Nigerian Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo today represented President Muhammadu Buhari at the inauguration of President Kaguta Museveni, as Ugandan President for a sixth term.
Prof. Osinbajo joined several African Heads of State and other foreign dignitaries at the ceremony which took place at the Kololo Independence Grounds in Kampala, Uganda.
The swearing in of Museveni followed very acrimonious and bloody pre and post election crises, with crackdown on the opposition, particularly musician Bobi Wine and his family, who was Museveni’s main opponent.
Museveni was declared winner of the election last January, even though there were reports of confirmed irregularities, and he took the oath of office today, the sixth time since becoming Uganda leader in 1986.
76-year-old Museveni has never shown any sign of leaving power and the force he used to stay on this time showed he is emulating several of his African colleagues who, once they taste power, do not want to give it up.
Bobi Wine challenged the election result in court but decided not to continue with the petition because he claimed the judiciary would be manipulated by Museveni.
Museveni was involved in rebellions that toppled Ugandan leaders Idi Amin in 1979) and Milton Obote in 1985 before he took over power in 1986.
Born in southwestern Ntungamo district in 1944, Museveni attended Dar es Salaam University in Tanzania from 1967, where he obtained a degree in Economics and Political Science. At the university, he was an active Marxist and pan-Africanist, receiving guerrilla training in Mozambique.
In 1970, he joined Uganda’s intelligence service under President Apollo Milton Obote, but fled to Tanzania when Idi Amin seized power in 1971. While working as a lecturer in the northern Tanzanian town of Moshi, Museveni formed the opposition Front for National Salvation (FRONASA) in 1973.
In 1978, when Idi Amin ordered the invasion of Tanzania, FRONASA joined other opposition groups to form the Uganda National Liberation Front, which together with the Tanzanian army attacked Amin’s forces and toppled him in 1979. Museveni was named defence minister and later minister for regional cooperation under various administrations.
He formed a political party, the Uganda Patriotic Movement, which won one out of 126 seats in parliament in general elections in 1980. He rejected the election results and in 1981 began a rebellion against the new administration of Milton Obote.
Museveni’s National Resistance Movement/Army (NRM/A) fought for five years as Obote faced growing international criticism – Amnesty International estimated in 1985 that his administration had been responsible for over 300,000 civilian deaths in Uganda.
In 1985, following the overthrow of Obote by Tito Okello, Museveni agreed to peace talks mediated by then Kenyan leader, Daniel Arap Moi. The talks were unsuccessful, and a tentative ceasefire broke down almost immediately.
On 22nd January 1986, the NRA captured Kampala and toppled Okello’s government. Museveni was sworn in as president on 29th January, promising to implement a 10-point programme for development and democracy.
The part about democracy has however, been a pipe dream since 1986 and after this 6th term, no one is sure what will happen next.