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Museveni deviated from what we fought for, says Besigye

By Moses Walubiri

Added 31st December 2015 10:25 AM

A dysfunctional state that is responsible for problems Ugandans are facing

Besigye 703x422

Dr. Kizza Besigye campaigns in Koboko. Photo by Nicholas Oneal

A dysfunctional state that is responsible for problems Ugandans are facing

The presidential flag bearer of the opposition Forum for Democratic Change (FDC), Dr. Kiiza Besigye, says that he disagreed with President Yoweri Museveni after the National Resistance Movement deviated from the principles they fought for.

Besigye told his supporters that the NRM "he is seriously opposing" has long deviated from the core principles that saw him join the guerilla war that brought it to power 30 years ago.

Besigye accused President Museveni of running Uganda like "a family enterprise", an arrangement he claims is benefiting a small section of people who are prospering while the rest of Ugandans "sink further into dehumanizing poverty."

Besigye who is set to take his fourth shot at the presidency next year contends that the current political establishment is iniquitous and responsible for what he avers is "a dysfunctional state that is responsible for problems Ugandans are facing."

Attempts to get a comment from government spokesperson, Ofwono Opondo, about Besigye's comments yesterday were fruitless.

Besigye also contends that Museveni's 30 years in power notwithstanding, he "is on shaky ground" especially in Northern Uganda - a region whose development he claims the NRM has ignored.

Besigye says Museveni's three decades in power have ruined the country and that it's inconceivable that Ugandans who are bearing the brunt of his bad governance still support him.  Besigye wondered why Museveni is heavily guarded if he is so popular.

Throughout his campaigns in the Greater North, Besigye has played the poverty card, telling his supporters that despite poverty being a big problem in all parts of the country, the region is the real epicenter of poverty.

To underscore his claim of NRM ignoring the development of Northern Uganda, Besigye cited the example of the railway line to Pakwach which he says has been overrun by bush under NRM's watch.

"When NRM came to power in 1986, one could travel by train from Mombasa to Pakwach. Instead of extending the railway line, NRM has left this infrastructure to go to waste and now what used to be the railway line is a bush," Besigye, clad in a white shirt said. 

"Even the little development that has come in the region lately is because of  our pressure," Besigye, who had Arua woman MP, Christine Abia and Terego County MP, Kassiano Wadri said.

FDC is trying to regain ground in Northern Uganda which it lost to NRM in the previous elections particularly after the end of the insurgency.

The end of the civil war and its attendant effects like internally displaced camps that had always given the opposition ammunition has fundamentally changed the political landscape, requiring a different political message.

Besigye is among the eight candidates contesting in the 2016 presidential elections. Other candidates include President Museveni, former premier Amama Mbabazi, Major General Benon Biraro, Dr Abed Bwanunika, Joseph Mabirizi, Prof. Venansius Baryamureeba and Maureen Walube Kyalya, the only female candidate in the rigorous race.

This is fourth time Besigye is contesting in the presidential elections and so far opinion polls show he is the strongest opposition candidate, but still trailing the incumbent. 

"When NRM came to power in 1986, one could travel by train from Mombasa to Pakwach. Instead of extending the railway line, NRM has left this infrastructure to go to waste and now what used to be the railway line is a bush," Besigye, clad in a white shirt said.

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