By Dr. Muniini Mulera | Muntu’s North American Tour | A Fresh Voice For Change – Boston Sept 8th & Toronto Sept 14.

Posted September 6, 2013 by Ugandan Diaspora News Team in Events ~ 4,475 views


Dear Tingasiga — The disappointment with Ugandan politicians who dropped the ball after the heroic struggle of the 1980s has chilled the trust and hopes of citizens in their leaders. There is understandable cynicism in the land. The opposition’s call to arms, so to speak, is rebuffed with contemptuous disdain.

The bickering and pettiness that dominate the political discourse as opposition politicians put personal ambitions above the national interest reinforce the disillusionment. Faced with a sophisticated military regime that entrenches itself each passing day, with no sign of softening its grip on every facet of public life in Uganda, many have simply surrendered all hope for peaceful change.

This disillusionment is particularly deep among Ugandans in the Diaspora. The hopeful excitement for change that galvanized them to support the struggles of the opposition leaders back home now seem to be a distant memory.

One now meets stony silence or look warm response from colleagues who were pillars of our struggle for change a mere ten years ago. One understands their reticence to trust that Uganda can actually be redeemed by any living persons, least of all any politician.

However, all is not lost. A young generation of Ugandans in the Diaspora has renewed my hopes for a new army of volunteers with new ideas and energy that may yet save our country from the looming catastrophe.

Part of these young men and women’s enthusiasm seems to be a consequence of the rise of Maj. Gen. Mugisha Muntu to the presidency of the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC). While many of the folks in the Diaspora are disappointed by reports of bickering within the senior leadership of the FDC, they are very eager to throw their support behind Gen. Muntu in his quest to lead the transformation of Uganda.

A dynamic thirty-something Ugandan lady who works for a major international organization in Toronto told me last week that she was ready to mobilize support for Muntu, and even quit her job to work for him should he form his own political party.

When told that Muntu was resolutely committed to building the FDC into a winning and formidable force for change, the lady told me that she would withhold her judgment until she was persuaded that the party was “serious.”

Gen. Muntu will have an opportunity to persuade this lady and thousands of other Ugandans during his tour of North America that begins in Dallas, Texas this week. His first event will be an open town hall meeting on Thursday evening at the Dallas Omni Hotel, the venue of the Ugandan North American Association’s Silver Jubilee Convention.

Muntu, who will also participate in the UNAA Political Forum on September 1, will then travel to Boston, Massachusetts, home to one of the largest and most politically diverse Ugandan communities in North America.

After attending Sunday morning worship at the New Life International Christian Center in Medford, Massachusetts on September 8, Gen. Muntu will hold a town hall meeting at the Hilton Garden Inn in Waltham, Massachusetts starting at 4 pm.

He ends his North American tour with a town hall meeting in the Memorial Hall at the North York Civic Centre, 
5110 Yonge Street, Toronto on Saturday September 14. The Toronto event, which is being organized by Ugandan-Canadians for Democratic Change (UCDC), is expected to offer the audience an opportunity to spell out conditions for their involvement and support for the renewed effort for change in Uganda.

What should Muntu’s audiences in Dallas, Boston and Toronto expected to see and hear? Will he dispel the image that some have of him as being too much of a gentleman to wrestle with Gen. Yoweri Museveni, a formidable opponent who will fight tooth and nail to retain his grip on power?

Will Muntu be a cerebral but dull intellectual who is not able to rally the troops to fight for their country’s soul? Or will he dispel the image that has been carefully crafted by his opponents within his party and by the NRM spin masters?

I had the opportunity during the first week of July to watch Maj. Gen. Mugisha Muntu, the President of the Forum for Democratic Change, interacting with people from three communities.

At each stop Muntu, who was embarking on a countrywide tour that would see him visit every county in Uganda, engaged in one of the most respectful, honest and passionate conversations between politician and citizens I have ever witnessed.

Rather than offer promises of instant solutions to people’s problems, Muntu told his listeners that change would demand everyone’s sacrifice and participation.

His audiences in North America can expect to hear a fresh voice for change, from a man who will tell them that their hopes will only be realized if they step up to the plate and work with him to realize their dream.

Without doubt Muntu offers those who had given up on Uganda renewed hope for real change, not as a one-man act but a collective effort, founded in a deep faith in Ugandans’ right to genuine freedom and collective prosperity.

About the Author

Ugandan Diaspora News Team

Ugandan Diaspora News Online is an independent, non political news portal primarily aimed at serving Ugandans who work and reside outside Uganda. Our aim is to be a one stop shop for everything Ugandan and the celebration of our Ugandan heritage.


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