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Leaders are capable of confusing people.Ask Mr.James Akena and Group

By Abbey Kibirige Semuwemba
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Dear readers,
Leaders are capable of confusing people if, like it is believed, most people don't have independent minds. When a group of Honourable Akena James's supporters go to Lango in northern Uganda and tell people that the current UPC president,Dr.Olara Otuunu, is so bad to the extent that he participated in the 1985 coup that took the Langis out of power, it is a big statement that gets registered on people's minds forever. Obote may be dead but his name is still a big influence in the Lango region because this is where he started his Uganda politics before he eventually became the president of Uganda.So any word uttered by his son is taken at heart by the Langi.

Some people have said that the Langi have been confused since the death of Obote but i dont think this is true. The Langi are not confused but It's the leaders they believe in now that have confused them so much. Mr.Akena and some anti-Otunnu MPs were in the area prior to the UPC delagates conference telling people all sorts of lies against Otunu. Now that Otunu is the UPC president, the population in the north does not know whether to accept him or not. This makes Lango and almost the entire northern Uganda very vulnerable in the upcoming 2011 elections. Anybody can take it at this moment in time.So i call upon Otunu,Besigye, and Mao to pay these guys a visit or send some opposition cadres in the region to undo the damage that was done by supporters of Obote's son.If they dont go there soon and wait till next year, it may be too late.

President Museveni has also recently been in the area and received a lukewarm reception from the wananchi but he did some damage too. The speech by Honourable Akena while the president was in Lira is also not good news for Otunnu and the rest of the opposition. Akena's speech was not different from a beggar stationed at the entrance of the new taxi park in Kampala city -asking for shs.1000. He asked for the benefits given to the families of former presidents and his body language was like that of a man ready to be welcomed to serve in the Museveni government any time. Otunnu should watch Obote's son like a hawk because he(Akena) is ready to bring him down using all tricks in the book. Mr.Joseph Ochieno has been quite since the end of the delegates conference by watching things from the sidelines but he is a well known supporter of James Akena . Dr.Otunnu needs to keep an eye on both Akena and Joseph Ochieno because i don't think they are ready to accept him as their boss. Ochieno was also against UPC joining the Inter Party Cooperation(IPC) way before he stood for UPC presidential candidacy.

If Honourable Akena wants to distance himself from the people linking Dr.Otunnu to the 1985 coup allegations, we request him to publicy come out and tell Ugandans that:

he does not believe that Otunnu was part of the engineers of the 1985 coup that led to the final straw of his father's leadership;

he wishes Otunnu success despite turning down a position to serve under him, and that he will help UPC progress behind the backdoors;

He will never serve as 'anything' in any government led by president Museveni unless if there is a coalition government agreed after a disputed election.

If Mr.Akena can do this for Ugandans then we shall leave him in peace. Short of that, he will be held responsible for what is happening in Lango and other parts of the northern Uganda where the opposition is losing the ground. He will be held responsible for any gains NRM may make in the north in 2011 elections.

Ugandans should know that leaders are also capable of creating a system that is intended to confuse people before and during the elections. They can, for instance, create ballot boxes or a voting system that is not familiar to a man in Lango or Kangulumira, and later play it to the their advantage of winning an election. For example, this happened in the 2000 USA elections, where some people argued that the format of the ballot in Palm Beach County led to confusion and caused people who intended to vote for Al Gore to mistakenly cast votes for Pat Buchanan or punch two holes resulting in a voided ballot. Similarly, we are remaining with a few months to enter into the 2011 campaigns but why do you think that the Electoral Commission(EC) has not done enough to make sure that the 2011 are free and fair? Who do you think will benefit from this confusion created by the leaders in power?

Let me leave you with a quote from Hermann Goering, Nazi leader, at the Nuremberg Trials after World War II: “Why of course the people don't want war … But after all it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy, or a fascist dictatorship, or a parliament, or a communist dictatorship….. Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is to tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger.”

So, now you understand why it is easy to get a following to fight any war in Uganda or the rest of the world. If any leader (even the most stupid or unpopular) tells people today that he is recruiting to fight the Museveni government, he will get a following. Trust me on this, because it is in human nature not to ask a lot of questions when faced with a brave person. If any leader stand up today after being chairman of a certain opposition district, stands up today and tell people that he wants to stand against Museveni, he will get a following, despite the obvious hurdles in front of him.

It is easy for people to believe in the lies and distortions their leaders tell them. With a straight face, political figures tell the people that black is white, war is peace, lies are truths, joblessness is economic recovery, ignorance is intelligence, FDC is the same as NRM and they get a following. Haven't you seen how some people continue to say that FDC is the same as NRM and get a following? Even when they are faced with the truth, they will continue spreading the same message because they know that they can always tap the gullible ones. Haven't you heard president Museveni promising certain things to Ugandans from 1986 and he never implements them but still some people vote for him after 23 years in power? The fact is that Leaders are capable of twisting words and confusing anyone, and therefore i ask all Ugandans to watch out .

Thank you

Abbey Kibirige Semuwemba