President Yoweri Museveni has warned those who harbor intentions of destabilizing Uganda that they stand no chance to survive.
Without elaborating who the warning was aimed at, the President said “those who want to destabilize our country do not know our capacity”.
Museveni was quoted by his Senior Press Secretary, Don Wanyama as having said during his speech on Saturday as he commissioned five factories in Mukono.
“Those who want to destabilize our country do not know our capacity. It is very big. Once we mobilise, you can’t survive.” President Museveni is quoted as having said.
According to Wanyama, the President made the statement as an assurance to investors that Uganda is secure.
However, the timing of the statement is not one that can be overlooked especially given that he has most recently emphasized a narrative about some elements that intend to distabilize Uganda.
He sounded the warning on the same day Rwanda’s President, Paul Kagame commented on the diplomatic row between Uganda and Rwanda. He accused Uganda of giving safe haven to elements within the RNC, a group of Rwandans dissidents considered by Kagame as rebellious to Rwanda. He said the Ugandan government has given a leeway to RNC elements to recruit in Uganda.
He was addressing over 350 leaders during the 16th National Leadership Retreat known as ‘Umwiherero’ held in Gabiro, in Gatsibo District.
Kagame used his address on Saturday to reassure those considered enemies of Rwanda that no one can bring him or Rwanda to its knees.
“You can do harm to me – sometime you can succeed. But there is one thing that is impossible to me and to my country. No one anywhere can bring me to my knees. I don’t think our country will ever be brought to its knees”.
To those keen on the recent developments between the two countries, the pronouncements made on Saturday appear to point to aggression and a show of might. Far from the appeals for diplomatic mechanisms that many observers have proposed in the wake of fresh misunderstandings between Uganda and Rwanda.
Weeks ago, President Museveni made similar statements while presiding over the Tarehe Sita celebrations.
He said “Nobody can disturb our peace”.
“Anyone who thinks of destabilizing Uganda will destroy himself; the UPDF is strong and well equipped to secure Uganda from many forces of destabilization,” Museveni said.
The comment followed unprecedented arrests and deportations of Senior Managers at telecom giant, MTN Uganda. The deported officials included Anne Tabula, a Rwandan national who was working as the General Manager for Sales and Distribution. Security agencies said the deported staff had been engaged in acts intended to undermine national security.
Neither the security agencies nor President Museveni has since come out to explain which external force was behind the plot to undermine national security. However, sources familiar with details on why Tabura was deported told this news website that she created several mobile money outlets to facilitate undercover operations whose goal was to destabilize Uganda.
At a separate occasion, Don William Nabasa, the Commander of Special Forces Command (SFC) similary made statements alluding to external forces that was to topple Museveni and disorganize Uganda.
“External forces are looking and they don’t want us to develop. We have the oil here, beauty of the Country, stability, development, and above all a precious leader. They think, may be, if they get the precious leader out, there will be disorganization,” he said.
“They won’t come physically, but if they come here, it will be the best because we are very ready for them. Unfortunately they will not come. They will send money and people like the ones of late being deported, to mobilize the youth because the youth are very easy to convince,” he added.
All these hints from Museveni and Uganda’s security establishments tell of a particular external force (s) and preparedness for the worst case scenario – military intervention.
President Museveni is yet to officially respond to claims raised by Rwanda. He, last week, directed Ugandan government officials to desist from responding to Rwandan officials’ accusations against Uganda in the media.
This week, Uganda’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Sam Kutesa described as false allegations that Rwandan nationals are harrased in Uganda and that Rwanda’s trade (cargo transiting through Uganda) has been sabotaged.