A member of the ruling party’s top organs of the National Executive Council and Central Executive Committee has revealed that the huge crowds that follow FDC politician, Kizza Besigye, have a negative impact on the resistance movement.
Speaking to NTV, Maj Gen Kyaligonza, the NRM vice chairman for Western Uganda, agreed Besigye’s precedence with the crowds was worrying.
In its article titled: “Besigye and the crowds: Is it the unfinished revolution?” Daily Monitor, says the overflow crowds that turn up at Besigye’s campaign rallies these days are a testament to not only his undying popularity, the promotional abilities of his team of like-minded interests, but also a reflection of something of another kind — the unfinished revolution.
“Everywhere he goes starting right from his hometown of Kasangati, fans have been coming out in their thousands to hear him speak. Some say the crowds look for him. Others, like the police, usually block his activities claiming he looks for the crowds to cause chaos.”
Not many politicians, including President Museveni, puts on a show like Besigye does. Many times, in fact, police intervenes to stop the people from gathering in big numbers, Monitor writes.
Kyaligonza says the exit of Kizza Besigye from the ruling government is not only amazing but shows something is wrong with NRM.
“More interestingly, I see him [Besigye] going around and people are collecting money for fuel,” Kyaligonza pointed out.
The idea of collecting money to fund Besigye’s campaigns was born in Iganga town back in July this year.
Kyaligonza agrees in the past, people would never do something like that.
“People giving money to Besigye, shows that we [NRM] need to check ourselves,” Kyaligonza noted.
Talking to CBS on the “the way I see it,” programme Kyaligonza suggested that Ugandans are tired of the regime.
“Look at all those people who are attending [Col Kizza] Besigye’s rallies. They want to support a cause because they are tired.”
Ms Doreen Nyanjura, a coordinator of the National Association of the Unemployed (NAU), a youth group known for civil disobedience, told Monitor Besigye has “a natural connection” with people-the “political magnet” kind of connection.
She attributes this to his ability to connect with the common man.
This “political magnet” was particularly evident during the 2011 “Walk to Work” protests that shook Kampala and many parts of the country, starting off as peaceful but later turned bloody when the regime unleashed armed forces against civilians.
A retired Colonel, Besigye fell out with Museveni in 1999 after accusing the NRM government of derailing from the objectives that in the first place took them to the bush to start war against President Apollo Milton Obote’s government.
In 2001, he ran against Museveni under the “Reform Agenda” and later in 2006 and 2011 under FDC, now the largest Opposition party.
The former coordinator of intelligence agencies, Gen. David Sejusa, for example, has hinted before that Besigye won the February 23, 2006 vote with a 69 per cent margin.
Both in 2001 and 2006, Besigye unsuccessfully petitioned the Supreme Court for a nullification of results before saying he would not bother with court again in 2011 if he lost.
He is back to stand again in 2016 general elections.
However, Besigye’s colleague and FDC party president, Mugisha Muntu, thinks crowds do not ensure a victory.
Muntu told Arua delegates that opposition has had crowds but has not win the top seat in the land for three consecutive times.