President Yoweri Kaguta Tibuhurwa Museveni takes over Uganda – January 1986 - President Yoweri Kaguta Tibuhurwa Museveni takes over Uganda – January 1986

Tito Okello, opened negotiations with Museveni’s insurgent forces and pledged to improve respect for human rights, end tribal rivalry, and conduct free and fair elections. In the meantime, massive human rights violations continued as the Okello government carried out a brutal counter-insurgency in an attempt to destroy the NRA’s support. Negotiations between the Okello government and the NRA were conducted in Nairobi in the fall of 1985, with Kenyan President Daniel Arap Moi seeking a ceasefire and a coalition government in Uganda. Although agreeing in late 1985 to a ceasefire, the NRA continued fighting, and seized Kampala and the country in late January 1986, forcing President Tito Okello’s forces to flee north into Sudan. Museveni’s forces organized a government with Museveni as president.

Since assuming power, the government dominated by the political grouping created by Museveni and his followers, the National Resistance Movement (NRM or the “Movement”), has largely put an end to the human rights abuses of earlier governments, initiated substantial political liberalization and general press freedom, and instituted broad economic reforms after consultation with the International Monetary Fund, World Bank, and donor governments.  In northern areas such as Acholi land, there had been armed resistance against the government since 1986. Acholi-based rebel groups included the Uganda People’s Democratic Army and the Holy Spirit Movement that have long been extinguished. The last rebel group is the Lord’s Resistance Army that was headed by Joseph Kony, whose insurgency carried out widespread abduction of children to forcibly recruit them or use them as sex slaves was finally defeated in 2013.

August 2005, Parliament voted to change the constitution to lift presidential term limits, allowing Museveni to run for a third term if he wished to do so. In a referendum in July 2005, 92.5 percent of voters supported the restoration of multiparty politics, thereby scrapping the no-party or “movement” system. Kizza Besigye, Museveni’s political rival, returned from exile in October 2005 and was a presidential candidate during the 2006 elections. In the same month, Obote died in South Africa. Museveni won the February 2006 presidential election.

On 11 July 2010, Al-Shabaab bombers killed 74 people in Kampala. Al-Shabaab, an Islamist militia based in Somalia that has ties to al-Qaeda, claimed responsibility for the blasts as retaliation for Ugandan support for AMISOM. On 13 September 2014, the Ugandan security and intelligence services, with the assistance of the United States, identified and foiled a major terrorist attack in Kampala. They recovered suicide vests, improvised explosive devices, and small arms, and they arrested 19 people who were suspected to have had links to al-Shabaab. This attack could have been as substantial as the attack in Nairobi during the previous year at Westgate Mall. Instead, it was a failure for al-Shabaab.

The 2016 Ugandan general election was held in Uganda on 18 February 2016 to elect the president and parliament. Polling day was declared a national holiday. Ahead of the election, Museveni described the formation of an East African Federation uniting Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya, Rwanda, Burundi, and South Sudan as “the number one target that we should aim at.” In September 2018 a committee was formed to begin the process of drafting a regional constitution, and a draft constitution for a confederation is set to be written by 2021, with implementation of the confederacy by 2023.

In conclusion, by 2020 President Yoweri Tibuhurwa Kaguta Museveni would have ruled Uganda for 5 terms starting 1986. His major achievements have been, restoring peace and security throughout Uganda, massive infrastructural developments in terms of roads; he is credited for building the Entebbe express way, Northern bypass, Southern bypass among a myriad of other road infrastructure. He has also pushed for the construction of hospitals including massive renovations at Mulago Hospital that has since expanded to having the best neonatal ward in the region. He also boasts of introducing free universal primary and secondary education, boosting the agricultural, manufacturing and mining industries, improved state leadership, governance and revenue mobilization, strengthened Uganda`s foreign policy and tightened Uganda`s economic & political viability within the East African Region.

In 2021 President Yoweri Tibuhurwa Kaguta Museveni will be sworn into his 6th term of Presidency after his sweeping victory in the 2020 elections that saw him win by 59% of the public vote. He was declared the President elect by the Electoral Commission on 16th January 2021.

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