By Francis Emorut and Darius Magara
The Government will deal decisively with politicians who want to mount protests as the country marks its independence jubilee, the Prime Minister, Amama Mbabazi, has warned.
“There is, however, a lawless fringe that shares those erroneous views and continues in futility to attempt to enact the “Arab Spring” here. The Government will continue dealing very firmly with that fringe. We shall not permit them to spurn anarchy in Uganda,” Mbabazi said.
Activists for change known as 4GC (For God and My Country) have threatened to demonstrate on the streets against what they called corruption and poor governance using the slogan “walk to freedom.”
Mbabazi criticised the political class and the elite for being handicapped in ideology and having philosophical disorientation as far as governance issues are concerned.
He said the group is looking for individual acts and events which supposedly create democracy but are blind to the historical processes.
He said democracy is nurtured day-by-day.
“Democratic and constitutional governments are nurtured, watered and grown day-by-day. Consensus is built and developed day-by-day. There is no enduring democratic government in the world where this has not been the case,” he said.
Mbabazi was speaking at the opening of a conference for religious leaders at Hotel Africana in Kampala yesterday.
The conference was organised by the Inter-Religious Council of Uganda.
The premier warned the opposition politicians not to pre-occupy themselves with governance issues only but focus on national development.
“We must decisively switch our focus to an all-encompassing national development policy framework, mindful of the defining relationship between the economics of society on the one hand and the political and spiritual life of society on the other,” he said.
Mbabazi also criticised retired bishop Zac Niringiye for crusading about the lifting of presidential term limits, saying that was not an issue but leadership was the problem.
“I don’t agree with this position. Africa’s greatest problem in centuries has been a problem of leadership. Otherwise, how do you explain what befell our own ancestors. Why were we enslaved and colonised? Why did we fail to govern ourselves after independence?” he asked.
He observed that the whole problem rotates around leadership.
Niringiye, who was seated at the back, retorted that leaders who overstay in power and leaders who are corrupt were the problem.
Mbabazi who was in a jovial mood later hugged Niringiye.