While handing over the ministerial office to the newly appointed Security minister Maj Gen Jim Muhwezi on Wednesday, the outgoing Security Minister Gen Elly Tumwine said he was to advise President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni to start thinking about a smooth transition of power for the long-term stability of the country.
“I will continue to give him my genuine support and advice and to me now, I think the best advice we can give him is to prepare for a smooth transition so that we ensure stability and long-term peace for the long future,”Gen Tumwine said.
” You know it should be our duty to save him from being ‘ngamba nyenka.’ The Banyankole have the proverb ‘ngamba nyenka anyunka amarwa mabi’; That the one who does not take advice brews some bad beer. But we should save the President that problem or we should save him from the disease diagnosed by political scientists and political psychologists that is called hubris syndrome,” he added.
Gen Tumwine’s statements left many Ugandans wondering what happened to the senior army officer since he had been one of the staunch supporters of President Museveni’s stay in power and he has always been telling the opposition that they fought for the country and they are going no where.
Others wondered why he has advised President Museveni at a time when he has been relegated from both the cabinet and Parliament.
Some critics have since lashed out at the unremorseful general. Among them are prominent opposition figures DP’s Norbert Mao and FDC’s Ibrahim Ssemujju Nganda.
While appearing on NBS TV’s Frontline show on Thursday, they said it was too late for Gen Tumwine to cry out to Museveni after being dumped in a recycle bin.
Mao said, “Our old general is lamenting because he was a big promoter of the lifting of both term limit and the age limit. To the best of my knowledge, human rights abuses by the security forces are not a target of his attacks. Instead of making a speech to give counsel to his successors, he was just lamenting.”
He added that democracy will never survive if a country has people of a false sense of entitlement like Tumwine.
“What Gen Tumwine has started whether we call it advise or lamentation should now start a debate and it must be about NRM institutionalizing itself. So that it does not lean on an individual but it must lean on whatever founding ideals they have to Ugandans.”
On the other hand, Nganda, the Kira Municipality legislator said that Gen Tumwine loves power too much, therefore, having lost both seats he has started making alarms to alert President Museveni to think of retiring.
“Gen Tumwine likes power but now he is extremely powerless having lost the elections from the UPDF and Museveni throwing him out. I don’t think he made that statement because he loves Uganda but because he was denied a position. However if such a statement comes from Gen Tumwine whom I know very well, it’s a good gesture because all of the time he has been singing ‘we brought peace……..’ but if he can see now that this country needs power transitions, I was shocked and I will meet and thank him for that.”
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