By Francis Jjunju and Ben Musanje
Kituo cha Katiba: Eastern African Centre for Constitutional Development (KcK) in partnership with the Open Society Initiative for Eastern Africa (OSIEA) in their preliminary findings on a research project about the political settlement in Uganda reveals that over 90% want Uganda to organize a national dialogue to address the political challenge that is said to be threatening the country’s future.
So far the areas respondents from the districts of Central region say Uganda’s future is in balance given the current economic hardship and security threats not forgetting anger which is haboured by many as a result discontent with the political leadership.
According to Prof. Frederick Jjuuko from the School of Law Makerere University, many Ugandans do not believe that President Museveni and Dr. Kizza Besigye can solve Uganda’ s problem, but rather an independent gathering of all groups represented free from foreign influence, with a clear guideline and an implementation committee can help Uganda realize this dream.
Prof. Jjuuko however said there is fear that some participants in the previous conferences like the Arusha, UNLF and Nairobi conferences are still exist and might sabotage the intended mission of the demanded conference for selfish interests.
Dr. Sam Tindifa from the Faculty of Law, at the Islamic University in Uganda, Mbale a partner in the same research said a law that will guide the national dialogue is important and advocacy but not relaying on a constitution like the one of 1995 which was made in the interest of NRM.
The research project that is aimed at producing founded proposals on the future of Uganda’s governance will cover the entire country to get at least a national representation.
This comes as Afro-barometer has also released a report showing that eight out of 10 people surveyed representing 84% Ugandans support the proposal to institute a national dialogue to resolve disagreements between the opposition and government over the 2016 election results.
Since January this year, the former Forum for Democratic Change (FDC) presidential candidate Dr Besigye has been telling media that he is open to political dialogue but that such talks should be mediated by a respected foreign mediator with capacity to enforce implementation of agreed terms which government has challenged many times.
Presenting a report in Kampala, the Afro-barometer National Coordinator Francis Kibirige says 82% Ugandans agree that in the interest of national unity, political parties that lost elections should accept the result even if they disagree with the outcomes.
The report further shows that 84% Ugandans support enactment of a law to discourage people who use forged qualifications from standing for elections.
However, the political activist Miria Matembe says the report has new surveys it has released since most of the results have been raised by politicians, public and civil society organizations.