By Nesta Katushabe
I join the human rights Movement to mourn the death of Corretta Scott King, wife to the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. She quietly slipped away but left a legacy that will forever stand.
Corretta turned a life that was shattered by her husbandâ€™s assassination into one devoted to enshrining his legacy of human rights and equality. A devoted mother to her four children, she also authored a book, My Life With Martin Luther King Jr, and in 1969 founded the multimillion dollar Martin Luther King Jr Centre for Non-violent Social Change. She saw to it that the centre became deeply involved in the issues that breed violence such as hunger, unemployment voting rights and racism.
In the First lady Janet Museveni we have our own Corretta Scott King. She has played a big role in developing Uganda and founded many NGOs that help the needy, orphans and widows. Notable among these are UWESO and Uganda Youth Forum and through them she has organised projects that have fed, clothed and educated the orphans.
The widows have acquired skills counselling and assistance to make them self reliant. Her youth projects have promoted abstinence as a way of curbing the AIDS pandemic in Uganda and uplifting moral standards. Undeterred by her critics, Janet Museveni recently decided to leave walking in her husbands shadow and enter the muddy waters of politics. In her own words, she was sent by God to represent the people of Ruhaama in the next Parliament. Her religious statements made a Pandora box as some people wondered why God speaks to particular individuals.
A few days after the death of Martin Luther King Jr, Corretta King said, â€œI think the Lord gives you strength when you need it. God was using us and now heâ€™s using me too.â€ To Janet Museveni, I believe that the Lord is using you too.
Statements such as what Paul Ssemogerere said during a rally in Ntungamo that the First Lady should go and cook for her husband are not only unfortunate but also portray how much value he places on womanâ€™s role in society. Janet Museveni has excelled as a mother, a grand mother, an entrepreneur and a First Lady. She could have chosen to merely accompany her husband to state functions like the previous First Ladies. Her decision to join politics should be applauded by Ugandans especially the people of Ruhaama in Ntungamo.