NOVEMBER 19, 2010: Rebel Leader Gone for Good - Museveni

Rebel Leader Gone for Good - Museveni

SOURCE: The New Vision

By Chris Ocowun

PRESIDENT Yoweri Museveni has dismissed the Opposition's claims that LRA rebel leader Joseph Kony will return if the people of northern Uganda vote for him.

Addressing a rally at Kaunda Grounds in Gulu district in Thursday, the President ruled out any possibility of the Lord's Resistance Army chief coming back to the north.

He said NRM is a party of action unlike the opposition, who make empty promises.

The president who also received seven former UPC chairpersons from Masaka, Kalangala, Luweero, Kiboga, Nakaseke and Kyankwanzi districts presented to him by former UPC stalwart Henry Mayega, said the army was much stronger and ready for any challenge.

Museveni said while the NRM government fought Sudanese terrorism through Kony' rebels, none of the opposition parties joined the battle.

"I hear the opposition saying that if you vote Museveni next year, Kony will come back again. It's me, with your support that defeated Kony, not Reagan Okumu, Norbert Mao, Olara Otunnu or Besigye," he added.

The president who is on a campaign trail in the Acholi sub-region stated that many of Kony's commanders had been killed in DR Congo and Central African Republic. "We have been fighting for a long time against people who do bad things. We oppose those who do bad things; it does not matter who you are."

Museveni said salaries of teachers and other public servants would be increased slowly after addressing other issues like building a 700 megawatt dam at Karuma to produce electricity for northern Uganda.

"We shall increase their salaries but we must do other things as well," he said.

He advised the Acholi not to waste time on the opposition's claims that he wants to grab their land.

Museveni assured Ugandans of his commitment to transform Uganda into a middle economy country with the per capita rising from the current $540 to $1,000.

"NRM is the only party that can guarantee peace. I assure you that in the next five years, you will reach the US$1,000 per capita to make Uganda one of the middle income countries," he said.

He added that he was happy with the big turn-up for a rally where he introduced the NRM's programme for the next five years, outlining a number of roads and schools to be worked on in northern Uganda.

"We now have peace and economic capability without relying on loans and grants from donors. It's now time to move on with the socio-economic transformation of Uganda. I am happy that most of you are young people because this is the time for you to be active in NRM, which is the only party of action," he told the crowd.

With funding from the World Bank, Museveni said, upgrading of Gulu-Atyak-Bibia road from murrum to tarmack would start in January. He added that designs for Olwiyo-Gulu-Kitgum and Apac-Lira-Kitgum roads for tarmacking started last month and were expected to be completed in December.

The president explained that the reconstruction of Lira-Kamdini-Gulu road, would commence in February 2011.

As part of the transformation, Museveni said, the preliminary master plan and detailed engineering plan to make Gulu airport an international airport for northern Uganda was ongoing.

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