They denied it alright but everything else indicates Forum for Democratic Change bigwigs, Mugisha Muntu and Kizza Besigye are still at war.
Both opposition politicians, Muntu and Besigye are vying for the position of party flag bearer ahead of 2016 elections.
It started when Besigye blamed Muntu who was the secretary for mobilisation in his reign, of failing to build party structures.
Muntu fought back comparing Besigye to the Biblical Moses who delivered the Israelites from slavery in Egypt but failed to get them to the Promised Land, Canaan.
Muntu then compared himself to Prophet Joshua who delivered the Israelis to the Promised Land after Moses (Besigye) failed.
While addressing press in Fort Portal last week, Besigye brought back the discussion of building party structures.
“I cut my first term as party president short in order to build structures except that in a dictatorship, you can’t have strong structures, he keep buying them.”
“Since 2006, FDC has been the Leaders of Opposition in Parliament. How would that be possible if we didn’t have structures?” he queried, seemingly directing the question to the then secretary for mobilisation.
Besigye, however, said this time round, structures should not be the main issue because “our team decided that when they pour hat when they pour mad on us, we get water and clean”.
Suddenly, he was at it again: “Moses [Besigye] took the Children of Israel [Ugandans] from Egypt and crossed the Red Sea to where Joshua [Muntu] found them.”
Besigye continued: “In our case, we are still in Egypt and the Pharaoh [President Yoweri Museveni] is still alive.”
He pressed on: “So Joshua [Muntu] should wait for Moses [Besigye] to cross the Children of Israel from Egypt.”
Muntu shoots back
Muntu who seemed not have taken the jibes lightly, shot back and hit Besigye where it hurts most.
Speaking in Arua town on Saturday, Muntu said pulling crowds at rallies does not necessarily lead a candidate to victory.
He recalled that opposition had huge crowds in the 2006 general elections but this has not translated into victory.
“I have not seen the crowds that welcomed us in 2006 elections in towns like Arua, Hoima, Kasese, Rukungiri, Mbale and many others. Those crowds could have moved us to victory but what happened, it is because we were not organised, and we had no plans to move forward with them. Crowds alone cannot lead us to victory,” Muntu told delegates.
“You can’t move 10,000 men and women when they are not organised and you think you will win,” Muntu said emphasising “Organisation, organisation, organisation.”
Speaking at Alpha Resort in Lira town on Monday, Muntu said: “As long as there is a new plan and a new strategy, I have no problem….emotions cannot take power.”
He elaborated on the same point the next day while addressing delegates from Bukedi sub-region.
“You must avoid using sentiments in decision making, they do not work. They can easily push you and the entire country in a ditch…We must learn to use thinking.”
This is in line with Muntu’s earlier jibe at Besigye when he said “talking tough and shouting” will never lead FDC or the opposition to State House.
Speaking in Tooro on Friday, Besigye referred to Muntu as his leader saying he has known and worked with Muntu for a long time and the on-going “competition” for the party presidency will not affect the harmony and unity of the party.
“We must do anything in our power to minimize friction in our party. We make sure that there is minimum or even no hostility among our members,” he advised.
He blamed enemies of the party for trying to cause them problems.
Whether the two are to be taken for their word, is another matter altogether.