Winnie Byanyima: We don’t expect US to lead our struggle


Executive Director of Oxfam International executive director, Winnie Byanyima, says US has already done enough and should now stay out of Ugandan affairs.

Byanyima is the wife to Ugandan opposition leader, Kizza Besigye, who is currently under house arrest at his Kasangati home, outside the capital Kampala.

He remarks come a day or so after Washington issued a statement condemning Besigye arrest, government harassment of opposition politicians, the suppression of media and arrest of journalists.

The US urged the Ugandan government to also stop interfering in the court process involving an election filed by former Prime Minister, Amama Mbabazi.

US has issued other statements before warning President Yoweri Museveni’s government as well as the brutality of security forces.

Museveni was even prompted to telephone the US Secretary of State, John Kerry, reminding him that Ugandans better off handle the problems of Uganda.

Winnie Byanyima seems to agree.

“America stands with Ugandans. Why are Europeans quiet?” she wondered.

“We don’t expect US to lead our struggle. It has questioned election process, arrests, violence etc. That’s enough.”

Byanyima also condemned UPDF’s shooting of civilians in Kasese town in a post-election violence.

The army spokesperson, Lt Col Paddy Ankunda, seemed to defend the action saying people have to learn not to play around with security forces.

“Unacceptable! We must demand justice for families of civilians killed,” Byanyima lashed out.

She said killings and repression are inevitable result of rigged elections. She demanded that justice must be served.

Whenever confronted by a tweep who seemed to accuse her of being partisan, Byanyima said even judges hearing Mbabazi’s petition are NRM cadres.

“What’s partisan? The judges themselves, including CJ [Chief Justice Bart Katureebe], were NRM cadres. What’s good for the goose is…”

She said the fusion of the police with army is a common characteristic of authoritarian and undemocratic governments.

Byanyima earlier said Africans fought and ended Apartheid in South Africa; they can do the same with dictatorships.

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