Mayengo: Entebbe raid reduced Amin to nothing

Wilfred Boese (Horst Buchholz) hands his submachine gun to president Idi Amin (Yaphet Kotto).

Ambassador Israel Mayengo says the raid on Entebbe airport in 1976 by Israeli commandos reduced then President and Field Marshall Idi Amin to “nothing”.

“I was at home in Muyenga. We heard about the Entebbe raid over the radio. Israelis came to rescue their own. They value their citizens. Here, our people are taken and nothing is done,” the ambassador said.

Mayengo was speaking on NBS television ahead of the arrival of Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for the commemoration of the 40th anniversary of the raid.

“Amin was supposed to be powerful but that night when the commandos took over Entebbe, he was reduced to nothing. Idi Amin overrated himself.” Mayengo says Amin didn’t expect that a raid and rescue mission would be carried out.

“Idi Amin consulted no one before he allowed that plane to land. After all, he was the only man with a vision.”

The ambassador says the hijacking and eventual landing at Entebbe of that Air France plane full of Israelis dented the Israeli-Africa relations.

“The events of 4 July 1976 remind us about the relevance of having sober presidential advisers. Amin was the only man with a vision.”

He added: “Before we sent our boys to Somalia, how much consultation was carried out? Is our president being advised well?”

Mayengo said many presidential decisions are taken without sufficient consideration hence the need to vet presidential advisers better.

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