Ugandan President ready to hand over power peacefully if he loses 2016 election

November 20, 2015 OPINION/NEWS

By

Gloria Nakiyimba

Uganda’s incumbent Yoweri Kagutta Museveni says he is ready to hand over power peacefully if he loses the election.

Addressing a press conference at a State lodge in the West Nile district of Arua on Thursday, Museveni, the National Resistance Movement (NRM) party presidential candidate said he would retire to his country home in Rwakitura in western Uganda and look after his cattle if he did not win the February 2016 presidential poll.

“How will I be in power if I lose the election? Obviously if I lose the election, I have got my job at home. I am a cattle keeper you know that” he said.

Mr Museveni also dismissed as untrue allegations that he cannot win in a free and fair election because Uganda’s electoral commission is biased and has been rigging the votes in his favour.

“If the Electoral Commission is biased and is rigging for me, how is it that I lose in many constituencies? Here in West Nile I was losing until the last election; that’s when we won. In some parts of the central north we were losing until recently; that’s when we won. The fact that we lose in some constituencies means that this electoral commission is fair” he said.

He noted that he has won elections on four occasions, in 1996, 2001, 2006 and 2011.

He was however quick to accuse the opposition of rigging.

“If there is any rigging actually it’s done by the opposition, utilising a lack of vigilance by us, by our side when we are not vigilant” he noted.

He scoffed at people saying that he is overstaying in power because he is power hungry, but instead said he has missions to do.

“I am mission hungry; I have got missions to do. This is why I am in politics. I am not looking for a job, I am not looking for money. But the missions must be done. East Africa must unite to form the East African Federation. We have already formed the East African community, but we must form the federation, and if I can contribute to that, I will. Nobody can intimidate me out of that” he said.

He said another of his missions is to ensure that Uganda is peaceful, attacking opposition leader and his main challenger retired Colonel Dr Warren Kiiza Besigye of the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) Party for abandoning the ship.

“When people like Besigye run away, at that time the whole of the north was still being disturbed by war, by Kony, the cattle rustlers in Karamoja were still killing people, there was still ADF in the Rwenzori Mountains. We have now cleared all that without Besigye. Besigye wanted us to leave all that uncleared” he told the media.

He said Uganda is now very peaceful without Besigye’s contribution and in spite of his obstruction.

The 71 year old leader informed media that he is willing to retire once he clocks the mandatory age of 75 years. He said the constitution of Uganda requires a civil servant to retire at 75 years of age and will respect that.

Museveni has been combing the West Nile region for votes as he continues with the campaign trail to sell his candidature and convince Ugandans to vote for him on the 18th of February next year. He was speaking at the conclusion of a five day campaign trail in the region.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gloria Nakiyimba

Gloria has experience spanning more than five years in Journalism, particularly in field reporting, editing, newscasting and management. She is currently working with Capital Radio Limited [91.3 Capital FM and 96.8 Beat FM] as Head of News, a position she has held since 2010.

Gloria previously worked as the Kampala Correspondent for Radio France International [RFI] generating local story leads with international inference for RFI’s global audience. She also served as Political Editor for The Weekly Mail Newspaper as well as Online Content Editor for the California based Ugandan broadcaster KubutakaRadio.com.

 

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