is a small group of people closely connected to President Museveni. He calls the group the ‘Mafia’.

The second entity that kubaza is President Museveni. The third entity, unsurprisingly, is Mirundi himself.

It is a very small minority. If you are not one of them, you, or me, might also just marvel and worship in the presence of omubazi. 

What geniuses of such calibre see instinctively and very clearly, we, ordinary idiots, only begin to see in vague outline after many years of rough instruction and rude experience.

The issue before Mirundi was the trending rumour about a plan by obscure NRM cadres. These mysterious fellows are rumoured to be scheming the removal of the constitutional provision for the direct election of the President.

Instead, the person to be President would be determined by the strongest party in Parliament; or something like that.

Mr Museveni’s critics say he is now so old and so unpopular he is scared of another campaign, even with rigged elections.

And if it is his son he wants to replace him, the would-be heir is even more unpopular, without a chance even in an election rigged double-double. Those are Ugandans talking; my fellow idiots.

According to Mirundi (on that particular January 7 morning!), this alleged scheme can only be the work of the ‘Mafia’ and other horrible animals in human form. They want to embarrass Museveni, and to exploit the scheme to plunder some more. Like they did with the constitutional amendments that removed presidential term and age limits.

So, Museveni was just an innocent beneficiary; a very lucky unfortunate man.

Yo-ho-ho! You know how we idiots laugh. Very happy, we laugh. Deeply troubled, we laugh. We grasp an insight, we laugh. Totally in the dark, we laugh.

But this is really hard. Only three entities that can be accurately described as strategic thinkers! What is their game this time? I need 40 years to understand them. So I must fold and compress time. What do I see?

The Opposition’s space and chances must be reduced. But Museveni’s innocence and goodness must appear enlarged.

The ‘Mafia’ and their legislative collaborators expected to deliver pain to the Opposition will be bought before, or paid after, doing their task.

The only propagandist who can kubaza will spread the word about Museveni’s innocence in the matter and also claim his billions.

Tactfully, Mr Museveni will place those billions on a small table where the ‘Mafia’ has easy access. The gangsters will prevent Mirundi from getting his money, thus ensuring that the enmity between him and them remains. The ranting and screaming against them in the media must continue, so that Museveni and/or his preferred successor can appear, if not angelic, at least more bearable.

In this scheme, the three entities are expected to be completely professional. They are not normally swayed or biased, whether any or all the features of government are comatose or brain dead, as long as their regime survives.

If the scheme works, and foreign watchers think that this third constitutional gang rape is another reason why they despise Africans, they can go hang.

Mr Tacca is a novelist, socio-political commentator.

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