WHENEVER there are elections in Uganda, there is always chaos and loss of life. Even party elections for flag-bearers, such as the recent NRM primaries, are always marred by violence. There is in-fighting in many of our parties, which many Ugandans attribute to tribal politics.
Tribal politics should be discarded if Uganda is to become fully democratised, achieve political stability and pursue economic development. Ugandans need to unite and work together for the development of the nation. They can only do this if they stop looking at themselves as people of a certain tribe and start looking at themselves as Ugandans.
The Government should know that before the general elections next year, Uganda needs a mechanism in place that will hold the country together. This mechanism should be relevant to the country, whether the NRM Government stays in power or not.
It should also promote democracy in addition to minimising the election phobia and political discontent among the citizens.
The current situation in the country, which is characterised by in-fighting in almost all political parties and a weak opposition, should guide the Government in finding a solution to sustainable peace, security and development in the country.
The Government should also assess its strengths and weaknesses and find a way of serving the people better.
Taking an example of the US. Although it has people from different backgrounds, the people always look at themselves as Americans before anything else. Americans have a high sense of nationalism and they all put their country first. This is what has made the US cohesive and stable for many years.
On the other hand, many Africans, for example us Ugandans, lack nationalism. Many people vote for a leader, not because he or she is capable, but because he or she comes from a certain tribe.
I appeal to Ugandans to start loving their country and not the political leaders in power.
The writer is a student of Kampala International University
Let us promote democracy, nationalism