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Talking to Museveni is not a crime, says DP’s former leader

MASAKA- A leading Democratic Party elder has rebuked some party members who demonise the current leadership party simply because they are willing to dialogue with President Yoweri Museveni over national issues.

Mr John Kawanga, the former Democratic Party national vice president and former Masaka Municipality MP says party supporters should not be offended when their leaders talk to President Museveni, saying “these are highly inevitable circumstances faced by all leaders despite the different political opinions they have.”

“I wonder why some people in DP think it is an offense to talk with or to Museveni. I don’t know where people with such reasoning come from,’ he said in Masaka town at the weekend, while addressing Masaka District DP  leaders, during a meeting that was convened to create and strengthen lower  party structures in  Masaka Town at the weekend .

A section of DP supporters is fueling a revolt against Mr Norbert Mao accusing him of having a “suspicious relationship” with President Museveni and the ruling government.

Mr Kawanga said there are certain political dynamics that warrant Opposition leaders to interface and dialogue with their counterparts in government to overcome the current social and political challenges.

According to him, the more political leaders with differing political beliefs engage and share opinions, the more they appreciate each other’s leadership potential and strength to overcome critical problems.

He narrated that when he was a legislator during the Obote II regime, he saved the lives of his jailed colleagues by engaging and dialoging with the late Paul Muwanga (the then powerful vice president) and President Milton Obote.

According to Mr Kawanga, DP’s unwavering strength over the years is not based on the individual wisdom or charisma of top leaders but on the party ideological principals, its membership and structures, urging MP Betty Nambooze’s Buganda faction to strategise on how they can systematically capture top party leadership other than disorienting the whole system over egos.

“Actually, all those people that are elected into DP leadership are custodians who will never own this party. One may choose to defect or serve under the NRM, but he or she can’t go with the party,” he said.

He blamed the current squabbles on intolerance selfishness and indiscipline by some party members and leaders, traits he says are disastrous.

Bukoto East MP ,Ms Florence Namayanja, who is also the chairperson of DP Women League, urged lower party leadership to desist from engaging in selfish power struggles.

“You should not allow people to use you for selfish gains, let all of us harmonise positions before we set out with a common voice rather than uttering offensive and false accusations against each other on streets,” she said.

Meanwhile, the leaders condemned the excessive state forces used to quash meetings organised by Nambooze and her group. They also tasked the current leadership to initiate harmonious talks with all erratic members.

©Alleastafrica and Daily Monitor

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