LRA should seek pardon, not rewards

By Vision Reporter

The LRA negotiators have shown their true colours. According to the latest document they submitted in Juba, they demand five key ministries, five ambassador positions, two commissioners and 20 senior positions in government departments.

The LRA negotiators have shown their true colours. According to the latest document they submitted in Juba, they demand five key ministries, five ambassador positions, two commissioners and 20 senior positions in government departments.

They also want the Government to sponsor yearly 50 children from each of the affected districts at university level, of which five are nominated by them.

They further demand that the Government facilitates and finances the return of political leaders of the LRA and any member of the negotiation team currently living abroad, and protects them from prosecution or victimisation.

In addition, they want to be given a “golden handshake in cash and kind in recognition of all the LRA delegates and their efforts in brokering peace”.

With their latest list of demands, the LRA negotiators have revealed their real motives. They want to get off the hook for the over 20 years they financed and sustained the LRA terror.

They want to return to Uganda in a position of power and be given enough money to sustain them and their families for the rest of their lives.

Indeed, it is now clear that their rebellion had nothing to do with defending the rights of the people of northern Uganda.

Theirs was merely a struggle for self-enrichment and easy money of some unemployed and rancorous Acholi in the Diaspora, in which terror was used as a tool for blackmail.

To the millions of Ugandans who struggle every day to make ends meet, the overriding question is: What for? What have the LRA negotiators done to deserve what they are demanding?

Should they be rewarded for the two decades of suffering and economic drain they caused the country?

More fundamentally, the LRA negotiators should realise that the Uganda today is not the Uganda they left 20 years ago.

Uganda is ruled by a constitution, by laws, rules and procedures for political power and distribution of wealth.

To get political power, you need to be elected by the people of Uganda, and re-elected every five years. To get money, you need to work. And to get acquitted, you need to go through a court system.

LRA should seek pardon, not rewards