By Melanie Nathan, September 19, 2014.
Some call it a firing and others a reshuffle: “Dr Ruhakana Rugunda has been appointed as Uganda’s new Prime Minster in a cabinet reshuffle,” notes the Daily Monitor’s politcally correct emphasis. “He replaces Kinkiizi West MP Amama Mbabazi who has been the Prime Minister since June 2011.” Some believe the firing came as Mbabazi presents a threat to unseat Museveni in 2016.
President Yoweri Museveni announced the firing/shuffle to the Speaker of Parliament, Hon. Rebecca Kadaga, in a letter where he named Dr. Rugunda, the health minister as Mbabazi’s appointed replacement:
“By virtue of the powers vested in the president of the Republic of Uganda by article 108A(1) of the Constitution of the Republic of Uganda, I have with immediate effect decided to appoint Dr Ruhakana Rugunda as the new Prime Minister of Uganda,” the September 18, 2014 letter reads in part.
“I therefore hereby forward the names and curriculum vitae of Dr Ruhakana Rugunda to you for the required parliamentary approval. I thank the Rt. Hon. Amama Mbabazi for the contribution he has made to this country,” the letter further reads.
There are some skeptics who seek an odd logic in the ‘muckerings’ of a 30 year dictatorship – a Facebook post of an insider noting:-
To all those sympathizing with the former premier. Intelligence briefing says Mbabazi’s knifing is a ploy by President Yoweri Museveni Yoweri Kaguta and Amama Mbabazi to win him (Mbabazi) sympathy votes come 2016. If Museveni had come out openly to say that he wants Mbabazi to be his successor no one would vote for him because he is very much aware that he and NRM is losing so they resolved to behave like (this) so to woo Ugandans to Mbabazi’s side. Do you think President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni can trash a man who has been on his right hand side for over 40 years?
To the above comment I could not resist this troll:
- Melanie Nathan: seriously deceptive politicking Ugandan style? What does that say for culture – that green is really pink? And wine is really beer? And Museveni is really a woman in drag?
- Melanie Nathan: I can take my comment above further – Oh yes and if M7 is really a woman in drag must mean Janet is really a lesbian and the Anti-Homosexuality Act was a political design to ensure their safe passage through life as a couple.
In all seriousness, to many this is the action of a desperate despot trying to hold on to dwindling support. After all, Museveni had to resort to signing the odious Anti-Homosexuality Act (AHA), at great risk, while rejecting international favor for domestic popularity, in February of this year. He indeed kept momentary favor with his own party, and now ousts the very friend who, with great courage, resisted the AHA.
Apparently Mbabazi responded to Rugunda’s appointment and his firing, saying he was grateful for having served as premier. Mbabazi in a press statement he issued on Friday said, “…..I will continue to offer my services to my country in whatever capacity I can. I have congratulated Dr Rugunda on his appointment. I have no doubts that he has the capacity to execute the duties of the Prime Minister effectively.”