Let me state that no leader of Uganda has not been with advantages and disadvantages. Even Obote whom we condemn so much, elevated Muslim from class D where the British had condemned us to class C. After 1967, Muslims became saza chiefs in Buganda other than BUTAMBALA alone. We had a Muslim Pookino. Even when Buddu was divided into several counties for many years the chief OF Kalungu was a Muslim. Chairperson of Public Service Commission Abduallah Anyuru was a Muslim. He was later killed on orders of Idi Amin. We had ministers like Shaban Nkutu and Barinda. Prior to 1965 formation of NAAM under Obote’s patronage, Islam was a Ganda affair. But a national organisation was set up which laid ground for formation of Uganda Muslim Supreme Council in 1972.
As for Amin, he represented the subalterns or down trodden with a chance of little western formal education where many of us have gone but have not even produced a needle. Read Kirunda Kivejinja who analysed the real class Amin represented including muslims who have been denied education,and political and civil service appointments. Despite his excesses where the victims included even my family, Amin benefited Muslims and no government has ever benefited them that way. Although the majority were Nubians and Sudanese, they were Muslims. That’s why when he died, Muslims organised funeral prayers and duwa after 40 years. Even Tablighs like Abbas Kiyimba, Imam Iddi Kasozi, attended.
As a Muganda, think about Obote ruling uninterrupted until his death! That would have been the worse. Amin weakened Obote that was why it was easy for NRM/NRA to sweep away the entire system.
Let me reiterate my position, no leader is entirely bad even if we have to remove him. Even despotic Kabakas like Kagulu Tbucwereke whom the masses deposed and Kiweewa and Kalema who reigh=ned when the legitimate Mwanga was still around, have their good part.
Uganda would not have been a member of OIC hadn’t Amin registered it in 1974, and International Islamic University in Uganda for Anglo- Phone would not have been stationed in Arua, Mbale, Kibuli and Kabojja.
Yes Amin was bad and ugly and he had to be fought, originally he was a stooge of CIA, Mossad, M15 etc… but he turned into a nationalist and Pan Africanist, but also with excesses as the rest if his contemporaries like Mengistu Haile Mariam.The point was that Amin, just like Obote, are not entirely bad. They had their good side and their crisis aka revolutions may have ended nepotism in Uganda. However tribalism was still active. We should not condemn them wholly. However they should also have apologised for their excesses.
Have you ever heard me condemning Adolf Hitler as an entirely bad person? Don’t l know that World War l contributed to the decolonization process? Please l am not among those who think that Hitler was entirely bad but l disagree with Fascism be NAZI , Mussolini’s, Emperor’s Franco’s, Portuguese or UPC.
Both World War 1 and ll contributed to the decolonization process. In the former Ugandans were divided between loyalists led by Sir Daudi Chwa ll and his brother Lt. Musanje, who participated on the side of the British and their allies, and resisters led by Gabriel Kintu, who crossed to German East Africa and fought on the side of the Germans and their allies. Had the latter won, the future of Uganda would have been complex as Apollo Kaggwa and a team of colonial chiefs would have been deposed. Chwa would have been spared because he was a true son of Mwanga, and on reaching majority age, he disagreed with his former regents.
Since Egypt was un the Turko-Ottoman Empire, and the Sudan was Anglo-Egyptian, and both had an interest in Uganda, the situation would have been complex. Even Ugandan nationalists used to listen to the German radio. Go and ask Godfrey Lukongwa binaisa.
Buganda was the most advanced but even others were involved in both world wars .That is why we had veterans all over the country. Unlike elsewhere like Acholi where veterans like Tito Okello were retained in the army, in Uganda, veterans like Ben Kiwanuka were not. However that helped them to pursue other careers. Ben, who was a Court Clerk, went for law in South Africa and United Kingdom. These veterans were involved in 1945 and 1949 riots in Buganda and Uganda generally and in Mau Mau uprising in Kenya . But the colonial masters fought them left, right and centre, handed over instruments of power to colonial agents like Mitlon Obote. Yes Buganda could overlap, but others were also active.
But for my part, l can only say that those going to Kimaka and elsewhere for military training, at least l read in papers or view on T.V. or listen on radio, cut across. l remember my old friend Col. Fred Boogere was in Kenya Defence College before Kulayigye went there. Boogere wanted to retire but was not allowed. He is still in active service.
The good thing with Museveni and NRM/NRA is mass military training. No tribe, clan, family, sub tribe, religion, region, can monopolise political/military power in Uganda as it was the case in the past. The rest of the country will sweep them away as wild bush fire. No tribe can monopolise political/military power. It should have been the majority tribe, the Baganda. But they become a minority if the rest gang up against it and it has been before. So for others, it was only temporary because “tebamalaako,” be Luo, Sudanic. There was fear that Bantu Southerners, or Westerners, or South Westerners, , or Banyankore, or Bahima would not monopolise power. They can’t since the rest are the majority. Even if it can happen, it has to be temporary since the rest will gang up against them.
By the way, having one individual or two of the President’s relatives in government or army does not mean clan monopoly. Even you saw that almost all Nyerere’s sons were in TPDF and that one was a Mkombozi who spent two years in Uganda . But they were not noticed. Nyerere and Msuguri were village mates, but Nyerree did not use Msuguri to overthrow constitutions. Hadn’t Obote misused Amin and the Okellos, nobody was bothered with Northern domination of the military. Even if UPDF is Western dominated, (but that may be among Historicals but the faces l see are more from the east and the north as Baganda and Banyankore shy away due to low salaries), if it does not harass the population, people may not be bothered so much.
Ahmed Katerega Musaazi