Uganda: 21 Presidents Lined for Museveni Inauguration

The Minister for Presidency Esther Mbayo said Tuesday, "21 heads of state both from Africa and the rest of the world have so far" confirmed their presence ahead of President Museveni's inauguration ceremony that's scheduled for May 12.

Ms Mbayo in the statement- said President Museveni had "extended invitation to 42 heads of state", from a pool of over 190 world over- to attend his swearing-in ceremony themed, "Securing your future."

Ms Mbayo, asserted that the ruling "National Resistance Movement (NRM) party's goal is to transform Uganda from a peasant to a modern, industrial and prosperous society by 2040."

She explained that the function to be held at Kololo Independence grounds on May 12, just over a week after Uganda confirmed its first Indian Covid-19 variant B.1.617- will be restricted to about 4,000 invited guests with limited fanfare.

"All invited guests will undergo Covid-19 tests. The National Organizing Committee has done all necessary measures to sit guests in such a manner that there will be proper social distancing," she said.

Mr Museveni, who has been President for 35 years now, was declared winner with 58 per cent of a poll that was marked with contestation and a violent electoral season that claimed over 55 lives, leaving hundreds arbitrarily behind bars.

"Where we have fallen short in our management of the electoral processes as government, we have put on all remedies and moved forward. No country under the sun has achieved 100% perfection in democracy," Ms Mbayo remarked in a May 4, 2021 press release.

Opposition figures maintain rhetoric that the election, now on course to extending the Museveni-NRM party rule to 40 years was irregular with security forces at the other end claiming they have intelligence that dissidents are planning mass protests and a counter swearing in ceremony on the day.

A group of people led by former presidential candidate Robert Kyagulanyi aka Bobi Wine have since urged masses to indispensably challenge Mr Museveni's re-election.

Mr Museveni, the linchpin of Uganda's longest serving political party, NRM, will take oath of allegiance as he aims to halt Uganda's soaring national debt burden that's now estimated to be over Shs65 trillion, coupled with inflation and an innumerably unemployed youth-dominated population amid Covid-19 disruptions.

According to Ms Mbayo, Uganda's economy has since "expanded by 16 times" and notched up "to Shs64 trillion (about $24billion)" under NRM's governance as opposed to "1986 where it was merely at $1.5billion."

However, experts say that Uganda's national debt is on trajectory to surpass the 50 per cent threshold in 2022.

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