Ugandan President, Yoweri Museveni was sworn in today (May 12) for his controversial fifth term at the Kololo Independence Grounds in the capital, Kampala amid pomp and pageantry.
15 Heads of state and delegates from friendly countries are attending the function. Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe, Tanzania’s President Pombe Magufuli and Zambia’s President Edgar Lungu are some of the heads of state who will grace today’s event.
The 71-year old Museveni who is the chairperson of NRM, has already been in office for three decades. He came to power in 1986 after carrying out a five-year-long protracted guerrilla warfare in the jungles of Luwero triangle (1981-1986).
The Ugandan President was declared winner of the presidential elections with 60.75%. Dr. Col. Kizza Besigye of Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) got 35.37%. Former Prime Minister, Amama Mbabazi, who challenged the results in the Supreme Court and lost the case, came third with 1.43%.
In preparation for the inauguration, the country’s communication regulator yesterday, May 11, ordered internet service providers to block access to Twitter, Facebook, and WhatsApp, according to journalists and digital watchdog non-profits in the country. This would make it the second time in less than three months that the government has censored the platforms.
BBC reports that President Yoweri Museveni has been condemned by a leading rights group for inviting his Sudanese counterpart, Omar al-Bashir to his inauguration, despite the fact that he is wanted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) for alleged war crimes in Darfur.
Human Rights Watch researcher, Maria Burnett said in a statement that Mr. Museveni has banned social media, detained opposition leader, Kizza Besigye and was tarnishing his inauguration further by welcoming Mr. Bashir.
After his inauguration today, Museveni is expected to map-out a new system of governance based on a lean government that would prioritize income generation to uplift majority of Ugandans out of poverty.
In the last term, Museveni prioritized infrastructure development, especially the road network and electricity but according to the NRM manifesto, the next course of action would be on operation wealth creation, which the party believes would directly sort out poverty among millions of households in the country.