By Stephen Twinoburyo
Mr. Museveni, you came to power more than 25 years ago. In your first official address, you assertively stated that Africa’s biggest problem was leaders who overstayed in power – and in the process abused power and got corrupt. You went on to state that you weren’t interested in power and would rule for only five years and hand over to somebody else. You didn’t want to be like Uganda’s past leaders, Amin (who ruled for a massive 8 years, shiew!) and Obote (about 7 broken years). These leaders you likened to swine. That was in 1986.
Seeing that it’s now 2011 and just earlier this year you ‘won’ a five year term and considering that we are now seeing swine incarnate, I would like to give you an idiot’s guide on how to leave power.
So Mr Not-to-be-too-swine, here is how you can leave power:
- STEP 1: Wake up tomorrow morning and realise that Uganda belongs to the people of Uganda. That’s a major first step.
- STEP 2: Think back to 1986 and recall the speech you made at the steps of parliament in Kampala. I was present. It’s very important that you remember what you said. If you don’t remember (I can understand this comes with age), ask one of the slumberers around you that you pay massively to at least do some work – find you the contents of that speech.
- STEP 3: It’s common for idiots to forget where they came from but you are not an idiot. Defy the effects of age and try to recall something called the 10-point programme. Retrace its steps and possibly task more slumberers to locate where it went and establish whether it’s alive. There are many conspiracy theorists that narrate its death but I am sure you can disprove them. You would make that chap Timothy Kalyegira swallow his conspiracies.
- STEP 4: Now to everyone who advises you to stay longer, think about their motives. Evaluate your last 15 years and be true to yourself to what your rule has added to the country (I mean positives. In mathematics I’ve learnt that a negative can also be added). For this small M&E, the monitoring part is easy, just look back. The evaluation is where you may need an honest look. I know we old people are not comfortable with these things of technology but you may have to get an account on facebook and get honest opinions from common Ugandans that you won’t get through conventional media. For starters I won’t mind adding you as a friend on facebook. I am tired of those time-wasters that call themselves spies and register accounts on facebook ostensibly to gather information. I even wonder why you waste our money on them because frankly, they are not helping you and would not even have the balls to tell you what some of us tell them in their faces. They are helping to sink you deeper. There are even those that tried to send me messages of intimidation, blackmail, slander e.t.c but I told them to take a hike. I don’t know if they told you. Personally, I despise them. I guess we are now making progress.
- STEP 5: Now having come through the last quarter a century, take a look at the present. Look at the country’s hospitals, the country’s roads, the country’s educational institutions, the country’s wealth, the state of the country’s public workers, the state of the country’s common man, the state the shilling which in your earlier years you knocked many zeros from, look at how Uganda has advanced compared to the other countries in the region – of course don’t compare with South Sudan, eastern DRC and Somalia. You need to make comparison with working states. Look at the general look of our towns and compare with what you see when you travel out of the country. Think of your promise a quarter a century ago. Then think of how much of the country’s money you splashed out in order to ‘win’ the last elections and then ask yourself “Am I in the right place?” Since this is an idiot’ guide, I guide you to the answer “No”. Me and you are surely making progress.
- STEP 6: As this gets clear, make a decision that you will leave power sooner rather than later. Close your eyes for a few minutes and visualise yourself out of power. See Uganda with another president. See the country moving on without you at the helm. Then open your eyes and say “Yes I can do it!” Then feel that Eureka moment. I can assure you, you will feel a whole load lifting off your shoulders. Summon your family, tell them the good news and allay any concerns they may have but remain firm. You may let a day pass so this can sink in. Then call a press conference, and like Botswana’s Festus Mogae, announce that you are not going to complete this term as president and you will instead go to Rwakitura and tend to your cows – and possibly grow sweet potatoes too. Allow processes where a new leader will be selected and let New Year 2012 find you a retired farmer in Rwakitura. I can assure you I’ll come visit you, pour my gratitude and enjoy a mug of milk (I don’t know what ekyanzi is called in English but that’s what I mean by mug). By the way I’m told both your wife and son wrote insightful books about Uganda. That would be a good time for you and I to discuss their insight.
- STEP 7: Start feeling like Uganda’s ex-president.
Ahaa…. I think now you get it! Not so? With your visionary, you can do this in 6 steps. You will then look back at what you have done and be happy. On the seventh step you will rest.
I have volunteered this guide because of my feeling of collective guilt. The guilt of being among the many Ugandans that for long gave you a blank cheque and built you into what we have now. Now our heads have to get thinking to see how we can correct this by helping you out.
This is just a simple guide. I am sure there are many Ugandans out there that can refine it and make your exit much smoother.
The downside of not following this guide is that instead of retiring to Rwakitura where we may enjoy endless mugs of milk and platefuls of bitakuri, you may find yourself retiring to The Hague and from there to hell. The first, Ugandans can do and the second, they would leave to God.
I am hopeful you are going to find this guide useful. I can’t wait…!!
PS: As a follow-up to this, in case you don’t find this guide helpful, I am writing “An Idiot’s Guide to Forcing Museveni From Power”