Presidential hopeful Amama Mbabazi who Monday kick-started consultative meetings, says he has never seen something like he saw in Mbale town today.
“I spent a lot of time in Government but I have never seen such a huge welcome,” Amama who was donning kigisu traditional regalia said while beginning his speech.
“I tried to come here (9th July) but was blocked. Now I know why they didn’t want me here. They feared such numbers!”
He said it was a huge challenge getting to Mbale and is now happy to have done so especially after the first attempt that led to his arrest and detention.
Mbabazi said he chose Mbale as his first stop, because of its historical contribution to the NRA liberation struggle.
Mbabazi said when he met former Kenyan president, Daniel Arap Moi, he told “me it was Mbale that they held their Liberation and Freedom meetings in the 1950s”.
“A decade and a half later, People from Mbale constituted part of the FRONASA that was trained in Tanganyika.”
He continued: “43 years later, here we are. Uganda has achieved a great deal in the aftermath of oppression and bad governance that the world didn’t expect.”
Amama said Uganda has garnered respect and Cooperation of the world hence shouldn’t take this for granted and forget how important freedom was.
“But it’s for these same reasons that we might lose. Unemployment, Weakening shilling, education system becomes less useful by the day.”
He said day by day, Ugandans live with the illusion of peace when in actual sense, Freedom, Justice and rule of Law are being eroded.
He said for instance today, it is a crime to hold certain Political Opinions.
He said laws have become secondary to human culture and the Constitution is now another piece of Literature in Libraries.
“This is the current state of our Nation. And that state is unacceptable. A great challenge lies ahead of us.”
He said that was why Ugandans needed to commit their energy to rejecting bad leadership by Going Forward.
“…and going Forward in pursuit of what is happening today. Our perception about Government is wrong. Government is a service to the People and the Leaders of Government therefore are your servants.”
Amama listed the things Ugandans need; a complete revival of Democracy and Institutions, a government based on rule of Law not the whims of individuals and job opportunities for every working man and woman in the country, especially for the young ones.
“As a country, we use $150M each year to pay for Ugandans who go seeking better Health Care out of Uganda. And yet many of the experts working on these Ugandans abroad are Ugandans. This is shameful and must change!”
Turning to security personnel, Amama said for any police to be credible, they must enjoy the confidence of the people and Vice versa which hasn’t been the case in Uganda.
Earlier, his supporters clashed with police which denied them a chance to form a procession and nearly prevented him from accessing cricket oval grounds where he addressed a rally.