America Denies Hand in Uganda Politics

Written by: 
Christopher Tusiime

Tom Malinowski, assistant secretary of state for Democracy, Human rights and Labour, yesterday said that Obama and the US government is non partisan in Ugandan politics.

Speaking at the dialogue organised by University Forum on Governance (UNFOG) in partnership with USAID and international Republican institute (IRS) with the theme, " Youth participation in the political process: constraints and opportunities", Malinowski said that American government only wants to see democratic rule of governance in Uganda and respect of the country's constitution, but they have no preferred candidate in Uganda's forth coming general elections.

“We don't support Museveni, Mbabazi or any opposition leader. All we do is endeavor that the constitution is followed and not changed to suit the interests of the politicians. We don't have a favourite candidate and we don't have a favourite party in Uganda." Malinowski said.

Malinowski also added that as the America government, they are much aware of excessive human rights abuse in Uganda, a reason they want to ensure peace in the country from America and even from here.

"Your country is important to the United states a reason we have to ensure peace is in the country.  Uganda has worked with us to ensure peace in Africa. It has managed to restore peace in Somalia by fighting Al shaabab." Malinowski said.

The dialogue which was attended by various politicians and youth leaders in different jurisdictions, attracted more than 500 youths from various universities in Kampala like Makerere University, Kampala international University, Makerere Business School, IUIU and Kyambogo University.

Dr. Michael Mugisha, assistant lecturer in the department of population and gender studies, Makerere University, encouraged the youth in Uganda to participate in politics and voting no matter their financial statuses."Being broke does not mean you stop voting or be corrupt to vote…" He added.

Many students at the dialogue raised the issue of youth being poor in the country, a reason they have been manipulated by self seeking politicians to vote for them.

"Why are we running from the fact? The fact is the youth are poor and so there is no way we can fail to be used by money loaded politicians...we money to survive." said Lukwago, a Kampala International University student

University Forum on Governance (UNIFOG) is a Makerere University initiative intended to engage the voice of the youth and the academia of the country into politics.