Holding On To Power: Africa’s Longest-Serving Leaders

A photo collage of Equatorial Guinea’s Teodoro Obiang Nguema; Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni and Cameroonian President Paul Biya. 

 

After three decades in power, Chad’s President Idriss Deby Itno died on Tuesday from wounds suffered on the battlefield, the army said in a shock announcement just a day after the 68-year-old was re-elected to a sixth term.

Here are some of Africa’s other longest-serving leaders, some of whom change the constitution, crush the opposition and use fear and violence to maintain their grip on power.

 

– More than 30 years –

Equatorial Guinea’s Teodoro Obiang Nguema is Africa’s longest-serving leader, still in power after 41 years. He deposed his uncle in a 1979 coup, and became “the country’s god” with “all power over men and things”, state radio said.

Obiang, the world’s most enduring non-royal head of state, was last re-elected in 2016.

Cameroonian President Paul Biya has been in office for more than 38 years. He was re-elected in 2018 for a seventh term.

Congo President Denis Sassou Nguesso has held power for a total of 36 years and was re-elected for a fourth term after elections on March 21.

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni, in power since 1986, was re-elected in January with his main rival Bobi Wine claiming the election was rigged.

In southern Africa’s tiny Eswatini, formerly Swaziland, King Mswati III is the continent’s last absolute monarch. He ascended the throne in 1986.

 

– Even longer –

Ethiopia’s late emperor Haile Selassie holds the record for the longest time in power on the African continent. After reigning for 44 years, he was ousted in 1974.

Libya’s Moamer Kadhafi, who ruled with an iron fist for nearly 42 years, was killed in 2011 after an armed rebellion that later turned into a civil war.

Omar Bongo Ondimba governed oil-rich Gabon for more than 41 years until his death from cancer in 2009.

Angola’s Jose Eduardo dos Santos stepped down in September 2017 having led his oil-rich country for 38 years.

Zimbabwe’s former president Robert Mugabe, who died in 2019, was in power for 37 years.

AFP

Museveni Declared Winner Of Uganda Election

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni shows his ink-marked thumb after casting his ballot at the Kaaroh high school polling station in Kiruhura, Uganda, on January 14 ,2021. Ugandans voted on January 14, 2021 under heavy security and an internet blackout in an election pitting veteran leader Yoweri Museveni against a former popstar after one of the bloodiest campaigns in years.
Badru KATUMBA / AFP

 

Uganda’s Yoweri Museveni has won a sixth term in office, extending his 35-year rule after an election which took place under heavy security and an internet blackout, and which his main rival said was marred by fraud and violence. 

The 76-year-old leader, who took power in 1986, is one of Africa’s longest serving presidents, and was accused of crushing the opposition and media ahead of one of the most violent election campaigns in recent years.

Museveni won with 58.6 percent of votes, seeing off a stiff battle from the former ragga singer Bobi Wine, 38, whose turn to politics fired up a youthful population where three quarters are under 30 years old.

Wine was under heavy guard at his home on the outskirts of Kampala as results were announced, with his party saying he was under “effective house arrest”, while the government said it was merely providing him with security.

Supporters of incumbent Ugandan Presdent Yoveri Museveni celebrate in the streets of Kampala on January 16, 2021. Badru KATUMBA / AFP
Supporters of incumbent Ugandan Presdent Yoveri Museveni celebrate in the streets of Kampala on January 16, 2021. Badru KATUMBA / AFP

 

The singer-turned-MP was among 10 opposition candidates and came second with 34.8 percent of the votes.

“The electoral commission declares Yoweri Museveni… elected President of the republic of Uganda,” said election commission chairman Justice Simon Mugenyi Byabakama.

READ ALSO: Ugandan Opposition Candidate Bobi Wine Says His Home Is ‘Under Siege’

He said turnout was 57.22 of almost 18 million registered voters.

Byabakama urged the population to “remain calm and accept the outcome of these elections” while reminding those celebrating to be mindful of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Security forces poured into the streets of Kampala after the announcement, with one soldier atop an armoured personnel carrier urging citizens to maintain social distancing as a helicopter buzzed ahead.

 This combination of pictures created on January 11, 2021 shows Uganda's President Yoweri Museveni (L) waiting to welcome President of Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) Felix Tshisekedi prior to his arrival at the state house in Entebbe, Uganda, on November 9, 2019, and Ugandan musician-turned-politician Robert Kyagulanyi (R), also known as Bobi Wine, waiting for news on his producer and friend Dan Magic, who was severly injured by teargas cannisters and rubber bullets used by police in order to disperse crowds in Kayunga, Uganda on December 1, 2020. Sumy Sadurni / AFP
This combination of pictures created on January 11, 2021 shows Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni (L) and Ugandan musician-turned-politician Robert Kyagulanyi (R), also known as Bobi Wine, on December 1, 2020. Sumy Sadurni / AFP

 

Images on state television showed jubilant Museveni supporters in his home district waving flags and cheering, while soldiers in the capital helped marshall motorcycle drivers for a parade — handing them yellow vests and Museveni posters.

The election took place after one of the most violent campaigns in years, with harassment and arrests of the opposition, attacks on the media and the deaths of at least 54 people.

Wine alleged widespread fraud such as ballot box stuffing and said his party agents had in some places been beaten and chased away from polling stations.

“Whatever is being declared is a complete sham, we reject it and we dissociate ourselves with it,” he said on Friday.

‘We don’t control them’

Wine’s home remained sealed off by soldiers and police on Saturday, after he told AFP Friday evening that security forces had breached the fence around it and he felt under “siege”.

The army’s deputy spokesman Deo Akiiki said the soldiers were there for “his own security and the security of people around him”.

However the spokesman for Wine’s National Unity Platform (NUP), Joel Ssenyonyi told AFP Bobi Wine “is under effective house arrest”.

“People are angry because their vote has been stolen. They don’t need me or Bobi Wine to tell them to get angry… Even we can’t control them.”

Musician turned politician Robert Kyagulanyi, aka Bobi Wine, addresses the media at his home in Wakiso, Uganda, on January 8, 2021 to announce his plans to take President Yoweri Museveni to the International Court Commission (ICC), accusing him of crimes against humanity over the past few months. SUMY SADURNI / AFP
Musician turned politician Robert Kyagulanyi, aka Bobi Wine, addresses the media at his home in Wakiso, Uganda, on January 8, 2021 to announce his plans to take President Yoweri Museveni to the International Court Commission (ICC), accusing him of crimes against humanity over the past few months. SUMY SADURNI / AFP

 

“The election was not fair,” complained 31-year-old carpenter Dennis Agaba, disappointed at Wine’s loss.

However 35-year-old electrician Dennis Tusiime was happy with the result.

“My grandfather told me about the old regimes,” he said. “He is doing his work. I am very, very happy.”

Tibor Nagy, the top US diplomat for Africa, said on Twitter that the vote was “fundamentally flawed”, citing the denial of accreditation to election observers and “violence and harassment of opposition figures”.

The internet has been down for four days, and government spokesman Ofwono Opondo said the measure was taken due to “abuse, misuse, disinformation, fake news with the overall objective of undermining the integrity of the electoral process including the results… and possibly to cause destabilisation”.

He said the internet would be restored once the threat had passed, possibly on Monday morning.

35 years of Museveni

Museveni has ruled Uganda without pause since seizing control in 1986, when he helped to end years of tyranny under Idi Amin and Milton Obote. He is one of Africa’s longest serving leaders.

Once hailed for his commitment to good governance, the former rebel leader has crushed any opposition and tweaked the constitution to allow himself to run again and again.

An old poster of Uganda's incumbent President Yoweri Museveni is seen on a an utility pole on the eve of Presidential and general elections on January 13, 2021, in Kampala, Uganda. YASUYOSHI CHIBA / AFP
An old poster of Uganda’s incumbent President Yoweri Museveni is seen on a an utility pole on the eve of Presidential and general elections on January 13, 2021, in Kampala, Uganda. YASUYOSHI CHIBA / AFP

 

And for many in the country, where the average age is 16 and most have known only one president, Museveni’s glory days are no longer relevant or sufficient.

Wine, with his humble origins in a slum and popular songs about economic and social injustice, struck a chord with young people, but observers said the odds were stacked against him with Museveni’s powerful grip on the state.

His NUP is however on track to see his newly formed NUP become the main opposition party in parliament, notably winning eight of nine constituencies in the capital Kampala.

 

AFP

Uganda Decides: Museveni Closing In On Victory, Bobi Wine Alleges Fraud

This combination of pictures created on January 11, 2021 shows
Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni (L) waiting to welcome President of Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) Felix Tshisekedi prior to his arrival at the state house in Entebbe, Uganda, on November 9, 2019, and Ugandan musician-turned-politician Robert Kyagulanyi (R), also known as Bobi Wine,. (Photo by Sumy Sadurni / AFP)

 

Uganda’s Yoweri Museveni looked headed for a sixth term as president with election results Saturday placing him firmly ahead of his main rival, who has cried fraud and whose home has been put under heavy guard.

The country’s election commission announced that with 86.7 percent of polling stations reporting results, Museveni had 58.8 percent of votes, while former popstar Bobi Wine had 34.2 percent.

Final results are expected by Saturday afternoon.

Wine, 38, meanwhile was on track to see his newly formed National Unity Platform (NUP) become the main opposition party in Parliament, notably winning eight of nine constituencies in the capital Kampala.

The poll followed one of the most violent campaigns in years, with harassment and arrests of the opposition, attacks on the media and the deaths of at least 54 people.

 

READ ALSO: Ugandan Opposition Candidate Bobi Wine Says His Home Is ‘Under Siege’

 

Thursday’s election took place in apparent calm, but under the oppressive presence of soldiers and riot police and an internet blackout which has now entered its fourth day.

However Wine has alleged widespread fraud such as ballot box stuffing and said his party agents had in some places been beaten and chased away from polling stations.

“Whatever is being declared is a complete sham, we reject it and we dissociate ourselves with it,” he said on Friday.

Wine, whose real name is Robert Kyagulanyi, promised to provide video evidence once the internet was restored.

Election commission chairman Justice Simon Mugenyi Byabakama said “the onus is on candidate Kyagulanyi to show how votes are rigged.”

On Friday late afternoon Wine told AFP he felt under threat as soldiers surrounded his home

“They jumped over my fence. They came inside my compound. They are here right now. I don’t know why they’re here. But I’m imagining they are here to harm me. I feel threatened,” said the 38-year-old, who described the invasion as unprecedented and “a siege”.

The army’s deputy spokesman Deo Akiiki said the soldiers were there to provide security and had stopped three people who tried to “access the house”.

Police have advised people not to go out to celebrate or protest when results are announced citing draconian Covid-19 regulations which have regularly been used to crack down on the opposition.

 

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni shows his ink-marked thumb after casting his ballot at the Kaaroh high school polling station in Kiruhura, Uganda, on January 14 ,2021. Ugandans voted on January 14, 2021 under heavy security and an internet blackout in an election pitting veteran leader Yoweri Museveni against a former popstar after one of the bloodiest campaigns in years.
Badru KATUMBA / AFP

– 35 years of Museveni –

Museveni has ruled Uganda without pause since seizing control in 1986, when he helped to end years of tyranny under Idi Amin and Milton Obote. He is one of Africa’s longest serving leaders.

Once hailed for his commitment to good governance, the former rebel leader has crushed any opposition and tweaked the constitution to allow himself to run again and again.

And for many in the country, where the median age is 16 and most have known only one president, Museveni’s glory days are no longer relevant or sufficient.

Wine, with his humble origins in a slum and popular songs about economic and social injustice, struck a cord with the youth, but observers say the odds were stacked against him with Museveni’s powerful grip on the state.

The election took place with no major internation observer mission aside from the African Union, with the United States saying too many of its staff were denied permission to monitor the vote.

-AFP

Ugandan Opposition Candidate Bobi Wine Says His Home Is ‘Under Siege’

Musician-turned-politician Robert Kyagulanyi also known as Bobi Wine (2nd L), and his wife Barbara Itungo Kyagulanyi (L) leave a polling station in Magere, Uganda, on January 14, 2021, after having cast their ballots. PHOTO: YASUYOSHI CHIBA / AFP

 

Ugandan opposition presidential candidate Robert Kyagulanyi, also known as Bobi Wine, says his home is “under siege” from the military.

He made this announcement in a Tweet via his official handle on Friday.

“The military has jumped over the fence and has now taken control of our home,” he said in a tweet on Friday.

He added in another that “None of these military intruders is talking to us. We are in serious trouble. We are under siege.”

Wine had earlier on Friday claimed victory in the presidential elections, rejecting as a “complete sham” early results that gave President Yoweri Museveni a wide lead.

The 38-year-old former singer said his party’s polling agents were beaten and chased away in parts of northern and western Uganda, that ballot boxes were opened and stuffed, and that some voters were only given ballots for the parliamentary election.

76-year-old Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni is seeking a sixth term after almost four decades in power, and the youthful Wine has emerged as his main rival in a country where most have known only one president

35 Years Under Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni

President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda

 

President Yoweri Museveni, who is seeking re-election in Uganda Thursday, took power at the head of a bush army in 1986 and has ruled ever since, making him one of the world’s longest-serving leaders.

Rebel to Ruler

As a young rebel leader, Museveni helps topple dictator Idi Amin in 1979 before retreating to the bush to wage a guerrilla war against his repressive successor, Milton Obote.

Shortly after ousting the government and taking power in 1986, Museveni declares: “The problem of Africa in general, and Uganda in particular, is not the people, but leaders who want to overstay in power.”

Museveni receives early praise for returning some stability and prosperity to Uganda, which after years of coups, violent tyrants and civil war is among the world’s poorest countries.

He is returned to office in 1996 in the country’s first direct presidential election since independence from Britain in 1962.

Darling of the West

Uganda’s economy grows rapidly in the 1990s as Museveni undertakes sweeping reforms, pleasing foreign donors and financial lenders keen to sponsor a burgeoning African success story.

Museveni’s early successes combating the HIV/AIDS epidemic and reducing poverty burnish this image in the West as a modern African leader committed to good governance.

But his moral standing takes a particular hit when Uganda and Rwanda invade Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) twice in the late 1990s. Both armies are later charged in The Hague with looting Congo’s resources, killing and torturing civilians and using child soldiers.

Museveni would also be accused of supporting rebels in the region — an allegation that would resurface time and time again during his long tenure.

Broken promises

In 2001, Museveni defeats his main opposition rival Kizza Besigye at the ballot box, and commits to standing down at the next election.

But instead, he changes the constitution in 2005 to do away with presidential term limits.

The following year — his 20th in power — he defeats a popular Besigye again in a vote marred by violence and irregularities.

That same year, the Lord’s Resistance Army is largely driven out of northern Uganda after a grinding and brutal 20-year insurgency — although Ugandan troops hunt the rebel leadership in Sudan, DRC and Central African Republic for another decade.

Museveni pleases Washington — a close friend which has provided Uganda billions in foreign aid — by sending troops to serve under the US in Iraq and to Somalia, where they form the backbone of an African Union mission to confront the Al-Qaeda linked jihadists Al-Shabaab.

Drift toward autocracy

In 2010 the UN accuses Ugandan troops of war crimes in eastern Congo. Kampala threatens to withdraw its peacekeepers from Somalia, South Sudan, Darfur, Ivory Coast and East Timor — a trump card it would use again in future when accused of further meddling in DRC.

Museveni wins a fourth term in 2011 over Besigye, who again decries the vote as a sham. Not long after, security forces are deployed to violently suppress major street protests as food and fuel prices soar and the economy teeters.

Ugandan troops fight alongside South Sudan’s forces as the new country descends into civil war in 2013. At home, the crackdown on critics intensifies, with radio stations taken off air and newspapers raided for airing suggestions Museveni is grooming his son for succession.

In 2014, Museveni signs a controversial anti-homosexual bill into law, drawing resounding criticism from around the globe, and attracting US sanctions and a freeze on EU donor funds.

– President for life –
“I am not power-hungry, but mission-hungry” Museveni said in 2015, describing the economic transformation of Uganda as his only purpose, and vowing to return to cattle-keeping should he lose the election the following year.

But he won that, too, and proceeded in 2017 to change the constitution once more. This time he removed age limits for presidential candidates, clearing his path to run for a sixth term in 2021, aged 76, and reinforcing fears he plans to rule for life.

However, the veteran leader faces an energised campaign by a young opposition upstart called Bobi Wine, a musician-turned-MP who openly calls Museveni a dictator, and blames the endemic corruption under his rule for contributing to Uganda’s high youth unemployment and bleak economic outlook.

Museveni, whose increasingly violent reprisals against Wine have drawn global condemnation, has accused outsiders and “homosexuals” of backing the neophyte opposition leader, and is expected to win the January 14 vote that observers say will be neither free nor fair.

Ugandan Pop-Star MP Bobi Wine Arrested During Office Raid

Bobi Wine, whose real name is Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu, says President Museveni is attempting to derail his bid to stand in polls scheduled for 2021.

 

Ugandan security forces detained pop star-turned-politician Bobi Wine on Wednesday during a raid of the presidential aspirant’s offices in the capital Kampala, his lawyer said.

Wine, an opposition MP whose real name is Robert Kyagulanyi, has previously been arrested numerous times as he has rattled the ruling party of President Yoweri Museveni, who has ruled the East African nation since 1986.

Wine’s lawyer Anthony Wameli said his client was seized on Wednesday at the offices of his opposition party, the National Unity Platform.

“The police and the army raided the office of NUP, sealed off the premises and all the roads leading to the place before detaining Bobi Wine and other party officials,” Wameli told AFP.

“This is despicable and an attack on democracy by the partisan police and the army,” he said. The reason for the raid was unknown but “politics cannot be ruled out”, he added.

Earlier in the day, Wine tweeted that the police and military had “broken into offices and taken away valuable documents”.

“The partisanship of security agencies ahead of the election is stinking,” he said, adding that “some comrades have been injured”.

Uganda police spokesman Patrick Onyango confirmed there was “an ongoing operation at NUP offices”.

“Our officers have deployed at the premises. Details of the operation will be given later,” he added, refusing to comment on the reports that Wine had been detained.

The media was kept away from the NUP’s offices and surrounding streets on Wednesday, but armed officers could be seen through the window, according to an AFP journalist.

Wine, 38, has become a popular figure among the youth in a country where the median age is less than 16.

After nearly a quarter century in power, the 76-year-old Museveni is the only president most have known.

Wine, nicknamed the “Ghetto President”, announced last year he would challenge Museveni in 2021’s presidential election.

But since becoming an MP in 2017, he has been routinely arrested and put under house arrest, his concerts banned and public rallies dispersed with teargas.

Museveni, one of Africa’s longest-serving rulers, had the constitution amended for a second time to allow him to run a sixth time in 2021.

 

-AFP

Uganda Plans Elections In Early 2021 But No Rallies

A file photo of Ugandan president, Yoweri Museveni
A file photo of Ugandan president, Yoweri Museveni

 

Uganda’s election commission on Tuesday published a roadmap for presidential and legislative elections in early 2021, assuaging fears the coronavirus pandemic would force a delay.

But a plan to ban rallies and gatherings during the campaign drew a rebuke from a leading opposition politician, who said it was designed to favour longtime President Yoweri Museveni.

A calendar posted on the commission’s Twitter account Tuesday called for voting to take place between January 10 and February 8 next year, with “exact polling dates to be appointed in due course”.

That timeline is in line with the constitution.

In an interview with a private television station last month, Museveni, in power since 1986, had seemed to raise the possibility of a delay, saying it would be “madness to continue with elections when the virus is around”.

Uganda has officially recorded 724 COVID-19 cases and no deaths.

“The elections will go ahead as planned. This will be early January and February next year,” Justice Simon Mugenyi Byabakama, the election commission chairman, told AFP Tuesday.

“There were fears that the elections will be postponed due to COVID-19, but the constitution demands that we must hold the polls at a specific time and we can’t do away with that,” he said.

But Mugenyi also said there would be “no mass rallies and public gatherings” and that candidates would “use the media such as radios and TVs to campaign”.

Opposition leader Bobi Wine, a popular singer whose real name is Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu, said those rules would place an undue burden on opposition politicians who struggle to secure media access.

“The roadmap makes it harder for opposition voices to be heard,” Wine told AFP.

“Whenever we show up at radio stations, we are stopped by the police from going on air. The same thing will happen this time and the airwaves will be used by Museveni and his supporters to campaign,” he said.

Wine, who has been subject to repeated arrests, is expected to run against Museveni, who would be seeking a sixth term.

Court Backs Ugandan President’s Sixth Term Bid

Museveni
Uganda President, Yoweri Museveni

 

A court in Uganda cleared the way for President Yoweri Museveni, 73, to run for a sixth term when it upheld a constitutional change that scrapped presidential age limits on Thursday.

Previously, the law required presidential contenders to be under the age of 75 and would have blocked Museveni, president since 1986, from seeking re-election in 2021.

But a bill removing the limit was introduced in parliament in September and signed into law in December, sparking demonstrations and outcry from the opposition which accuses Museveni of a power grab.

A group of opposition figures brought the judicial review heard by judges in a marathon session.

A majority of the constitutional court judges, sitting in the remote city of Mbale some 225 kilometres (140 miles) east of the capital Kampala, ruled in favour of lifting the age cap for presidential contenders.

But they struck down lawmakers’ efforts to extend their terms of office from five to seven years which would have pushed elections back to 2023, with one judge describing their effort as “selfish”.

The judges also decided that an attempt to reintroduce presidential term limits — scrapped with the reintroduction of multi-party politics in 2005 when the constitution was last amended — breached parliamentary procedure. They ruled the bid invalid, paving the way for a Museveni life presidency.

Museveni, who seized power at the head of a rebel army in 1986, once said leaders who “overstayed” were the root of Africa’s problems.

However while running for a fifth term in 2016, he said it was not the right time for him to leave as he still had work to do.

AFP

Uganda Declares National Mourning For Accident Victims

Museveni
Uganda President, Yoweri Museveni

 

Ugandan President, Yoweri Museveni, on Sunday declared three days of mourning after dozens died when a speeding bus hit a tractor at night and then ploughed into a truck.

The Red Cross put the toll at 48 dead, including 16 children, but police said 22 died and 14 were injured.

The accident was one of the deadliest in Uganda in recent years and happened in heavy rain on Friday night in Kiryandongo, 220 kilometres (140 miles) north of the capital Kampala.

“On the directive of HE President Museveni, the government is declaring three days of National Mourning,” starting Sunday, said a statement from Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda.

Initial investigations “point to speeding and vehicles in faulty mechanical conditions as the cause of the accident,” the statement said.

Families of the dead would each receive five million shillings (1,145 euros) while the injured would be paid three million shillings each.

More than 9,500 people died in road accidents in Uganda between 2015 and 2017, according to the transport ministry, with the situation worsening each year.

A UN report last year found 10 people die on the roads every day and that road accidents cost the country $1.2 billion (about one billion euros) — or five percent of Gross Domestic Product.

In 2015, Museveni sacked 900 officials in charge of building and making roads, holding them accountable for the abysmal state of the network.

AFP

Ugandan President, Museveni Fires Police Chief, Security Minister

Museveni
Uganda President, Yoweri Museveni

 

Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni has fired controversial police chief Kale Kayihura as well as the country’s security minister, a statement said Sunday.

Kayihura, a serving general, was once regarded as the most powerful military officer in the country but has recently fallen out of favour with Museveni who has ruled Uganda since he took power at the head of a rebel army in 1986.

Kayihura was appointed inspector general of police in 2005, the same year that a successful referendum was held on restoring multi-party democracy to the East African nation after a near 20-year ban on political parties.

His tenure as police chief was characterised by the proliferation of military-style units in the force and an increase in the perceived politicalisation of the police.

Since the March 2017 assassination of Felix Kaweesi — a senior policeman who had been viewed as his potential successor — Kayihura has come under pressure for failing to curb growing insecurity.

At least 23 women have been killed in unsolved murders around the capital, there has been a spate of deaths of foreign nationals and last week a woman from an influential family was killed after being held captive for three-weeks by kidnappers demanding a huge ransom.

The rising insecurity further discredited a police force widely viewed by the public to be incompetent and corrupt.

In the aftermath of Kaweesi’s assassination — which remains unsolved — Museveni said “criminals have infiltrated the police” and ordered Kayihura to “clean the police.”

Nevertheless, in May 2017 Kayihura’s contract was renewed.

Since then a rival security body — the Internal Security Organisation (ISO) — has made several high profile arrests of senior policemen viewed as being close to Kayihura who are accused of corruption and torture as well as gangsters who have admitted working with the police.

Some Ugandans have accused Kayihura of being too close to President Paul Kagame of Rwanda and there have been unsubstantiated accusations in the tabloid press that the pair have secretly plotted to overthrow Museveni.

In the same statement, Museveni fired the minister in charge of ISO — Henry Tumukunde — who has been openly critical of police failings.

Tumukunde and Kayihura have been engaged in a public tussle for over 15 years.

Both men are veterans of the “Liberation War” which brought Museveni to power

Tumukunde had previously fallen out with Museveni when, in 2003, he had opposed the removed of term limits. In 2005 he was forced to resign as an MP representing the army and was arrested.

The man in command of the soldiers who arrested him was Kayihura.

By 2016 Tumukunde was rehabilitated and Museveni appointed him security minister.

Okoth Ochola will replace Kayihura as Inspector General of Police and General Elly Tumwiine has been appointed security minister, according to the statement.

AFP

Uganda President, Museveni Visits Buhari In Abuja

President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda has paid a courtesy visit President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa.

The East African country President visited Nigeria with his wife, Janet and they were received by President Buhari and his wife, Aisha.

See Photos of the visit below…

African Leaders Meet For Giants Club Elephant Summit

Elephant SummitAfrican leaders will meet in Kenya on Friday to discuss how to save the continent’s elephants from extinction.

The inaugural summit of the so-called giants club will be led by the Kenyan President, Uhuru Kenyatta.

As well as heads of state, the conservation group will bring together business leaders and scientists.

Experts say Africa’s elephant population has fallen by 90% over the past century and warn that the animal could be extinct within decades.

Among those expected to attend the summit are Ugandan President, Yoweri Museveni and President Ali Bongo from the West African nation of Gabon.

After the summit, Kenya will set fire to nearly its entire confiscated stock of ivory, 105 tonnes, and equivalent to the tusks of more than 6,700 elephants.