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Mugisha Muntu: Politicizing Abiriga Murder Can Lead to War that May Leave Uganda in Ashes

Don't Rush to Conclusions: Mugisha Muntu Warns against Politicizing Abiriga Murder

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Former UPDF commander Maj Gen (Rtd) Mugisha Muntu has warned against politicizing the murder of Arua Municipality MP Ibrahim Abiriga, his brother Said Kongo Buga, and the spate of insecurity.

President Yoweri Museveni Abiriga’s murder was most probably a political assassination.

Abiriga was a staunch supporter of Museveni’s ruling National Resistance Movement (NRM).

His assassination has left many, including Museveni, worried about the risks of supporting a government has has been in power for over three-decades.

But Mugisha Muntu, a former army commander, and seen by some as a moderate opposition figure, has warned that politicizing the current spate of murders and kidnaps could have devastating consequences.

According to Muntu, “it is important that we as a country take stock of where we are and how we have arrived at this point”.

“Many people have already made conclusions about why the late MP and his brother, Said [Kongo] were murdered,” wrote Muntu.

“It is important that we allow for facts to bear themselves out rather than act based on speculation.”

Muntu noted that insecurity was not partisan, adding that there could be links between Abiriga’s murder and previous killings.

“The style in which they were killed is consistent with several previous high profile murders: Joan Kagezi, Felix Kaweesi and several Muslim clerics,” further wrote Muntu.

“The murder comes at a time when fatal kidnaps, raping and robberies are on the rise nationwide.

Muntu called for a united voice and efforts against murders and kidnaps.

“Because an insecure Uganda affects us all, it is important that we all work towards ensuring that these kind of murders (or the angry backlash that follows) do not become our way of dealing with political, social or financial differences as a country,” counselled Muntu.

He then warned against the dangers of politicizing Abiriga’s murder and other killings before it.

“I therefore appeal to Ugandans to avoid politicising these deaths,” pleaded Muntu, a former rebel in the war that brought Museveni to power.

“When we allow ourselves to engage in a ‘we vs them’ war, we will find ourselves in a zero-some war in which Uganda is burnt to ashes and no one wins. We are better than that. Let’s put #CountryBeforeSelf.”

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