The meeting took place on the sidelines of the 6th Ordinary Summit of the Heads of State of the International Conference on the Great Lakes Regions.
“I held bilateral talks with my Democratic Republic of Congo counterpart, online His Excellency Joseph Kabila, and our host, His Excellency Eduardo Dos Santos,” reads a brief statement from President Museveni.
Details of what transpired in the meeting are yet to be revealed by the presidency.
However, the session comes against the backdrop of increased insecurity along the Uganda-Congo border.
Several people have perished in the tribal skirmishes in the borders districts of Bundibugyo and Kasese.
There has been talk that the Bakonjo of Uganda and their Congolese neighbours across the border intend to secede with the view of forming a new ‘Yiira Republic.’
The proponents of ‘Yiira Republic’ accuse the central governments of Uganda and DRC of marginalisation, claims dismissed as baseless.
During a recent working tour of Bundibugyo and Kasese, Museveni blamed some of the so-called prophets whom he said instead of positively guiding the youth on development projects, mislead them by using witchcraft to fight for the so-called Yiira Republic.
The President made it categorically clear that no such state will be included, “even an inch in Uganda” and nobody will ever take any part of Uganda anywhere.
“The earlier it is clear to everybody the better,” he cautioned.
He further warned of dangerous repercussions from the Congo side in-case they pressed ahead to demand for the Yiira state adding that it will also cause unnecessary friction between the two governments of Uganda and that of the DRC.
Museveni advised leaders in the conflict-ridden area to instead work positively to create unity among the people at home as well as those living across the borders who have similar linkages and advise them to rout-out the ADF’s and the Interhamwe (FDLR) for everlasting peace to prevail in the area.
“Why do you want to isolate our people who are scattered everywhere? You should work positively to bring our people who include the Bamba, Banyoro called Batuku in Congo, Alur and Lugbaras by creating unity,” he counseled.
Museveni who was accompanied by the First Lady Hon. Janet Museveni went up to Lamia border post on the Uganda/Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) border.
He addressed hundreds of people, both Ugandan and Congolese nationalities and also made inquiries and interacted with the people on the security situation at the Uganda-DRC border point and the neighboring areas in general.
Although not many complaints were raised on the border security, Congolese nationals petitioned President Museveni to prevail over Uganda immigration officials who stop DRC nationals from freely crossing into Uganda to do business in the country.
President Museveni promised Congolese nationals that he will discuss the matter with the DRC authorities but added that he has no objection to the matter since Congolese and Ugandans are the same people.
“Ugandans and Congolese are one people with the same heritage and most of you at the border speak one language and are related. These are mere colonial boundaries. I don’t see why you shouldn’t work together freely,” he said.
It is thought Museveni could have raised his security concerns with Kabila during today’s meeting.
Also important to note is the unfinished rebel M23 business.
Uganda continues to host former M23 rebels at Bihanga barracks in Western Uganda.
Efforts to repatriate all the former Congolese dissidents including commander Sultan Makenga are yet to bear fruit.
M23 political leader, Bertrand Bisiimwa recently told ChimpReports that DRC had backtracked on its commitment to provide the former combatants a safe corridor to return to their homeland.
They also accuse DRC of torturing or eliminating M23 members upon return to DRC, accusations Kinshasa denies.
Despite the IGCLR passing resolutions compelling DRC to disarm and repatriate the genocidal militia, FDLR to Rwanda, little has been achieved.
The failure to crackdown on FDLR has since led to the deterioration of relations between Rwanda and DRC.
The presence of FDLR in DRC also remains a huge threat to the stability of Rwanda and Uganda.
The two principals could have as well discussed the candidature of former Vice President Dr Speciosa Wandira Kazibwe for the African Union Commission chairperson.
Kazibwe is the East African candidate for AU top job.
It is likely that Museveni wooed Kabila and their host Eduardo Dos Santos, whose countries are members of SADC, to back Kazibwe’s candidature.
Before the ICGLR meeting, Museveni met with Kazibwe who briefed him on the progress of her campaign.
The Summit running under the theme; “Accelerating the effective implementation of the Pact and its Protocols for a more democratic and stable Great Lakes Region,” will consider reports of the meeting of Chiefs of Defence Forces and discuss the security and humanitarian situation in Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the Central African Republic and Burundi.