By: Boaz Byayesu
Mr. President, please accept my sincere thanks for your great leadership derived from your great ideology and the durable purpose sandwiched with a patriotic vision and a relentless courage.
This good courage gave birth to the sustained resistance against acts of oppression, repression and all forms of injustice in Uganda during the reigns of Idi Amin and Milton Obote.
Mr. President, you launched a purposeful protracted struggle to restore freedom, fairness, justice and a sense of sanity after decades of insanity and monster-like lugubrious acts in a human society turned into a monster’s playground.
This required a set of wonderful qualities as God’s gifts including the patriotic spirit, the zeal and zest, and the perseverance measured by the innumerable sacrifices you encountered during this selfless struggle.
Indeed, it was a very long journey you walked to liberate Uganda without relenting, retreating, surrendering, and/or even abandoning the hazardous mission and a far-fetched purpose altogether.
Mr. President, I have all the reasons to cherish the charismatic struggle you championed to the end as the nation celebrates the tremendous results of a successful revolution enabled by your good leadership, great wisdom and the spirit of patriotism and pan-Africanism.
These great values enabled your leadership to change and transform our country from divisive politics of an abused nation to politics of a shared common cause and combined efforts of a nation state.
Mr. President, this successful revolution was an anointing of only God because it aimed at serving a defined purpose to defend and protect humanity.
This purpose is provided for in the book of life and truth (the bible), in the book of James 1:2-6 and also verse 12.
The scripture reads: consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God. \
Verse 12 says: Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him. He will defend the afflicted among the people, and save the children of the needy; he will crush the oppressor. He will endure as long as the sun, as long as the moon, through all generations. He will be like rain falling on a mown field, like showers watering the earth. These biblical words are neither purposeless nor simplistic but very symbolic.
Mr. President, this scripture means a lot in reference to the revolution you launched and led to the end. It means that it wasn’t your own power to win this war, but God helped and guided you to win this people’s campaign because God was your supreme leader and visionary guide.
Mzee, you offered yourself at a very young age like the biblical David against the giant Goliath to save the nation from the hands of those who provoked God many times by harboring very bad intentions and executing evil acts against humanity, the innocent children of God.
God, the almighty made you the pioneer of a higher purpose and a super vision; an icon of good courage; a fountain of knowledge and wisdom, and yes, a reliable champion and engine of a fundamental change.
Like Napoleon Bonaparte of the French revolution, you came at a time Uganda badly needed a courageous leader of your qualities and gifts. You picked up our nation from the ashes of defeat at the merciless and ruthless hands of the reigns of terror as Ugandans looked on helplessly and hopelessly.
Mr. President, upon your victory, some bright light shone breathing some atmosphere of sanity, peace and security in the country. Ugandans slept comfortably for the first time after decades of sleepless nights and chaotic days in a daily bloody routine in a state of turmoil, quagmire and hopelessness in the once pearl of Africa.
Mr. President, you said No to acts and politics of revenge against some stone-cold crazy and murderous UPC goons when you came to power in 1986.
I remember very well some people in my home area who were sharpening their anger instincts to perform a tit for tat as a very nice game, but were halted by your strict policy equipped with punitive measures against revenge.
At a young age, I was inspired by your new style of leadership and I began to think about the uniqueness of this mysterious young leader who rejects revenge yet some of the UPC guys clearly deserved some revenge.
I started to admire your unique leadership genius right away. This act reminded me of the power of forgiveness and the wisdom of tolerance that was taught to us as children and instilled in me by my parents. It is this very golden secret that resides in your endless popularity.
It is these virtues and ideals that have made you an icon of wisdom and a darling of Ugandans despite the odds. No wonder, you are competing with army Generals in the opposition politics yet these are the guys you made, mentored and groomed. Surprisingly, and impressively in an African perspective, they are safe and healthy and still opposing your policies and contesting your power. What an impressive challenge! What a role model!
Mr. President, your numerous achievements are the many fruits of the wonderful seed you sowed, and I am going to enumerate them one by one in my next article.
THINGS FALL APART
Mr. President, despite all these great things, good works and wonderful results, there is a lot of an unfinished business hence your legacy remains lacking and questionable.
It is disheartening to imagine that you seem to be following in the footsteps of the African leaders you used to castigate as power hungry leaders and lambast as mere briefcase politicians.
The culture of corruption and the accustomed practice of abuse of public office have become an acceptable norm and the way of life in Uganda. This criminal act is sadly championed and dominated by a small group of your political confidants, power brokers and lobbyists with a huge bandwagon of their boot leakers.
This has created an economic imbalance of a super rich elite class on the sidelines of the vast poor majority of the local population. And I am afraid, even the much publicized wealth creation program is not going to ably diagnose this disease and bear good results unless some other vaccine is discovered.
These good but corrupt folks are destroying the wonderful achievements NRM has earned by tooth and nail, the hardest way with bloody sacrifices under your resilient, steadfast, and visionary leadership.
These guys seem to put their special interests including personal wealth above the national interests. I even doubt if they truly care about your legacy. They know very well that their actions create a very bad image to the man carrying the mantle of all issues of the state. They, therefore, put a stain on the legacy of this great leader who is and will always be questioned for all the concerns and problems of the nation.
Mr. President, the consequences are not healthy at all.
THE SOUND ACCOMPLISHMENTS SPEAK VOLUMES
Mr. President, you have gradually achieved your dream of professionalizing the army (UPDF) to a very impressive standard.
You have groomed some leaders and managers who seem to have some good ideological vision, and are also intellectually competent enough.
You have successfully reshaped, revamped and tremendously grown the economy of Uganda to some pleasant level. You have further instituted an economic infrastructure and initiated economic programs like the hydro-electric power projects that can foster socio-economic development of Uganda.
You have also ably advocated for the East African federation with shared security concerns and economic partnership and prosperity. The strides are promising and the results are very pregnant.
THE END JUSTIFIES THE MEANS
Mr. President, the times have tremendously changed, and Ugandans have also relatively, progressively changed, and thus, they desire, deserve and demand suitable comprehensive and transformative changes in this computer age that suit the demands and aspirations of the 21st Century generation.
Mr. President, now you need to reconcile with all your revolutionary comrades, bring all the political opponents and critics across the political spectrum on board, create a think tank foundation for critical analysis and continuity of the movement system and retire heroically and honorably.
Mr. President, that way, you will have saved our nation again, secured your great legacy, motivated us further, promoted our bright dreams, catapulted the socio-economic progress of the pearl of Africa, and metamorphosed your patriotic and pan-Africanist ideology to even greater heights.
The author lives in Virginia, USA.