The parting of ways of President Yoweri Museveni and his former confidant, erstwhile closest political ally and friend for over forty years has left the NRM government and the leader naked. What Ugandans are witnessing is just a tip of the ice berg, with more drama yet to come, according to Charles Rwomushana, a longtime NRM strategist now media critic. To understand why Mbabazi is a big pain in Present Museveni’s feet, one has to critically look at these factors, argues Rwomushana.
Tight marking Mbabazi
Ever since Amama Mbabazi fell from grace to grass he has been tight-marked so much so that he is treated like an enemy of the state. And this is no mistake. One source who prefers anonymity, letting Mbabazi to talk to people freely and canvass support freely can lead to a political tsunami which President Museveni and his cabinet are not prepared for. In fact, painting Mbabazi as the number one enemy of the state has temporary worked for Museveni given that most people feel intimidated to openly associate with him. Having been at the centre of things in the NRM government for almost 30 years, Mbabazi has the capacity, if left free, to disorganize NRM and President Museveni.
Coup at Kyadondo
At the seat of NRM at plot 10 Kyadondo road, things are not any better. The young breed now steering the party, are said to be hatching a plot to weed out the old guards whom they believe have worked with Mbabazi and have a soft spot for him. Some of these old guards are easy to weed out given that they are not rich. And this explains why Al-haji Abdul Nadduli of the vice chairperson for Buganda in NRM is already crying foul as he castigates the party for using and dumping people. He is not alonethough. Former Agriculture Minister and in-law to Mbabazi, Hope Mwesigye has in the past said the same.
Mbabazi boys go independent
According to Dennis Obita and Wenani Kenneth, all former student leaders with Uganda National Students Association, UNSA, many of Mbabazi fans and supporters have decided to run as independents. Dennis Obita is going for youth northern Uganda while Wenani is going for youth eastern Uganda. Other budding politicians staking their necks include Justus Nsimaruhanga who is taking on presidency minister Frank Tumwebaze and Brian Ainembabazi who is taking on General Kahinda Otafiire. A good number of NRM cadres concur with Mbababzi that the party has been turned into a club of the rich yet NRM, citing the introduction of nomination fees as a needless obstacle.
NRM primaries this time round are tricky in that some of the casualties might end up joining the Mbabazi bandwagon of running as independents. Dr Tanga Odoi and his team have an uphill task in ensuring a free and fair electoral process if they are to guard against disintegration of the party, according to Twahika Dennis, a Parliamentary hopeful for Ishaka- Bushenyi municipality.
Ambassador Matayo Kyaligonza is one of the casualties of what some analysts are terming as the extension of the Museveni dynasty. With the entry into politics, of Odrek Rwabogo, President Yoweri Museveni’s Son in Law, chances are high that he will easily win and thus become the defacto chairperson and leader of the party. Other members of the first family who are eyeing top NRM positions are Lt Col Bright Rwamirama who is taking on Maj Gen Jim Muhwezi for the chairperson of the veterans’ league and Rukari who was the best man when Geofrey Kamuntu was wedding Museveni’s last daughter Diana.
Mbabazi’s silent attacks
President Museveni’s adviser on media Tamale Mirundi argues that ever since he started attacking Mbabazi he has been getting problems one after another adding that the former premier has a way of fighting his targets without them knowing. In fact even those that were vocal in pushing him out of NRM like Al-haji Nadduli, Maj Gen. Matayo Kyaligonza are already having problems in the party.
However Ofwono Opondo says that Mbabazi is a spent force who has little impact. He adds that he is like a drowning man seeking attention and that he cannot survive minus his mentor and friend President Yoweri Museveni