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Saturday,November 28,2020 17:24 PM

Besigye's startling view on aspirants

By Vision Reporter

Added 25th November 2000 03:00 AM

* If we wanted to comment on each other's health, I would be better placed because I was Museveni's doctor for many years

* If we wanted to comment on each other's health, I would be better placed because I was Museveni's doctor for many years

* If we wanted to comment on each other's health, I would be better placed because I was Museveni's doctor for many years SORRY; but it is this column's unpleasant duty to bring up yet again the subject of Dr Kiiza Besigye.This week he came up with the startling announcement that all presidential candidates should undergo various medical tests, including those for AIDS, before they could be nominated. Whether such tests would also look into, say, whooping cough or ingrowing toenails, he did not clarify. No doubt he or his equally ubiquitous missus will furnish a list. (If she has recovered from the dreadful news, knowing her views on the matter, that first ladies from Africa, Europe, the Middle East and Asia are gathered this week in Senegal to discuss the emancipation of women and their world-wide struggle for property and other rights.) This column believes strongly that people's private diseases are a matter only for them, unless of course they want to go public. In the case of the dreaded Ebola, with its highly contagious nature, it becomes a different matter. With AIDS, which seems to particularly worry Besigye, unless you were going to pass it on to unsuspecting victims, broadcast to fellow citizens would not appear to be necessary. In many cases anyway, they can guess for themselves. However, I know of no law that can stop anyone, including a presidential candidate, from being tested and telling us the result. So Besigye should feel free. If you have a mental disease, are of unsound mind, mad, then you are automatically disqualified. Is this what Besigye has in mind? But in his case anyway there is something else which automatically disqualifies him, especially in his medical fraternity; but also to any right thinking citizen. When asked about his Aids status on WBS radio, he replied, "If we wanted to comment on one another's health, I would be better placed because I was Museveni's doctor for many years." Is it not obvious what Besigye is insinuating here? And in any case, do medical ethics allow him to discuss a patient publicly? Has he heard of the Hippocratic Oath? It has been around for two-and-a-half millennia. And this is the man who wants to stand for president of our great country? * * * Former Premier George Cosmas Adyebo MP died at the weekend, at the ridiculously early age of 53. Every word we have heard about him during the week has emphasised his qualities of straightforwardness, straight talking and interest in development of all kinds. "He was a hardworking and open minded person," MP Omara Atubo said. The President called him a pillar of the Movement in Lango. "He persuaded and encouraged his people to support the Movement Government to work for peace and development." And added that he was a clean politician at the forefront in the fight against graft. In Thursday's Vision there was a particularly poignant picture of a sorrowful Museveni with his hand on the head of Adyebo's little girl. When Adyebo was announced Prime Minister in January 1991 it came like a bolt out of the blue. Most people had never even heard of him, myself included. Why had the President in his wisdom settled on this relative unknown? At the funeral service he said that he had wanted a Catholic and a northerner. When his term of office ended and he was replaced by Kintu Musoke, he was said to have been deeply unhappy at first. But he soon recovered his geniality and continued to serve the Movement, his region and his country to the very end. By coincidence I spoke to Vice Chancellor John Sebuwufu the day before the funeral. It turned out they had known each other closely from boyhood days at Namilyango, where the two shared a cubicle, the third one being Fred Mukisa of Fisheries. Sebuwufu, apart from extolling his tremendous football skills, said that with Adyebo you never noticed that he came from a region different from yours. I came face to face with him only the once, and his had a look of total exasperation on it. It was during my one and only and ill-judged attempt at music promotion in this country. Talk about a fish out of water! The singer was Tabu Ley, of whom I had never heard. I only did it to help my brother Jim. It cost me. Adyebo had paid for six tickets. After waiting for more than two hours without hearing so much as the twang of a guitar, he gave the promoter a piece of his mind. If anybody crosses him where he has gone, be sure they'll get the same. May he rest in peace. * * * Sometime ago I advised the Army Commander Jeje Odong, after he had been outfoxed by the Rwandese during a Report on Kisangani, to fall on his sword. What goes round comes round, and I now find myself in the same position. Jeje get your sword and I'll get mine! In my case I seem to have been gulled by a combination of a Sierra Leoneian and a Cornishman (a person from Cornwall in the United Kingdom). Neither place is famed for having particularly bright people, which makes it worse. It is all to do with an interview I arranged for them with the president. I haven't seen it yet, but first reports are disturbing. I'll wait for the cassette and you will be the first to know. Oh dear, oh dear! My only cheer has been to hear that Bamwoze and Awori (so well-matched) are to work together, after all. Ends.

Besigye's startling view on aspirants

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