Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni is among the long leading Presidential leaders in Africa. The 76-year-old has lasted in Power for 35 years and is still contesting to preserve his seat. Mr. Museveni rose to Power in 1986, after successfully ousting the then President.
His ascension to Power was an excellent achievement for Ugandans as they were tired of the then authoritative leader. However, staying in Power that long has not been a walk in the park for Museveni. He has fought many battles, some against politicians while others against civilians. Amid his reign, he has developed a sense of patriotism and persistence.
Nevertheless, to secure his seat, he has built institutions, exercised support, compromised independent institutions, and even sidelined opponents. Generally, he has done a lot to remain at the top. Last year, while addressing whether he would contest come 2021, all he said was:
“How can I go out of a banana plantation I have planted that has started bearing fruits?”
From the above response, it was evident Mr. Museveni was not at any point ready to surrender his throne.
Why is Museveni Still in Power?
Yoweri Museveni has maintained being in Power for 35 years despite contesting against prominent politicians. This is attributable to his selfless nature when he liberated Uganda amid Obote’s rule. To date, Ugandans see him as a strong leader, willing to sacrifice himself for his people during trying times. Museveni always portrays a fatherly and grandfatherly figure to his people.
Due to this rapport, many young Ugandans refer to him as “Sevo” while he calls them Bazululu. The latter means grandchildren in the Luganda language. Moreover, the President is also a family man. In fact, amid the coronavirus pandemic, a video of him doing press-ups online. By doing so, he demonstrated that even from home, one could still keep safe.
President Yoweri is also still in Power because the Ugandan constitution permits him. I.e., since the Parliament members eliminated the age factor, which would limit President Museveni from recontesting. Some reports have revealed that the decision to amend the changes was because the MPs felt they owed the President their positions.
What People Think About Museveni
In most cases, influential politicians always receive both negative and positive energy. The positive energy is usually from supporters who look up to their leaders, while negative energy is from critics who can’t wait to send the leaders home. For Museveni’s case, Opposition leaders like Bobi Wine have alleged that he has been sabotaging his campaigns and sending officers to harass him. Likewise, Bobi Wine supporters are sharing the same hatred.
Nonetheless, some people celebrate Museveni for his exemplary performance as a leader in Uganda. John Nagenda, a close friend of Museveni, describes him as a selfless being because of his ability to inspire loyalty. Nagenda says that President Museveni was prepared to die for Uganda; hence they are lucky to have him. Compared to Museveni, Nagenda says that most people he knows who had been presidents did it for themselves as they wanted glory. According to him, President Museveni is a true Africanist.