BUNDIBUGYO – Dr Kizza Besigye has sworn in a number of leaders in Rwenzori under his People’s Government and vowed to stop the NRM from infiltrating the region that has traditionally been a stronghold of the opposition.
Speaking at the ceremony in Bundibugyo District on Tuesday, August 27, Dr Besigye, who was franked by several FDC leaders, including party president Patrick Amuriat, urged o the people to understand the objectives and mission of their liberation struggle, focusing on the role of the regional, district and Local Council assemblies.
“These assemblies are the most critical in offering leadership for the struggle in this region. Your role is ensure that whatever is afflicting our people must be projected by your leadership and solutions found. People are affected by so many issues like land grabbing, bad roads, harassment; and therefore you need to help people find solutions where they are incapable. You have been sufficiently empowered and what happens going forward, it will entirely depend on what you do. The struggle takes extreme sacrifice to reach what is desirable for us,” Dr Besigye said.
He said the struggle is to liberate the people and change their lives for good. Referring to the state of social services under the NRM, Dr Besigye said: “If Mr Museveni had studied in this period, he would never have gone to school. Museveni’s father would never afford millions parents pay today, to take his son to school. How many of you in this place can afford to pay for children at University today?” he said.
“We have failed in health research, treatment and/or prevention of diseases. People are dying from cancer, malaria and other preventable diseases,” he added.
He wondered why some Ugandans are privileged are go to India, German, South Africa for treatment, and yet majority Ugandans who pay taxes are left to survive on the services of the ailing health system.
Dr Besigye said the struggle underway is for survival but to change people’s overall wellbeing.
“You must first have people who are strong, healthy and intelligent to be able to have people to use effectively and effeciently the few available resources,” he said.
Dr Besigye, however, is concerned that people have been grossly abused and subjugated to a point where they “either fear change or look to their tormentors for favours or solutions to their problems.”
This state of mindset, he said, has been influenced by the “state of fear (intimidation); money (buying off opponents); misinformation (Propaganda) and divide and Rule of Junta opponents.”
“Similar tactics”, Besigye said “have been used against the people Rwenzururu. The Banya Rwenzururu were one people, who even fought wars of liberation from Tooro, but they have now incited by the Junta to fight against themselves!”
“The process of getting freedom from those who control us by force is what we need to understand. I have heard some of you saying they candidates but throwing a piece paper in the ballot box will not free you.
Dr Besigye asked: “who controls ballot papers you use to vote? Who owns and controls the ballot box where you drop the ballot papers? Who counts the votes? Who declares the winner?
“In 2016, I defeated Mr. Museveni but I was not announced (declared winner). I knew I would not be declared winner so I decided to announce myself. Please be strong, work hard and I know we shall succeed. Remember the darkest part of the night is at dawn. Hang in there, I see success on the horizon,” he said.
At the event, Regional and district Speakers and Deputies were sworn and begin work immediately.
Mibiru Masereka was elected the Regional Peoples Speaker and Kaija Nicholas the Regional Deputy Speaker.
Others are District Representatives. They are Lyahinda Adam and Kibyona Lucy for Ntoroko District, Matte Zakaria and KaKuhi Joselyne For Bundibugyo District, Emmy Bakengana and Kawithe Rabbecca for Kasese District.
Kaliba Charles Speaker and Masika Eddy were elected speaker and deputy speaker, respectively for Kasese District.
The Regional Commissioner is Mr. Saulo Matte duputised by FLorence Kabugho and Kabuku Ronald.
District Commissioners are Mukubukya Necson for Ntoroko District, Mulugahara Richard for Kasese District and Musema Jackson for Bundibugyo.
Mr Amuriat cautioned the leaders against general political excitement in the execution of their duties saying “such excitement kills morale, destroys political carriers and asked the leaders to stick to their cause.”