Mao: NRM is fuelling DP disagreements

DP president general, Norbert Mao is blaming some of the disagreements in Uganda’s oldest political party on some invisible hand of the ruling NRM party.

Mao is currently involved in a war of words with Butambala MP Muhammad Muwanga Kivumbi who last week, while appearing on a TV talk-show accused Mao of being funded by the NRM to stifle the Democratic Party (DP).

“Those small squabbles we have in DP are fuelled by the NRM because for them, if one DP member is fighting another, it benefits them,” Mao told journalists in Kampala.

Mao’s burst up with Kivumbi stems from his desire to contest for the country’s presidency in 2021 which Kivumbi and some other DP members feel is likely to antagonize Kyadondo East MP Robert Kyagulnyi Ssentamu (Bobi Wine) who has already declared his desire to run for President in 2021.

Kivumbi is among the political actors that are fronting Kyagulanyi to challenge President Yoweri Museveni who has received his party MPs’ endorsement as the NRM sole candidate.

“I have the desire to run for President but I have to go through the DP process as per our party constitution,” Mao said.

He however expressed his willingness to bow out of the presidential race should the opposition parties agree on a single candidate.

“We are looking for a transitional president, one who will be around for five years; just one term to bring back politics to normalcy because currently, we have abnormal politics, political parties are not functioning the way they are supposed to function,” Mao said.

He said that although the ongoing engagements  between the various opposition political players give optimism of a positive outcome, the tough exchanges between rival opposition supporters on the social media are affecting the process.

“Our supporters should leave us to engage and agree on a single candidate. In Kenya, it took for the opposition to rally behind Mwai Kibaki to defeat [Daniel arap] Moi’s system. Kibaki was not the front runner because he wasn’t a good speaker nor was he a crowd puller, but when the forces opposed to Moi backed him, they defeated Moi and his KANU [Kenya African National Union],” Mao said.