By Alex Muhumuza
To look at a recent article by one Duncan Abigaba, who goes over the top in obsequiously licking the boots of Museveni’s son Gen. Muhoozi Kainerugaba, is to realize that the shadowy “Muhoozi Project” is very real.
The minions are scrambling to position themselves well in time as “undyingly loyal” to “the anointed one”, no doubt envisaging plum seats on the gravy train. Abigaba – who self-identifies as a manager at Government Citizen Interaction Center, GCIC, Ministry of ICT and National Guidance – already is ambitiously elbowing his way to what he hopes will be a prime spot. This becomes obvious with his article, published in Chimpreports – one of the numerous propaganda websites under the control of Ugandan Military Intelligence, CMI – last Sunday, 29 March under the title: “Victoria Nyeko Misunderstood Gen. Muhoozi Kainerugaba.”
Nyeko is a Ugandan that – upset by Muhoozi’s habit of writing belligerent tweets threatening enemies he never names – had a letter published in the Daily Monitor reacting to another of Muhoozi’s tweets, this one sent out Thursday last week. Above a photograph of a younger Museveni in military attire in a bush setting, the tweet said: “Gen. Yoweri Museveni, the most successful revolutionary in African history. I pity those who think they can defeat him.”
Ms. Nyeko expressed unhappiness that someone in Muhoozi’s position would think it appropriate to send out a message like that in these difficult times, writing: “Gen. Muhoozi, COVID-19 is the enemy we should be threatening now.” She proceeded to characterize Gen. Muhoozi’s tweet as bizarre, and disoriented at a time when everyone is trying to fight a global pandemic.
Going by the reactions on Muhoozi’s Twitter timeline it is obvious the public was far more aligned with Victoria Nyeko’s thoughts than with Muhoozi’s minions. To get the picture, here are a few replies to Muhoozi’s tweet: “Gen. are you under quarantine? This is idleness!”, said one Tadeo Kakooza. “Childish nonsense”, exclaimed one Kabalagala Gonja. “Daddy’s boy bambi, don’t be shy when they call u genetically modified general”, this from the account of a certain John Mugisha. Or this one that made a funny comparison: “When I was still young, I used to reason like you, that nobody can defeat my dad, but one day a small man in our village gave him a knockout in front of me, that’s when I knew bragging is bad!”
In short Muhoozi had once again reduced himself to a public laughing stock. The few tweets in his support were of the usual individuals looking for attention.
To mitigate the damage Duncan Abigaba then went to Chimpreports, to attack Nyeko from there. “The argument that Victoria was trying to put forward is to the effect that Muhoozi had no right to boast about Uganda’s military capacity under the stewardship of Gen. Museveni,” writes Abigaba.
He then pivots, to doing something the minions of the Ugandan regime never tire of. Abigaba parrots the talking points of the regime’s leadership in its propagandistic purposes of distorting, or rewriting history to try to turn Museveni into some kind of “grand regional liberator”, and one that “everyone should forever be grateful for!
“President Museveni has over the last five decades defeated Idi Amin, he defeated Obote, he defeated Kony and many more internal insurgencies, and indeed because of his revolutionary and Pan-Africanist character he ‘exported peace to Rwanda in the 1990s’ (a sacrifice Rwandan leaders have greatly abused), South Sudan, Central African Republic and Somalia to mention but a few.” Abigaba was not wasting his chance to say the same thing as Muhoozi’s tweet, but in extended form!
There is so much outright Kampala-regime propagandist distortions in just this one paragraph that even Joseph Goebbels would be proud to hire Duncan Abigaba.
When the man for instance writes that Museveni defeated Idi Amin, does he think everyone has forgotten that this was the actual work of the late, revered Tanzanian leader Julius Nyerere? One actually would be justified in asking Abigaba what he was smoking when he wrote that blatant lie. It is in a similar manner that he hands Museveni credit for liberating Rwanda.
Other people fought their war; a very difficult one for which they paid a heavy human cost, but the Ugandan president must get praise for that! The Ugandan president’s minions have been great students of his.
The Ugandan ruler, even during his own bush war in the early to mid Eighties against Obote, had a reputation for boastfully claiming victory for battles that happened in any of his long absences from the frontline. One of Museveni’s greatest talents was manipulation – always ensuring it was others exposed to fire while he was safely away, many a veteran of his NRA guerrillas has said.
Sometimes he would be in Nairobi. Most times he would just be relaxing in Europe.
Another thing that he and his minion never mention is that the majority of Museveni’s initial guerrilla fighting force were young Banyarwanda men and women. They joined the NRA in big numbers after the regime of former president Milton Obote took to persecuting their parents and them; killing and jailing them in pogroms; and, in an infamous incident in the early Eighties, driving thousands of Rwandan families to the border with Rwanda to dump them there.
Historians, notably Mahmood Mamdani, have detailed the very important role; the sacrifices in blood that the young Banyarwanda of NRA played in defeating first Obote, and then Tito Okello – the events that carried Museveni to power. Many also know the role the Banyarwanda soldiers played in the decisive defeat of rebel leader Alice Lakwena.
The revisionists in Kampala never bring such history up, as it would negate the narrative of their “dear leader” as the “hero of Africa.”
On its part, the Rwandan leadership has always expressed its gratitude for Museveni’s during the war to liberate their own country, assisting with logistics in the rear bases for instance. This however can’t mean the Ugandan ruler fought Rwanda’s war, as they did his wars. Many point out: “If Museveni were a more humble, honest person he on his part would acknowledge the role of those very Rwandans in bringing him to power where he has been for the past 34 years. He would acknowledge their efforts and sacrifices much more!”
Instead Museveni and his regime have from the 90s been far more bent on destabilizing Rwanda, through use of different proxy, terrorist groups down the years – mainly Kayumba Nyamwasa’s RNC, but later others like FDLR, FDLR-Urunana, and others. The Kampala regime’s policy of hostility, instituted as part of the strategy to aid the activities of RNC, has included ongoing persecution of Rwandans with arbitrary arrests, illegal detention incommunicado, and torture in the dungeons and “safe houses” of the country’s security organs.
Such acts are not lost to observers of the process to implement the Luanda MoU, signed by both presidents Kagame and Museveni last year as part of mediation efforts to normalize relations between Kampala and Kigali. The hostility against Rwanda, and the abuses of the rights of Rwandan citizens more than anything belie the Ugandan ruler’s claims to be a “Pan-Africanist”.
Many find it laughable, like exiled, veteran Ugandan opposition leader Aggrey Kiyingi. “To see someone whose regime is the biggest aggressor of other countries in the region adapting the Pan-Africanist mantle is so laughable! What kind of joke is that!”, snorted Kiyingi.
Apparently it is another lie that’s not too big to be avoided by the minions in Kampala.