• Mon Jan 29 2018
  • Today in history: Museveni sworn in as president

On this day 32 years go.
Journalist @ New vision
On this day 32 years ago, newly sworn-in President Museveni told a large crowd outside the Parliament that he would return democracy.


JANUARY 29, 1986:

KAMPALA - Yoweri Museveni was sworn in as president on January 29, 1986 and called the transition at the helm as "not a mere change of guard", but rather "a fundamental change".

He told a large crowd at the Parliament in Kampala that he would return democracy.

One of the most sticking points in Museveni's government plan was democracy.

"The first point in our programme is the restoration of democracy. The people of Africa and the people of Uganda are entitled to democratic government. It is not a favour from any government: it is the right of the people of Africa to have democratic government. The sovereign power in the land must be the population, not the Government.

"The Government should not be the master, but the servant of the people. The first thing we started with was the election of village resistance /committees. My mother, for instance, cannot go to Parliament, but she can, surely, become a member of a committee so that she, too, can make her views heard. We have, therefore, set up village, muluka, gombolola and district committees," the newly sworn-in leader said.

The National Resistance Army (NRA), which Museveni led during what they termed as the liberation war, managed to fight its way into Kampala and take power on January 26, 1986.

Three days later, Museveni, with folded shirt sleeves and a Bible in one hand, took oath of office.

After being sworn to thunderous applause, he said: "Nobody should think what is happening today or what has been happening in the last few days, is a mere change of guard. It is not a mere change of guard. I think this is a fundamental change in the politics of our country.

"[It is] because in Africa, we have seen so much change that change has become meaningless.It is no longer change, but merely turmoil. This group getting rid of that group, and that group doing worse than the group it got rid of. Now, please do not count us in that category of people.

"The National Resistance Movement (NRM), I think, is a clear-headed movement, with clear objectives and with good membership. I think it makes a very big difference from the situation in which we were, where the very people in power were they, themselves, encouraging evil instead of trying to combat evil. I think this is a slightly diffrent situation," he said.