When Museveni was poisoned


The National Resistance Movement (NRM) on Thursday celebrated 37 years since their victory in 1986, led by NRA guerrilla tactician President Yoweri Museveni.

Previously while giving testimony on the bush war, Museveni said that several things that happened during the 5-year battle gave him a glimpse of God’s might.

“We were helped by God,” Museveni said.

Indeed, Museveni’s bush war can be seen through God’s lens as the now longest-serving Ugandan leader came close to death a record number of times, including on a very serious occasion he was poisoned.

Museveni fell seriously sick after his inner circle was allegedly infiltrated and they administered a drink which was not thoroughly checked.

As it was the practice, Museveni’s food or drink or any consumable had to be tested by at least two people before it would be administered to him.

However, the process continued getting complicated as it was no longer possible to achieve good sanitation in the bush from the officers present. Many were not maintain the health SOPs and over time it was not possible to trust them to take a sip of the commander’s cup or food.

It was then that the high command ordered Olive Zizinga and Gertrude Njuba to administer Museveni’s food and ensure it was free from infiltration.

While they continued their work smoothly, one morning, the bush camp woke up to very terrible news; Museveni was terribly ill, and he had been poisoned.

Museveni was hurting in the stomach, and the back, he could hardly locomote, and his total body weakness worried all and sundry.

Sources that were privy to the incidences then confirm that the only thing Museveni was left with, was the brain, and he could able speak, but nothing else could come from him.

At the camp, only two doctors were allowed near the inner circle; Dr Ronald Batta, Museveni’s immediate attendant and director of Health Services deputised by Dr Kizza Besigye, now a strongman of the opposition Forum for Democratic Change.

Dr Batta was absent on the day, and Besigye was summoned to examine Museveni fully.

According to retired Captain Olive Zizinga, Dr Besigye on examining Museveni diagnosed that there had been poisoning.

Aides are arrested for execution

On hearing the news, Zizinga and Njuba were rounded off and detained for execution as the guerrilla code dictated.

They would later be saved by Museveni who asked that the two women be given the responsibility to treat him for this poisoning at all costs.

According to Njuba, Museveni said that whoever was involved in the poisoning should take the responsibility of ensuring he gets completely fine, and until then none of them had an off day from nursing Museveni.

The two women were then released and deployed to nursing Museveni until he gets fine.

However a few days later, with Museveni worsening and his health getting out of hand, Dr Ronald Batta arrived at camp and he was asked to re-examine the commander.

Dr Batta later diagnosed that Museveni had suffered a terrible reaction from an amoeba attack on the liver.

This brought poison-like symptoms but advised it was very treatable even with available medicines.

Museveni was then put on medication until he was better to continue with the war.

How did the amoeba attack happen?

Zizinga and Njuba narrate that during one of the moments, they had wanted to have some spiced tea, hence looked for some herbs in the bush and boiled the tea with them.

When they were done with their tea fill, they asked their able assistants to wash the kettle and prepare so that Museveni can also have some tea.

The assistants however did not keep their duty post, instead proceeding to boil the tea with the same herbs and giving Museveni.

It is these herbs that affected Museveni and provided a window for the amoeba to attack him.



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