“Opposition using the ‘fictional primitive’ tribal talk as a political tool to hoodwink Ugandans.” SPA/PA Ruth Katushabe

The term tribalism has been a recurring utterance used by opposition politicians to paint a picture on how Gen Museveni runs his government by allegedly giving juicy opposition to people who come from the same area as him.

However according to Hon Ruth Katushabe the Senior Presidential Advisor on Political Affairs and Translations, the opposition is just trying to tarnish the name of the NRM led government to paint a picture as if all positions in government are being occupied by members of the 1st family and the Banyankore a tribe where President Museveni belongs.

Hon Katushabe while appearing on a radio political show on the 14th October 2023 said that the word tribalism in Uganda is misplaced and used in a wrong context because it doesn’t exist in the government that President Yoweri Museveni leads.

Hon Katushabe said that there is a tendency especially in Buganda Region where the opposition and public keep despising their own when appointed to big offices in government spreading a rumor that such people are only in offices without having power to take decisions and when the same positions are given out to people from other regions, the narrative is shifted to saying that President Museveni hates and sidelines Baganda.

“There is no tribalism in Uganda but people in central region have a habit of despising their own if put in positions of authority and then after blame Museveni for awarding the same positions to people from other regions.” Hon Katushabe said

The Senior Presidential Advisor also added that there is a time when Baganda dominated almost all top positions in government. Prof. Gilbert Bukenya as Vice President, Prof Apollo Nsibambi as Prime Minister, Rt Hon Edward Ssekandi as Speaker, Gen Katumba Wamala as IGP, Hon Bitamazire as Education Minister, among others but the opposition still complained that these were mere paper tigers without power but when the same positions were later awarded to people from other regions, the same opposition popularized a narrative that Baganda had been sidelined something which is not true.

She further added that she doesn’t understand why people think when it comes to Baganda, the offices have no power but when people from other regions come in, the positions are said to be powerful.

Hon Katushabe also raised a matter of the opposition always loves to generalize names of people from the west to paint a picture as if they all come from Kiruhura where President Museveni comes from.

She gave an example of the Electoral Commission Chairperson Justice Simon Byabakama being a munyoro, Gen Wilson Mbadi the CDF a Mukonjo from Kasese, Airlines ED Bamuturaki being a Mutoro, Baryomunsi Minister ICT being a Mukiga, among others but the opposition politicians generalize them as if they are all Banyankore from Kiruhura.

Hon Katushabe said that because the opposition lacks substantive issues to tell the electorate, they end up pegging themselves on the primitive tribal talk to seek sympathy and black mail the NRM government that has been on the forefront of fighting the bad politics of identity.