Last Updated on: 27th November 2023, 09:54 am
Open letter to Dr. Frederick Odoi Tanga
Tororo I Salutations Dr Frederick Odoi Tanga. This is Odaka Asuman, the only one you most likely know by that name, the son of your brother.
The only one you told to be bold, frank, fearless but always respectful. I still remember those words of counsel you said to me in 2006 (we had gone to the UBC Ground Zero talk show) at the height of the struggle against the division of Tororo.
Uncle Fred, I have come across an audio making rounds on social media attributed to you. On close examination, there is proof up to 55% that it’s your voice. I put it at 55% because, in this era of computers, anyone can manipulate anything to achieve anything.
But on the assumption that it’s yours, the content of which has precipitated me to write to you this public letter since the audio itself has also gone public and causing jeers, frowns and rate dropping for you on the table of men of social status as yours.
Uncle Fred, the content and message in the audio are loathsome, contemptible, and contemptuous but also extremely reckless and falsely ballooning.
It seems to have been made on the assumption that you are communicating to a very naive audience, illiterates with no basic knowledge of their legal and constitutional entitlement or even exposed to basic current affairs. The objective of the utterances could have been to project yourself as far beyond the law with unlimited authority to dictate the process of the law, that you are way above the law and that you can do anything even extra-judicial, including ordering for the arrest and detention of anyone and still get away with it.
In simple terms, you’re the almighty. This, you know, is only a fictitious imagination because (ordinarily) no one has such powers, not even the President. And such impunity shall not be allowed to thrive anywhere in Tororo because we shall resist.
And if there are any law enforcement personnel(s) (being it police, magistrate, etc,.) whoever allow being used in such a scheme, we shall not only confront but also expose them in accordance with all laws, rules, procedures and processes.
I sound tough because the sense of entitlement in the audio can’t be claimed by even Gen. Muhoozi Keinerugaba, the son of the President. It’s very unlikely that Mr Museveni or anyone who wields real power in this country would make such a reckless statement much less than you sir.
Uncle Frederick, you know I respect you immensely, I know you as a respectful and respected man, a debater and an activist but this audio left me wondering how fixed against the corner, you got boxed to make you forget even the basic facts relating to the political history of this country.
The circumstances surrounding this road issue and the legal liberty every citizen has to demonstrate and /or protest against any issue and no one, absolutely nobody has a right to stop him or her unless in accordance with the law.
To put it even clearer, the chairman of the electoral commission of NRM has no obligation, no right, and absolutely no role in enforcing the law except the limited one given to every ordinary citizen. The only role of the chairman of NRM is to organize internal elections of the NRM, and that is the A-Z of it. Anything beyond that is extra-curricular.
Uncle Frederick, those of us who know where God brought you, thank Him for you, the ladder and honour of success He has accorded you. Your life story is a reference that hard work pays.
But also remember that nature is a dictator. Its dictates are that once you attain a certain social class, there are certain words it won’t allow you to utter, places it won’t allow you to go and things it won’t allow you to say and if you defy, society will look at you with suspicion even if nobody gathers courage to tell you.
Lastly, even if those honourable councillors were telling lies against your role in having them jailed (which I can’t believe because you don’t have such power anywhere), these utterances to an impartial listener, make you look bad, reckless, shabby and arrogant. Mind you, society never sides with the arrogant.
This audio has made me understand why Gen. Moses Ali once wanted to fight Hon. Ssemujju Nganda when the Nganda referred to him simply as a former Iddi Amin minister of Finance or when the same Ssemujju called Hon. Nsaba Buturo as former DC of Kampala and Hon. Buturo was handy at explaining himself.
I don’t hope you want to put yourself in that position.
Lastly, I want to sound a word of support for those leading voices to have the Tororo-Nagongera road tarmacked. Anyone who thinks by speaking out, we are embarrassing NRM or Mr Museveni should tell him to come and make the road. We are tired of lies.
That road has been in the national budget for more than 10 years. So the voice speaking against the lies shouldn’t be silenced by anyone.
If there is anyone who has led more demonstrations and protests in Uganda, it’s Uncle Frederick Odoi Tanga. He organized and led countless protests when he was Chairman of MUWASA and even before as a student.
The road belongs to the central government, and as taxpayers, we are duty-bound to keep reminding the intransigent government of its obligations. If that obligation embarrasses it, then let it make a law dejurisdicting itself from making the road.
The poor state of affairs in regard to service delivery must also be blamed on you, Dr. Tanga Odoi. In the last elections, you heavily participated in bringing very inactive, sycophantic people into leadership positions. As a result, the community is suffering.
The few who are breaking ranks to speak about the poor state of affairs are being called names. This we shall never allow in any future elections for the greater good of our people.
God bless Padhola, God bless Tororo, and God bless Uganda.
For God and My Country
The writer is the Secretary General of the National Economic Empowerment Dialogue-NEED
Tel. +256753195384 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org