By Eng Patrick Oboi Amuriat
Fellow citizens, all here and in the diaspora, my delegation, leaders of the FDC and my family present here.
Today I came to this nomination a prisoner, while trying to access my office in Najjanankumbi to get vital documents, for what has happened here today, I was kidnapped by the security forces forced into a salon vehicle, brutalized, I wear a lot of bruises on my body and I feel body pain.
I come here without shoes not because it is my choice to walk barefoot but this shows the kind of dictatorship that we are up against, we have always as the FDC preached to Ugandans and said to them that Mr. Museveni now runs a fully blown dictatorship and if any Ugandan out there doesn’t believe see what has a happened to a presidential candidate, a prospective president of Uganda, who can be treated this way?
I would like to assure the people of this land that despite what happens to us in the struggle, many have been maimed and killed, others have gone to the prison because of the struggle to liberate this country. We as the FDC will never give up until the yoke of dictatorship is removed from the necks of the people of this country.
Today I was just saying to the Chairman of the Electoral Commission, he needs to do something about this, because then, if nothing happens the election we are going into will not be a normal election and therefore it is almost ‘fait accompli’ even before the process of soliciting for votes commences. And therefore, my call to Ugandans is that change is not going to come on sliver platter, a brutality of Mr. Museveni supported by a partisan Police and Security System is something that we have got to deal with, this is not a matter of only we in the political frontline, it is going to be a matter of every Ugandan who continues to suffer.
Fellow Countrymen, ladies and gentlemen, my candidature represents the 90% of people who continue to suffer, my candidature is against the 1% of Ugandans who are responsible for the suffering of the 90%, my candidature is about dealing with those 9% who facilitate the dictator and his cohorts, and so we go into this election of course working for a win but if this doesn’t come then the dividends about it should be for us to rally support of the population and ensure that the country is given back to the people.
My slogan in this campaign is ‘Building a New Uganda’, that Uganda that is going to be equal for everybody, that Uganda that is going to address the needs of this peasant living deep in my village, that person who ekes a living, wakes up every day, goes to work to ensure that they provide a service to the people of this country and yet they don’t get paid sufficiently, my candidature is about this woman who when she goes to deliver risks dying , you know that in this country 17 women die every day out of child birth and yet we have people receiving preferential treatment out there in foreign countries at the expense of common Ugandans, this candidature is about this young person whose family sells everything that they have including land to attain education in a University and yet at the end of the day comes back home without a job and becomes a nuisance.
The POA candidature is about education, getting a population that can then be able to contribute effectively to the running of this country. This is not going to be achieved easily, we are aware that the dictator has all the money that he is going to deploy in this campaign, he has the security services that he going to deploy in this campaign, he has got a network of bootlickers whom he is going to deploy in this campaign but our comfort is that we have the people on our side, these are the people who are going to cause change in this country and so my clarion call to all Ugandans is that we go into this elections struggling and struggling for the future of Ugandan, and struggle for the future of those who come after us and those who come after them.
Fellow citizens, at this point may I announce that we will be unveiling our manifesto in a matter of one week and the unveiling of the manifesto is going to take place in the eastern district of Soroti where I was born and started my political journey and so at that point will be explaining to Ugandans how we will achieve whatever promise we have made to the nation of Uganda in the next five years.
My presidency is going to be a presidency of lean everything and therefore those of you who believe in big things this presidency is not going to be for you, we are therefore going to cut cost on expenditure, we are going to run a lean campaign so that the money that is freed will go to assist our people who are suffering in villages, this presidency is going to toe the line of the FDC and for us we have zero tolerance to corruption and therefore this is a strong message to those of you who think this is going to be a joking matter, things have to change for the good of our country.
We will be coming out there to you fellow Ugandans, to preach a message of hope, we will be coming to all the corner of this country to ensure that we inform you about our manifesto which is going to be mainly on policy shifts, a shift in Policy in Education, a shift in Policy in Provision of Social Services, a shift in Policy in how we do Business and Commerce and we will be standing on three pillars as we do this.
Pillar number one, is the pillar that we choose to call transition and in this there is a lot of things that we intend to do to restore Good Governance and the Rule of Law in Uganda that has been destroyed by the current regime.
Pillar number two, is going to be a pillar that addresses the effects of Covid and therefore we think that something needs to be done to ensure that we bring our people back on track in as far as their livelihoods are concerned.
The third pillar of campaign we going to run is a Minimum Agenda for Service Delivery to our people.
And so, I would like to call on all Ugandans to rally behind us the FDC, to rally behind the Presidency of POA so that this may be achieved. I know that in the minds of many, you might say well this is an attempt like any others because you think that the FDC has been in the field many time, I want to remind Ugandans watching and listening to me that the FDC actually won the election 2016 by 52.8%, it is that victory that we pursue beginning today, it is that victory that we seek to reclaim beginning now, it is that victory that we seek to give back to the people of this beloved country the pearl of Africa and so, prepare yourselves it is not business as usual.
We have announced a campaign that is going to take two forms, Plan A that is led by POA beginning today that is going to go into the electoral front, Plan B that is going to compliment Plan A and led by the most formidable activist Col. Rtd Dr. Kizza Besigye who is going to be part of this struggle. And so, to those doubting Thomas’s the FDC is coming on two fronts in this election not in a single front as we used to do previously.
And so, I want to thank everybody who has been helpful in getting me to this point where I am now preparing to run for the highest office in this land. I wish to thank my comrades in FDC and certainly Owek. Wasswa Birigwa who was a competitor with me during our primary election, the Secretariat led by the Hon. Nandala Mafabi Neithan who has done this paid work to ensure that our papers are in order, the leadership of Parliament led by the Hon. Betty Aol Ochan who has continued to rally the troop behind the FDC, I want to thank you all. I want to thank my family who are present here represented by my wife who have been supportive of whatever I do.
I want to thank common Ugandans who have received us in all forms wherever we have gone across this country, to you I would like to say Awadifwo, Apoyo matek, Eragala noi, Eyalama noi, Mwebale ino, Mwebare Munonga, Mwebale nyoo, Asante sana.
God bless you all,
God bless our country,
God bless the FDC and I dare to say,
One Uganda, One People
Raaa, Chaaa POA POA POA POA
Patrick Oboi Amuriat is the president of the Forum for Democratic Change (FDC). Amuriat is running for the post of president of Uganda in the 2021 election.