Thursday, 24 November 2005

Week 3 in Uganda

M: The government of Uganda has put a ban on all talk surrounding Col. Dr. Kizza Besigye’s case (he is the potential leader of the opposition and main political threat to the current president). This means there will be no media debate, not talk shows, no demonstrations, no public rallies, and definitely no riots. We shall see…..

Besigye was taken to Court again today (Thursday, 23 November 2005) and talks of protests have surrounded the city since yesterday.

I went to my first UN OCHA (UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs) security meeting yesterday. It was very interesting but unfortunately I cannot give any details! Top secret!! ;)

The power has been going off quite frequently and for long periods of time (also reason why I have not been on the internet much).

Last week, at the bail hearing for the 22 PRA suspects, the Court was “invaded” by the Black Mamba Hit Squad. These “Men in Black” as they are called locally, were sent to re-arrest the 22 PRA suspects.

CHOGM (Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting; which is being held in Malta right now) is also debating whether Uganda should hold the bi-annual meeting in 2007, as a result of recent events.

I am witnessing interesting times for Uganda. The next few months should determine what the near future holds for the country. Tension is also elevated due to Presidential elections set for March 2006 and the fact that Museveni’s NRM government changed the Constitution so that he could run for a third term (not to mention the fact that he arrested the opposition leader). Politics does not mix well when all this is going on: plus a nineteen year insurgency by the LRA against the Government of Uganda, coupled with ICC indictments for the arrest of the top five LRA commanders. Wow! A lot for such a small, poor country. I am definitely happy I chose to write my Conflict and Sustainable Peace Masters thesis on this country!

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