Museveni spits at Mao political succession talk

President Museveni and Justice Minister, Nobert Mao (PHOTO/Courtesy)

MBALE – Although the Democratic Party president general and Minister of Constitutional Affairs, Mr Norbert Mao, has maintained that he is preparing Uganda for a peaceful transition of power in 2031, President Museveni has said there is no agreement on that.

Mr Mao, who was speaking at the belated Youth Day celebrations at Bubangizi Secondary School playground at Mitooma on 1 October, said the President gave him the assignment of ensuring a peaceful transition.

But in a twist of events, President Museveni has said the Memorandum of Understanding that the NRM signed with the Democratic Party in July 2022 did not include any agreement on political transition.

President Museveni said Mr Norbert Mao, the DP president general, was brought on board as a strategy to “bring the opposition into government” but not to oversee any form of political transition.

“So that is our doctrine to unite as many as possible so that the ones who are not with us are fewer. Maybe Mr Mao is presenting it the way he is presenting it but is our own old way of uniting anybody who agrees to unite with us. That is his approach but we have discussed broadly unity,” Mr Museveni said

President Museveni, who has been in power for 36 years, was responding to a question of whether part of his deal with Mr Mao was to pave way for a political transition like Mr Mao has been claiming.

Mr Mao was appointed to cabinet after the July handshake, and has constantly been quoted as saying that one of his major tasks is to help lay the groundwork for a political transition.

President Museveni’s revelation is enough evidence for those who warned Mr Mao not to trust the president claiming that he never respects agreements.

Mr Mao has already come under fire from a section of DP leaders, who want him to step down for leading the party into an unclear working arrangement with the NRM and describe him as a traitor who has killed DP.

But Museveni insisted he lured Mr Mao because he was part of a group of Acholi leaders “who were fighting the NRM”, after the overthrow of the Tito Okello Lutwa regime in the 1986 NRM liberation war.

Mr Okello, an Acholi, was president of Uganda from July 29, 1985 until January 26, 1986 when he was overthrown by the guerrilla war of the NRA led by Mr Museveni, now the president of Uganda.

President Yoweri Museveni Tibuhaburwa said the NRM will choose his successor in accordance with the party’s values and ideology and that it is because of applying the NRM ideology that Uganda has achieved immense development.

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