#UgBlogWeek Elections Day 2: Fools of Hope

“You see people walking around freely,” he said. “I can sit here and say these things. That’s the genius of it all. It’s like that movie — what’s it called? — ‘The Truman Show.’ At what point will people know this is like a TV show, that it’s all being managed?”

Instead of Democracy, Uganda Moves Toward Dictatorship Light – The New York Times

#Topowa One of the commonest phrases that led up to this year’s elections was not something the government came up with, no, rather it was Civil Society Organisation – Citizen’s Coalition for Electoral Democracy in Uganda.

I cannot remember any time in the past ten years that the Electoral Commission did its job of civic education. Civic education has been relegated to CSO’s and NGO’s who don’t want the elections abused.

Topowa made us believe. We believed that perhaps there might be a better-organised election. I stood in the scorching sun, even though I was not feeling well, to cast my vote. I watched privileged Ugandans cut into the queue – those Ugandans who sat home, had breakfast, lunch and then decided to come bribe someone, vote and go back to their homes. It was annoying but I stayed my peace.

I had listened to the propaganda of the government on radio, funny enough it is most accepted on Christian radio. Had listened to Tamale Mirundi who sees no wrong in the violence against citizens and usually turns it onto the citizens. Had read with disbelief, the intellectual hogwash of Andrew Mwenda about our economy and had observed the silence of government-owned stations.

20 years ago, Uganda was like today’s Rwanda. So much hope. So much national unity. The president used a more humble tone. Nowadays he scares me, using proverbs like “Leopard’s something something”. I hoped he would earn the title “Father of the Nation” by establishing good systems and watching from the side as an advisor but that was me being foolish.

Leaving power might be too much to ask for. Even Binaisa in his short reign remarked, “E nteb’ewooma” meaning, power is sweet! Recently, he says he will leave power when East Africa Unites

Yesterday, when Besigye was arrested and the reason being “to inconvenience mobility”, it dawned on me that if I was expecting change this time around, I was fooled. CCEDU wasted our time, even the Electoral Commission wasted our time. The President has led by 62% since Thursday even if FDC’s tally centre says otherwise.

I suppose it’s not entirely a loss because we get to rid ourselves of some MPs. However when it comes to the actual seat of power, let’s not be fools of hope. We could as well decide Presidential elections stop to save our economy that burden.

P.S We’ve been warned by UCC that by accessing social media we are treason suspects. I wish this was democratic but let me not fool myself.


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