According to the Democratic Party President Nobert Mao, politicial parties uninterested in dialogue have no love for Uganda.
The former presidential candidate made the claims today on the Brunch Talk Show with Olive Najjuma on RX Radio, asserting that parties that refused to join the Inter-party Organization Dialogue are controversial and self-seeking.
“It is hypocritical because they are in Parliament where dialogue takes place over laws. They’d only be serious if they had refused to take their parliamentary seats,” he said.
“I don’t see a reason why anyone would say no to dialogue when it's very essential. Imagine if Prime Minister Obote and Kabaka Muteesa 1 had had dialogue, we wouldn’t have had the 1966 crisis. We need dialogue and anybody who says no to it doesn’t love Uganda,” Mao added.
The DP President recently came out to publicly applaud the IPOD, noting that it has yielded good results. Asked what some of these were, he said that the platform necessitates promotion of democracy which has worked in several other countries.
“IPOD is not an idea unique to Uganda, it has worked in Malawi, Tanzania, Kenya and even Ghana. So we thought that there should be a platform to depolarize and detoxify the political environment. The purpose is for it to be a place where political opponents merge to address common problems and the first achievement was the very idea of sitting together to talk which is dialogue.”
He mentioned that the IPOD supports political parties financially to avoid the foreign dependence and involvement in local politics, in addition to addressing urgent crises.
“After this very violent 2021 election, there were kidnaps, unlawful arrests, false imprisonment and even outright murders. Through the IPOD we insisted to the President that there should be immediate release of those that were detained. We may be denounced for converging at the IPOD and accused of going there to take tea and photographs but I am sure the families of those young people were very happy with us,” he affirmed.
Mao believes that IPOD can be the nucleus for national dialogue because it must be centered around the national actors. “The religious and cultural leaders can have dialogue but until the political parties are involved, the impact of their dialogue will be very low. We may not have the entire potential for example the issue of the Public Management Act that restrains the power of the police to restrain people from gathering. So the potential of IPOD may not be fully achieved but only a fool will say it has done nothing,” he said.
In the same line of events, President Museveni during a meeting with the Secretary general of the IPOD remarked that funds given to parties such as the National Unity Platform (NUP) and Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) should be halted since they refused to take part in the Organization’s meetings. However, the parties declared that they didn’t need the funds which Mao contested.
“They are too greedy to decline any money, it is like a goat saying it has declined to eat banana leaves. I don’t know the treasurer of the NUP but I hope to see the person speak out because they provided their information about their bank accounts and that’s where the money was sent. They were interested and received the money. My only worry is that they might fail to account for it because they might spend it on lavish weddings, foreign trips and boat cruises.”
He continued that “hypocrites” who receive money from the government which is negotiated by the IPOD should be denounced, adding that the same parties received and accepted money issued by the 35 billion shillings supplementary budget appropriated as support to political parties under IPOD.
“So the IPOD spirit has grown and anybody who ignores it will become irrelevant in the future to Ugandans. Uganda is not about President Museveni, tomorrow he will not be there and then will their so-called struggle be put to an end? I think hypocrisy should be denounced.”
Brunch Talk is hosted by Olive Najjuma Monica every Saturday from Midday to 1pm on RX Radio.