Following a video circulating on social media featuring Deputy Speaker Thomas Tayebwa delivering a stern message and cautioning the NRM historicals for consistently undermining the parliament he presides over.
Tayebwa, representing Ruhinda North in Mitooma district, assumed the role of Deputy Speaker following the passing of former Speaker Jacob Oulanyah in March 2022. During Oulanyah’s tenure, Tayebwa served as the government Chief Whip, while Anita Among held the position of Deputy Speaker. Upon Among’s elevation to Speaker of parliament, Tayebwa relinquished the Chief Whip position and contested for Deputy Speaker, emerging victorious.
Both Tayebwa and Anita, now steering the 11th parliament, hail from the former FDC ranks but aligned themselves with the NRM, earning favor from the party’s leadership. Expressing his perspective, Tayebwa suggests that while Uganda’s challenges may persist, the solutions have evolved. He cryptically alludes to the questions of 1986, when certain individuals emerged from the bush, highlighting that the contemporary answers differ significantly.
Like many Ugandans, Tayebwa advocates for a departure from narratives centered on past struggles, often championed by Museveni’s bush war comrades, who occasionally resort to invoking their militant past to intimidate others in Uganda.
“The answers do not lie in reminiscing about your bush escapades, brandishing guns. The narrative has shifted entirely. I once told one of them that my birthdate is November 10th, 1980; I was not part of your struggle. We face our own challenges today,” Tayebwa states visibly agitated.
Further, Tayebwa challenges the notion perpetuated by bush war veterans that the absence of revolutionaries in parliament renders the institution ineffective. He contends that the current educated generation must confront those who ascended to power through the bush war era, despite lacking formal education.
“In parliament, the absence of revolutionaries does not equate to irrelevance. We must challenge these assertions, and I urge journalists to aid us in this endeavor. I preside over a parliament comprising highly educated individuals with PhDs and master’s degrees. To claim they cannot govern Uganda, when those without formal education once did, is fallacious,” Tayebwa concludes.