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Press Releases


UDU ideas for Uganda’s future are catching on

As Secretary General with executive responsibility for guiding the affairs of United Democratic Ugandans (UDU), an umbrella organization of opposition political parties and organizations at home and abroad, I am pleased to report to fellow Ugandans at home and abroad, friends and well wishers, that UDU ideas to effect sustainable peace, security and equitable development for present and future generations are catching on.

These ideas are enshrined in the National Recovery Plan (NRP) supplemented by subsequent pronouncements about the future of Uganda. These ideas include the following:

1. UDU has consistently called for peaceful resolution of political differences in the first instance. This idea was endorsed at The Hague conference of November 28-30, 2013 that brought together participants from home and in the diaspora;

2. UDU has advocated that Uganda belongs to all Ugandans and Uganda comes first. UDU is a forgiving organization but those who have committed mistakes and/or crimes need to come forward and tell us exactly what they did wrong.

3. UDU has called for a Truth and Reconciliation Commission to record what has happened in independent Uganda to ensure that those commissions and omissions are not repeated;

4. UDU as an innovative organization has called for a transitional government of all stakeholders including NRM to prepare a level playing field based among other things on a national population census and national convention to know how many and who we are and agree on how Ugandans want to be governed before organizing a free and fair multi-party elections underpinned by a truly independent electoral commission, a truly independent vetting commission on the basis of agreed upon criteria for presidential and parliamentary candidates and standardized campaign finding;

5. UDU has recommended that instead of one president, the transitional government should be led by a team of four people (presidential commission) one each from the four regions of Uganda;

6. UDU has recommended that those wishing to participate in the governing of Uganda must go public and spell out their philosophy and personal history in a comprehensive manner so Ugandans can take informed decision.

As Secretary General of UDU, I have had discussions with leaders of FDC, UPC and Uganda Civil Society. We have concurred on the way forward as recommended by UDU. Other patriotic individuals at home and abroad have also been consulted and support this approach.

We call on all Ugandans and other peace loving people around the world especially the government and people of the United States of America and the United Kingdom to support these noble efforts to address the wrongs in Uganda without further delay.

For God and My Country

Eric Kashambuzi

Secretary General, United Democratic Ugandans (UDU)

 

UDU sends Condolences to the family, government and people of South Africa

On behalf of the United Democratic Ugandans (UDU), I extend our condolences to the family, relatives, friends, government and all the people of South Africa our condolences on the passing of President Nelson Mandela. President Mandela sacrificed everything to liberate South Africa from the apartheid regime. Through his wisdom, statesmanship and discipline he negotiated a settlement that has kept together a diverse country with many races.

May his soul rest in eternal peace

Eric Kashambuzi

Secretary General, UDU

UDU strengthening collaboration with opposition parties

As you know, UDU is an umbrella organization of political parties and organizations at home and abroad that are opposed to the misrule of Uganda by the NRM government.

The idea is to harmonize our views and speak with one voice for maximum efficiency and effectiveness. And this is already happening at the diplomatic level. We have a National Recovery Plan that spells out what would be done immediately a transitional government is formed after unseating the NRM regime which is losing support at home and abroad. Uganda delegation led by President Museveni was invisible in panel discussions at the current General Assembly session unlike in the past. In fact Uganda Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) are becoming more visible as panelists than government representatives.

We have also been engaged in civic education through the mass media such as on Radio Munansi, face book, Ugandans at Heart Forums, www.udugandans.org, www.kashambuzi.com and many other sites. The feedback we are getting is very encouraging.

As I reported a few months ago, I met with Ambassador Olara Otunnu in New York and agreed that UDU and UPC should work more closely than before. Last weekend, we arranged for him to address Ugandans on the English and Luganda programs of radio munansi and the response has been very good.

While he was in New York as part of his tour of North America, I had a conversation with the President of FDC General (retired) Mugisha Muntu. We discussed a wide range of issues affecting our country and the region. Like his predecessor, Col (retired) Dr. Besigye, Mugisha Muntu agreed that FDC will continue to work closely with UDU. FDC has been a very active member since the founding of UDU in July 2011. We shall arrange to have Mugisha Muntu address Ugandans through radio munansi like we have just done for Olara Otunnu.

We are also making contacts with DP officials to have them officially become part of UDU. DP supporters are already very active in the work of UDU.

Consensus is emerging that a transitional government of all Ugandans except those alleged to have committed crimes against humanity is the way forward to prepare for free and fair multi-party elections and possibly a national convention before elections.

The transitional government would be led by a presidential commission of five Ugandans drawn one each from Northern, Eastern, Buganda and Western regions as well as Greater Kampala. This has happened before in Uganda and in other places. In Russia after the death of Stalin, a committee was formed to govern the country until conditions were appropriate to elect the Secretary General of the Communist Party.

UDU is trying to lay a solid foundation in Uganda where everyone in present and future generations will have an opportunity to develop their potential to the fullest extent possible. We call on all Ugandans at home and abroad to join us in this noble endeavor.

Eric Kashambuzi

Secretary General, UDU

 

UDU and UPC have agreed to work together

Press release

During his current visit to the United States of America, the President of UPC Ambassador Olara A. Otunnu and Secretary General of UDU Eric Kashambuzi met twice in New York and discussed a wide range of issues regarding the deteriorating situation in Uganda and the draconian methods being used by NRM to cling to power.

I am pleased to announce that UDU and UPC have agreed to work together on themes of common interest, believing that two heads are better than one. For a start, we shall coordinate our activities on the electoral system with a focus on an independent electoral commission and standardization of campaign finance in order to level the playing field.

As soon as arrangements have been finalized, Ambassador Olara Otunnu will appear on the English program of Radio Munansi and address Ugandans on this working arrangement between UDU and UPC.

As you know, UDU and FDC have worked together since the founding of UDU in 2011. We have benefited tremendously from collaboration with Dr. Kiiza Besigye who continues to be active in Uganda politics and we shall continue to do so under the new leadership.

UDU has also had contacts with the President-General of DP, Nobert Mao and look forward to formalizing our working relationship in the near future.

Uganda has hit the bottom in all areas of human endeavor and is now described as a failed state. It will therefore require the efforts of all Ugandans at home and abroad including patriotic members of NRM to pull it out of the deep political, economic, social and environmental hole.

For God and My Country

Eric Kashambuzi

Secretary General, UDU

Uganda: Join hands and reject public order management law

Press statement

There are many cases that when Ugandans unite, we win. Here are some examples:

1. When Ugandans united behind the late Kabaka Mutesa II of Buganda, the colonial administration was forced to return him from exile in London. Uganda supported the Kabaka because he was doing the right thing for his people and indeed for the rest of Uganda because he refused to let Uganda enter the future East African federation at a disadvantage. Perhaps with his instructions, Baganda in Obote cabinet blocked a decision to join the East African federation that was scheduled for 1963. And that was the right thing because rushing into the federation would have created serious problems for Uganda which needed to put its house in order first.

2. When Ugandans united, we blocked Museveni efforts to destroy Mabira forest by giving it to foreign developers to grow sugar cane. He tried the second time and failed.

3. When Amama Mbabazi announced that peasants would lose their land to large scale farmers mostly foreigners since there aren’t many Ugandans with sufficient funds and expertise for large scale farming, Uganda objected. We told Amama Mbabazi that he had been misled to believe that large scale farmers are more productive than peasants. Scientific evidence shows that when properly facilitated, small scale farmers or peasants are more productive, more efficient, create more jobs and are more environmentally and socially friendly than large scale farmers. That is why the international community that is concerned about equity and sustainable development including the Group of 8 industrialized countries and the World Bank support small holder farmers. The bulk of the world’s food is produced by small scale farmers. Although he may not have given up the idea, Amama Mbabazi hasn’t mentioned “robbing Uganda peasants of their land to give it to large scale farmers”. Baganda peasants have reacted by demanding return of their land that has been grabbed by the rich especially in the Luwero Triangle since NRM came to power in 1986. Ugandans are also demanding that peasant land that is being pushed into expanded municipality with a hidden agenda to rob peasants of their land should be stopped and reversed.

4. When Ugandans united and rejected Museveni’s vision 2040 because it was hollow, it has died quietly.

Now is the time to unite again and defeat the public order management law. Museveni is becoming desperate and is behaving like a drowning man who grabs everything in his way to survive. The revelations that many people in Luwero Triangle were killed by NRA to discredit Obote regime and that NRA pushed one million Baganda into the forest apparently for safe keeping where many perished is haunting Museveni and he is getting worried about possible repercussions.

Museveni is also hearing stories about the formation of a transitional government in the near future to prepare a solid foundation for free and fair multi-party elections. Museveni is finding it difficult to stop non-violent resistance and non-cooperation with the government. The military means which he had counted on are not working because Ugandans have not given him the opportunity of destroying his real and imagined enemies by launching a military attack on NRM. That might explain why he is filling the police force with military generals hoping to use force from there to eliminate opponents under the public order management law.

Museveni’s abrupt signing of the MOU with Mengo administration which was preceded by a three hour meeting without a communiqué at the end of it and without central government officials in attendance could be designed to mobilize Baganda support to save his regime. The appointment of Katumba Wamala as Uganda’s army commander is part of this strategy. That could also explain why the two parties (central government and Mengo administration) agreed not to criticize each other, opening the door for Museveni to crash Baganda opposition without Mengo raising a finger in protest. This decision has been interpreted as the most unfortunate compromise in the history of bilateral negotiations. Baganda and indeed Ugandans and the entire world community should not accept such a deal and the MOU that gave rise to it.

Thus, the public order management law is designed to violate Ugandans right to assemble and to associate to bring down the NRM government peacefully which is acceptable globally. The law is violating article 29 of the Uganda constitution.

Article 29 (1) states in part that every person shall have the right and freedom:

(1) To assemble and to demonstrate together with others peacefully and unarmed;

(2) To associate which shall include the freedom to form and join associations or unions, including trade unions and political and other civic organizations.

The role of the police is not to give permission to assemble or to associate but to make sure that there are no disturbances. The police force doesn’t have to be at every gathering say on school campus for a public lecture or a wedding party.

Should NRM government violate the constitution and proceed with implementation of the public order management law, chances are Uganda may catch fire and explode into a human catastrophe. UDU which was constituted on the basis of achieving regime change by peaceful means is calling on the international community especially the Secretary General of the United Nations and development partners especially the United States of America and the United Kingdom to put pressure on NRM government not to enforce the law.

We call upon the United Nations Secretary-General in particular who has made prevention of conflict a principle goal of his administration when he addressed the United Nations General Assembly and said “It is well known that prevention is better and cheaper than cure. Focusing on preventing disasters and conflicts across all areas of our work – peace and security, promoting human rights and development – has the potential to save millions of lives and billions of dollars” to step forward and prevent a potential human catastrophe in Uganda if NRM government enforces the public order management law that the people of Uganda and some friends like Amnesty International have rejected.

What is happening in Uganda if we go by the media at home and abroad is reminiscent of what happened in Rwanda before the 1994 genocide. The world has thus been warned and must act before it is too late. It is now time to take preventive measures and “save millions of [Uganda] lives and billions of dollars”.

Let me conclude by re-stating that UDU is for everybody (those alleged to have a criminal record will be dealt with according to the laws of the land). It is an umbrella organization of political parties and organizations at home and abroad that advocates peaceful change of regime and protecting all the rights and freedoms of everyone whether in or out of NRM government and regardless of ethnicity, religion, region, gender and class. I have participated in these efforts not in pursuit of selfish popularity but to lay a foundation for lasting peace, security, stability, prosperity and happiness in Uganda.

Eric Kashambuzi

Secretary General, UDU

 

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