Museveni is slowly but steadily realising his dream of militarising each and every aspect of government undertaking in Uganda. The mchaka mchaka (political and paramilitary drills) indoctrination programmes of the 80s and 90s at local government level and the continuing Kyankwanzi programmes all allude to this desire. The mchaka mchaka having lost steam, he is attempting to revive it through the patriotism project earlier designed to target education institutions.
The recent retreat of Makerere university students at the Police training school is part of this wider project. Initially, it was the quash military Special District Administrators (SDAs) and NRA cadres under the guise of political mobilisation that pioneered the project. At an earlier attempt to tame the once hostile police force, NRA cadres like Grace Turyagumanawe attended the NRA Political School at Entebbe during the late 80s.
The appointment of General Aronda as the Internal Affairs Minister to supplement the earlier one of Gen. Kayihura as the Inspector General of Government, paved the way for the army to make a full incursion into civilian policing. The aim is to turn the police into a coercive arm against any form of dissent against his life presidency project. Already, the national identity card project - a component of the internal affairs docket has been taken over by the army personnel.
Some army officers have taken over immigration services while the traditional immigration officers are being taken to the army camps to undergo military and political indoctrination. For some time now civilian personnel manning institutions like wildlife management and revenue collection have been undergoing militarisation process through specialised intelligence collection training. The most recent one for game rangers was conducted by CMI.
When Gen Tinyefuza fled into exile, as a counter insurgency measure Museveni deployed his brother Gen Saleh to over seen the mobilisation of army veterans from the Luwero triangle. Under the cover of mobilising them for poverty eradication, the real target was to identify and monitor their activities with view of dissuading them from being lured into armed insurgency. The project has seen the deployment of serving army officers to manage this project in different areas in the east, central and western regions.
The project has proved to be another gamble as the same veterans have expressed defiance through the recent overwhelming support for an opposition candidate in the recently concluded Luwero by-election and the alleged plot to militarily attack Kabamba barracks. They were sending a message to Museveni that his usual lies and deceptive ways have run out of time. Capt. (RTD) Lutwama was recently tortured to death while in CMI custody over treasonous allegations. In West Nile and Northern Uganda government is alleging that there is recruitment of anti-government fighters. The incarceration of Brig Michael Ondoga and the exile of former Minister Bakoko Bakoru both hailing from West Nile alludes to this development.
It is the events in the last paragraph that are now driving Museveni to seek to widen his military terror machine to every village in the country under the cover of fighting poverty. His current argument that his soldiers are to take over management of the agricultural projects countrywide is a desperate move to expand his intelligence network on one hand. On the other hand, he is stuck with the number officers who are under utilised in the NRA and deserve to be retired but for fear of the obvious he wants to continue holding them under the military law. Since he believes in bribery, his plan is to deploy these officers so that they may swindle the taxi payer's money and amasse wealth in return for loyalty. The NRA has a clear record of mismanaging each and every project that it has undertaken. The Officers under whose nose those projects have been mismanaged have instead been rewarded with promotions and reassignment.
The earliest was the directorate of production that was swept clean by Phenecas Kaitirima to become one of the earliest rich officers NRA. Then came the NRA loan scheme also swept clean by Elly Kayanja. Then came the Army Shop where very senior members swindled millions of dollars only to victimise late Brig Tadeo Kanyankole. Next was the local production of uniforms by NYTIL under Elly Rwakakoko, a few private companies owned by close family members and friends like Cristex garments of Kellen Kayongo, another company was owned by the wife of Chris Bakiza the former director of CID, Eladam Enterprises in Jinja owned by a former Colonel in the Ethiopia army.
BATA (U) ltd produced gumboots. Then came the Ministry of Defence subsidiary of National Enterprises Corporation (NEC). NEC had NECLIME in Dura that was swept clean by Ssekidde, NECFOAM, NEC Ranch at Kisozi that was taken by Museveni for personal use and turned into his second family home. NECTARINE restaurant that was formerly Kasisira at Crested Towers. What only survived was NEC industries in Luwero after Jackline Mbabazi and her successor Gen Fred Mwesigye swept it clean but only to be revived by the Russian funded secret military project currently under Brig James Mugira. Not to mention other agricultural projects in Hima and Kiryandongo that were run down by military managers.
The Kaziini initiated multi-billion army trucks plant at Lugazi that he turned around and swept clean using his cousin Capt. Raymond Kayondo before he facilitated him to flee to the USA. Look at the construction unit under Brig Eng Sabiiti the brother to Bank of Uganda governor Emmanuel Tumusiime. It’s another money-making hub as soldiers continue to sleep outside 28 years down the road yet Iddi Amin had Managed to set the foundation in such a short period.
Yes, Iddi Amin deployed soldiers to supervise and manage some government projects. His projects are a success story because despite the low level of education, they were not thieves or thieving had not been institutionalised as is the case under Museveni. Slowly we shall see army officers appointed to ministries, parastatals, as regional and district commissioners and managers of public bodies.
The army has ten members of parliament, Col Bantariza was recently appointed to the Media Center, Gen Matayo Kyaligonza is an Ambassador, Major James Kinobe is an Ambassador too, recently promoted Major Kimeze is a king in Bugerere, Col Martin Ayongi Kamya is a king in Bundibugyo while a renown armed robber Col Mawa Dhula is the Kasese district head. An attempt to have ISO's Major David Rusa as the Tooro Kingdom Prime Minister flopped.
Therefore, Museveni's plans to deploy soldiers to manage the NAADS is nothing but a ploy to have soldiers take of civilian institutions. It is not an economic venture to alleviate poverty but a security measure to expand his style of militarily managing public affairs. Its for this reason that of recent he has adopted to putting on fully military uniform at most public functions. Some of his cohorts like Nyombi Tembo, Sam Engola and a few others are fond of donning the military combat camouflage uniform. The message is clear - power and prestige lies in the military.
To drive the point home, Museveni recently told army veterans to enlist their children into the army promising to create a special quarter for them. The practice has been going on for sometime where privileged army officers have been enlisting their relatives and friends into certain departments of the army. The end result will be the emergence of military families whose loyalty will be with the status quo and not the nation
INFORMATION IS POWER