Why Museveni wants to rule Uganda for life

If President Yoweri Museveni wins the next presidential poll, his tenure will potentially extend to 40 years.

The executive committee of Uganda’s ruling National Resistance Movement has already endorsed Mr Museveni as its candidate in the 2021 poll.

Museveni, 74, has held office since 1986 when he took power after a five-year guerrilla war, making him one of Africa’s longest-ruling leaders.

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In 2017 parliament, which is controlled by the ruling party, voted to remove a 75-year age cap on the presidency that would have barred him from standing again. It was the second time parliament changed laws to clear the way for him to seek re-election.

In 2005 a two-term limit clause that stopped him from seeking re-election was also deleted from the constitution.

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The NRM executive committee’s endorsement typically results in Museveni being hand-picked by the party delegates’ conference as a sole candidate, sparing him competition in a primary party poll. The conference is scheduled for November.

He has not stated whether he intends to stand in the next election, but is widely expected to.

One of his opponents in the next polls could be singer and lawmaker Bobi Wine, whose real name is Robert Kyagulanyi, who has rattled officials with his fast-growing support base.

Kyagulanyi’s following has ballooned since he joined parliament nearly two years ago, drawn by his criticism of Museveni’s long rule and government excesses through his lyrics.

 Kyagulanyi told CNN television this month he was mulling running for president in 2021.

Critics argue Mr Museveni may be grooming his son for a presidential take over after promoting him through the army ranks to become the second top most senior commander and he may not want an enemy to succeed him.

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