FDC Extremism: Why Andrew Mwenda is wrong.

I hate extremism, and radicalism. But I think Andrew M. Mwenda has failed to diagnose the disease. If he honestly thinks that the problem is the way certain Ugandans (the so-called radicals) express their feelings/opinion, then he is part of the problem.

There is a big number of Ugandans that feel extremely excluded politically, socially, economically…etc. And they are not few. When the holders of power use it exclusively, to the detriment of others, things like radicalism, extremism happen.

Things like term limits, age limits. And other such controls in our laws were put to maintain a healthy balance of power between the different interest groups. The idea is also to avoid situation where one or a few interest group(s) hold power exclusively for a long time, thereby rendering other groups powerless and hopeless. This balance of power helps in maintain some bit of peace in a society, as all groups, it is expected will feel like they have had a chance at power, economic successes, social benefits, etc.

These controls are even more relevant in young democracies (like in Africa), where state institutions are powerless. They cannot run fair and credible elections, the Police is largely partisan (usually on the side of the ones with political power), the ruling parties are almost fused with the state, the levels of patronage are at the top…etc.

When people are in a state of despair, they usually act irrationally. And that is what we are seeing.

I also think Andrew M. Mwenda is dishonest when he tries to make it look like extremist and radicalism are only exhibited in the Forum for Democratic Change party. We are deal with supporters of various parties on a regular basis. I can tell you that radicalism/extremism are trains common in all parties. There is actually no difference between a typical NRM / FDC supporter. Most supporters of both parties can hardly front an argument and rationally/logically defend it. Both are extremely royal to their heroes (M7 and KB). Their supporters are drawn from the same society. Trying to make the situation look like FDC is the birth of extremism is not honest/true at all.

And for Andrew M. Mwenda to call Kizza Besigye a radical, extremist, etc is the most laughable thing I have ever heard. I have followed the two for a long time, and we both know, who among the two hates divergent views. The public can judge on that.

But most importantly, we need to examine the cause of this unpleasant//dangerous behavior, instead of pointing fingers. Mwenda calls himself a researcher. I guess that would be a good research topic.

 

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