UNAIDS Executive Director Winnie Byanyima has revealed that Gen Elly Tumwine, the now deceased former security minister, apologized to her for his role in an alleged plot to rig her out in the Mbarara Municipality parliamentary election held two decades ago.
Gen Tumwine, a man who served in several capacities in the national army, security and government, passed on at a Nairobi Hospital on August 25 morning after weeks of hospitalization.
In her tribute to the fallen general, Byanyima, one of the women of Yoweri Museveni’s National Resistance Army (NRA) bush war, saluted Gen Tumwine for his role in felling Milton Obote’s regime and in the struggle for democracy and human rights.
“I salute comrade Gen Elly Tumwine for the sacrifices and contribution he made to liberate Uganda from Obote II’s illegitimate and oppressive regime. A loyal cadre of NRM, who didn’t often see ‘the other side of coin’. I disagreed with him many times but never doubted his intentions,” said Byanyima.
“My heart goes out to the family of Comrade Gen Elly Tumwine. In my thoughts and prayers. May he RIP and may you be comforted in the knowledge that he contributed to the struggle for democracy and human rights, which struggle continues today! Aluta continua – as he would say!”
Asked by a follower whether she would shake hands with Gen Tumwine if he was still alive, Byanyima said that the general and artist had apologized for trying to rig her election in 2001. The hotly contested poll pitted Byanyima, wife to opposition kingpin Dr Kizza Besigye, against Ngoma Ngime, a former Resident District Commissioner (RDC).
“Gen Tumwine called me and apologised for leading an unsuccessful attempt to rig my election as MP of Mbarara Municipality in 2001,” Byanyima revealed.
“Gen Tumwine was loyal to NRM and his trust was sometimes misused. May Gen Tumwine rest in peace.”
Tasked to explain who she thinks will liberate Ugandans from the current regime, Byanyima said: “We, Ugandans who liberated ourselves from Obote 2 will continue the struggle. History is on our side, we will build democracy 7 prosperity for ALL our people brick by brick, day by day. No surrender, no relenting, no shortcuts. Our teachers taught us: Rome was not built in a day
Meanwhile, opposition politician has told Ugandans to learn from Gen Elly Tumwine, who like most of the NRA revolutionaries and Museveni generals who were much loved in 1986, have ended up very much hated, with some Ugandans even celebrating Tumwine’s death. (Read Story Here).